11 Julio 2017 09:47
A black woman and people looking on aghast
Looks of disgust. Women covering their faces. A king eyeing his black suitor with displeasure. He then exclaims ‘Oh my Gosh!’ as he looks on in disbelief. The Malaysian beauty retailer, Watsons, has been accused of racism after posting this advert that lasts more than 14 minutes.
It shows a woman, ‘cursed’ with having dark skin, who aspires to win over the king and be chosen from a retinue of white women. The king initially rejects her, as her black skin is unacceptable in the palace. But later, the black woman reveals that it was all just a trick to test the king.
She is, in fact, light-skinned and has painted herself. Only after washing away her dark skin does the king recognise and fall in love with her.
‘I’m not black, in fact I am flawless,’ the girl tells him.
The ad campaign, which was fast accused of racism on social networks, has already been removed from the Watson brand’s YouTube channel. The company has issued a statement publicly apologising for the whole affair.
‘We are sorry that some of our fans feel offended by the video which was not our intention,’ reads the statement on Facebook, by way of an apology.
It’s not the first time someone has been put in blackface to sell products that turn your skin white. A year ago, this Thai brand also launched a controversial ad campaign with the slogan
‘White makes you win’. The advert was for pills which, apparently, can help to quickly lighten your skin.
The consumer goods giant, Unilever, which owns brands such as Dove and Axe, was also branded racist for selling skin-whitening products in Asia.
According to Al Jazeera, skin-whiteners now form an expanding market in areas of the Asia-Pacific region. It is estimated that the industry will turnover more than 20 billion dollars in the coming years.