Dove Ad Turns Black Woman Into White Woman — Outrage Ensues, Apology Follows

Dove recently posted an ad on Facebook that has caused quite the stir and received an overwhelming amount of backlash via social media comments. The clip that ran for a few seconds showed a black woman taking off her shirt and emerging as a white woman after using Dove’s body lotion.

The ad instantly drew comments slamming the product’s marketing people for racism. Dove did take the ad down, but in all the commotion it was copied and shared among the masses, according to the Guardian.

The company issued an apology saying they had “missed the mark” when advertising their Dove body lotion. According to what the comments slamming the ad on Facebook had to say, they more than missed the mark. Many social media users saw this Dove ad as blatant racism, reports the Guardian.

Folks are having a hard time trying to imagine what it was they were going for by turning a black woman into a white woman in the first place. People want to know what the original mindset was behind that move.

According to Metro, the full advertisement also had a white woman removing her shirt and turning into an Asian woman. Dove’s thought behind this ad was how Dove works on all skin tones. The Dove people took the ad down and posted an apology. They said as follows.

“An image we recently posted on Facebook missed the mark in representing women of color thoughtfully. We deeply regret the offense it caused.”


The problem with this ad comes in the form of history. Soap and different products were sold during long-ago decades with the promise of turning black skin into white and people took the opportunity to remind Dove of this, with many posting some of these ads to Facebook and Twitter. This Dove ad evoked some of the same types of images from those ads of bygone years. Dove’s ad did show a black woman turning white, or at least that is what the ad appeared to convey with the images in the clip.

According to the Guardian, Despite the ad coming down, the damage was done. The ad collected nearly 3,000 comments that “were almost exclusively negative.” Not only did social media users slam the people at Dove, many called for a boycott of all Dove’s products.


Between some very angry comments, reprimands were weaved into the complaints that were aimed at the Dove people. They suggested that Dove should have realized that people would “call it out” after posting the ad because of the similarity it holds to those ads of long ago, according to the Metro.

Dove did something similar to this before in another ad that brought just as much backlash. According to the Metro, Dove sold a lotion deemed for “normal to dark skin” and it showed a before and after shot in the next advert. It had a black woman in the “before” section and a white woman under the section dubbed “after.”


[Featured Image by Little Perfect Stock/Shutterstock]