The skin care company Nivea obviously didn’t get the memo that racially charged advertisements rub some people the wrong way.
Their latest advertisement features a black man about to throw away another version of himself sporting a big Afro, beard and mustache, with the campaign slogan reading, “Look Like You Give A Damn.”
The German-based skin care company developed a series of print ads targeting men, for the company’s revitalizing line of men’s skincare. The ads portray well-groomed men throwing away masks of what they would look like without using Nivea’s skincare products.
The ad featuring a white man reads, “Sin City, isn’t an excuse to look like Hell.” However the ad with the black says, “Re-Civilize Yourself.” Which presumably indicates having a natural Afro and facial hair equates to an uncivilized look.
Most recently supermodel Naomi Campbell said she was considering “every option available,” to go after the chocolate company Cadbury for using her name to promote its new Bliss chocolate bar.
The advertisement read, “Move over Naomi, there’s a new diva in town,” and featured Cadbury chocolates on a mound of diamonds. Several black civil rights groups backed Campbell’s cause, and subsequently all billboards featuring the advertisement were taken down. Cadbury later released a statement of apology for their advertisement saying, “It was certainly never our intention to cause any offense and the campaign itself is a light-hearted take on the social pretensions of Cadbury Dairy Milk Bliss.”
Blogger Miss Jia has ignited an online debate about the controversial Nivea advertisement, and Twitter and Facebook have also been abuzz.
Nivea has pulled the ad following the criticism. The company released this statement on Facebook: “Thank you for caring enough to give us your feedback about the recent ‘Re-civilized’ NIVEA FOR MEN ad. This ad was inappropriate and offensive. It was never our intention to offend anyone, and for this we are deeply sorry. This ad will never be used again. Diversity and equal opportunity are crucial values of our company.”