Unilever to remove terms like 'whitening' from beauty products, rename Fair & Lovely line

The consumer products giant is dropping terms like “whitening,” “lightening” and “fair” from its marketing language in Floyd death fallout

Unilever says it is dropping terms like “whitening,” “lightening” and “fair” from its marketing language to better promote racial inclusivity in the beauty industry. As part of the push, the consumer products giant will rename its Fair & Lovely product range.

Calls to rebrand products and logos with problematic histories and racist connotations have swept the globe following the Memorial Day death of George Floyd in police custody.

In this file photo, two young women stand at a counter next to a shelf where Hindustan Unilever Ltd. Fair & Lovely beauty products are displayed for sale at a store in Mumbai, India. 

In this file photo, two young women stand at a counter next to a shelf where Hindustan Unilever Ltd. Fair & Lovely beauty products are displayed for sale at a store in Mumbai, India.  (Getty)

In order to celebrate a “more inclusive vision of beauty,” Unilever announced on Thursday that the company will no longer be using the words “white/whitening,” “light/lightening” and “fair/fairness” across its Beauty and Personal Care portfolio of brands.

A spokesperson for Unilever told Fox News that the change applies to all beauty and personal care products designed for skin, including creams, moisturizers, soap, body wash and deodorants.

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“We are fully committed to having a global portfolio of skin care brands that is inclusive and cares for all skin tones, celebrating greater diversity of beauty,” Sunny Jain, president of Beauty and Personal Care, said in a statement. “We recognize that the use of the words ‘fair’, ‘white’ and ‘light’ suggest a singular ideal of beauty that we don’t think is right, and we want to address this.”

“As we’re evolving the way that we communicate the skin benefits of our products that deliver radiant and even tone skin, it’s also important to change the language we use.”

In this file photo, Fair & Lovely beauty products are displayed for sale at a store in Mumbai, India.

In this file photo, Fair & Lovely beauty products are displayed for sale at a store in Mumbai, India. (Getty)

With that being said, Unilver now plans to rename its Fair & Lovely brand, sold in Asia.

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The Associated Press reports that the change will involve dropping the word “fair,” per a statement from Hindustan Unilever Limited. The new name is said to be awaiting regulatory approval.

In the release, Unilever stressed that its Fair & Lovely range “has never been, and is not, a skin bleaching product.” The global consumer company said its advertising for the Fair & Lovely products has been evolving since 2014.

Competitor Johnson & Johnson also recently revealed it would be pulling two skin-whitening products lines from sale in Asia and the Middle East, with plans to launch Band-Aid bandages to match more diverse skin tones.

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