Nivea Natural Fairness Body Lotion is causing controversy, and not because of any ingredients or the benefits that are promised. Instead, the below ads used to market the lotion that promises “skin lightening by reducing or inhibiting overall skin pigmentation” are being blamed for telling women of color that they are only attractive if their skin is lighter. Nivea has claimed that is not the message, but instead point to active ingredients like licorice extract and Octadecenedioic acid in their lotion to help moisturize and even out skin tones. Nivea’s response can be seen in the below Twitter post.
According to the product page, Nivea Natural Fairness Body Lotion produces smoother and more radiant skin, while it also protects. Customers are advised to use Nivea’s Natural Fairness lotion for at least one month in order to see their skin become “significantly lighter than before” after using it twice a day. However, not all viewers of the below ad for Nivea Natural Fairness are happy with the manner in which the lotion was marketed. The commercial shows the Nivea Natural Fairness lotion being applied and immediately changing darker skin to lighter skin. The Nivea Natural Fairness product was defended as one marketed to regions like Africa and Asia, where consumers tend to desire fairer skin, instead of tanned skin, the company claims.
This is why black businesses need to rise up and cater for our needs. Nivea can’t get away with pushing this skin lightening agenda across Africa. Appalling. pic.twitter.com/8uR7XHNgVa— William Adoasi (@WilliamAdoasi) October 18, 2017
Nivea marketed the Natural Fairness lotion in Nigeria, Senegal, Ghana, and Cameroon, according to the Daily Mail. The feedback on Facebook features many people slamming Nivea and the ad, along with calls to boycott Nivea products. As seen in the below version of a different ad for the same product, that video swelled to more than 20,000 views without as much backlash as the above Nivea ad.
Nivea’s Natural Fairness lotion has prompted the following Twitter Moment, which is going viral.
Nivea features former Miss Nigeria, Omowunmi Akinnifesi, in the ad, who also appears in the below Nivea YouTube video promoting a giveaway related to the Nivea Natural Fairness bride of the month. Calls for the billboards across Africa to be taken down are appearing on social media, along with Nivea boycott buzz.
[Featured Image by Ajit Solanki/AP Images]