Dove has apologized for a racially insensitive Facebook ad that sent shock waves through social media. The ad only lasted a few hours before Dove took it down over the weekend.
The three-second gif showed a black woman removing a brown T-shirt to reveal a white woman underneath, suggesting Dove Body Wash had cleansed her.
In 2011, another Dove ad drew similar criticism; it featured three women of different races in front of a before-and-after skin photo washed by Dove.
Dove: ‘We deeply regret the offense’
Before acknowledging that its ad “missed the mark,” Dove’s Facebook apology said the company is “committed to representing the beauty of diversity.”
Dove also sent a statement to USA TODAY, saying:
“This did not represent the diversity of real beauty which is something Dove is passionate about and is core to our beliefs, and it should not have happened. We have removed the post and have not published any other related content. We apologize deeply and sincerely for the offense that it has caused and do not condone any activity or imagery that insults any audience.”
Did Dove apology lack empathy?
On Twitter, critics are calling for #BoycottDove and saying the apology “lacked empathy.”
Some likened Dove’s ad to racial soap ads that surfaced before slavery was abolished in the U.S.
Many are calling for heads to roll. Others are examining other Dove products for racist suggestions.
Others are not convinced Dove had any racial malicious intent in the ad:
In its story, USA TODAY points out “these mishaps run counter to Dove’s Real Beauty campaign,” featuring women of different ages, sizes and ethnic backgrounds.
Earlier this year, Shonda Rhimes, the mastermind behind Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal, teamed up with Dove to create “Real Beauty Products.”
“For too long the definition of beauty has been too narrow and let’s face it, unreal,” Rhimes says in a video on the Dove site.
Tell us what you think:
You tell us what you think about the Dove ad.
Watch: Dove apologizes, “missed the mark” representing women of color.
Watch: Shonda Rhimes teams up with Dove to create “Real Beauty Products”