Body Image

Dove Ad Sparks Controversy for Being Racist, Company Issues an Apology

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A Dove ad sparked controversy over the weekend, and was pulled after backlash on social media. The ad depicted a black woman removing her t-shirt to reveal a white woman underneath. People were quick to point out the racially insensitive ad, and Dove responded by removing it from social media and issuing an apology.

Dove took to Twitter to apologize for the problematic ad. “We deeply regret the offense it caused.”

dove ad

Image: Twitter/@Habeeb_Akande

The ad showed a black woman removed her shirt to reveal a white woman. Then the white woman then removes her shirt to reveal a third woman. It ran as an autoplay ad on Facebook with the caption, “Ready for a Dove shower?”

The Dove ad was not the first time the company has found itself in hot water.

One ad showed three women standing in front of a wall with two posters behind them. One said “Before”, and the other “After”. The before showed cracked skin, and the after depicted smooth skin.

The darker skinned woman was placed in front of the before picture, and the white woman was standing in front of the after.

Clearly, the placement of the women in front of the boards was problematic. Dove also got called to task for a description on one of their products.

“For normal to dark skin”. Um.

Still, some people were quick to point out that the most recent ad seemed to be saying that their soaps can be used by all skin types.

The message may be that their products are suitable for everyone. However, after more than a couple gaffs in the past, you’d think their advertising division would pay a bit more attention? Perhaps it wasn’t the intent of Dove to use racist imagery, but this isn’t their first offense. Dove says the image “missed the mark in representing women of color thoughtfully.” Hopefully, third time’s the charm, and Dove gets it’s act together for future ads.

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(Image: Twitter / @Habeeb_Akande)