The word ‘fair’ from Fair & Lovely was axed a little over a week ago by Hindustan Unilever Limited, which it has now said would be replaced with the word ‘Glow’. Glow & Lovely will be the new name for the brand, and will soon be seen on shelves. The Men's range of Fair & Lovely will be called 'Glow & Handsome'.
The Fair & Lovely brand has been criticised by some sections for promoting fairness as a symbol of beauty in an Indian milieu where diversity of skin tones is prevalent.
In early 2019, the brand's communication moved away from the benefits of fairness, whitening and skin lightening, towards glow, even tone, skin clarity and radiance, which are holistic measures of healthy skin.
While the move to drop the word ‘fair’ came at a time when there are growing voices against racial stereotyping, the company insisted that its step has got nothing to do with the current anti-racism movements in the West, saying it has been working on the evolution of the Rs 2,000-crore brand for many years.
Activists were campaigning on Change.Org through petitions asking the company to drop the brand or its name.
Nida Hasan, Country Director, Change.org India, told PTI, "It is hard to ignore the role of Fair &Lovely advertisements in shaping colourism in India. The decision by HUL is a much needed acknowledgment of India's diversity. Just recently, Johnson & Johnson announced a similar move based on a citizen driven petition."
Presently, 70% sales of Fair & Lovely is from the rural areas and 30% from urban markets, he added.
Unilever President (Beauty & Personal Care) Sunny Jain earlier said that they recognise that the use of the words fair', white' and light' suggest a singular ideal of beauty. “...that we don't think is right, and we want to address this. As we're evolving the way that we communicate the skin benefits of our products that deliver radiant and even tone skin, it's also important to change the language we use.
Recently, the US healthcare and FMCG giant Johnson & Johnson (J&J) has stopped the sale of its skin-whitening creams globally, including India. French cosmetics major L’Oreal Group also said it will drop words such as white, fair, and light from all its skincare products. L'Oreal is owns global brands like Garnier, L''Oreal Paris, Maybelline New York and NYX Professional Makeup.
With inputs from PTI