Unilever will no longer use the word 'normal' on beauty products because it makes people feel excluded
- Unilever will stop using the word "normal" on its packaging, in an attempt to be more inclusive.
- The company will also stop making digital alterations to the bodies and skin colours of its models.
- The company conducted a global poll of 10,000 people and 50% said they felt excluded by the word "normal."
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Unilever has decided that it will no longer be using the word "normal" on the packaging of any of its bath and beauty products in a bid to be a more inclusive company.
The company will also not make any digital alterations to the bodies and skin colour of the models it uses in its advertising.
This shift in Unilever's branding approach will be completed by March 2022 and will involve more than 100 Unilever brands removing the word "normal" as a term to describe skin type or hair texture.
The word will be replaced with more specific terms, like "grey hair" for shampoos or "moisture replenish" for some skin creams.
The company is making the switch after a poll it did of around 10,000 people across the world. More than half of those surveyed said that they felt excluded when the word "normal" was used to describe skin or hair. Meanwhile, 70% of poll respondents said the word "normal" in advertising had a negative impact.
"We know that removing 'normal' alone will not fix the problem, but we believe it is an important step towards a more inclusive definition of beauty," Sunny Jain, president of Unilever's beauty and personal care division, told Reuters.
The London-based conglomerate has had to contend with its share of backlash from some of its ad campaigns in the past which have in the past pushed white, Western ideals of beauty.
The organization renamed a top-selling skin-lightening product in India from "Fair & Lovely" to "Glow & Lovely" after consumers complained that the name of the product perpetuated negative stereotypes of darker skin tones.
One of the company's key brands, Dove, also faced pushback after an ad for its body washes depicted a black woman removing her top, only to reveal a white woman. The ad was branded as 'racist' by customers on social media.
Most recently, the BBC also reported that another Unilever brand, TRESemmé, had been forced to pull all its hair care products from South African retail outlets after one of its ads labeled African hair as "frizzy and dull" and "dry and damaged."
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