Dove parent company Unilever will drop the word ‘normal’ from beauty products packaging

Nation/world
A view of products on display as Dove, Getty Images and Girlgaze debut Project #ShowUs at Beautycon NYC on April 06, 2019 in New York City. (Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Images for Dove)

A view of products on display as Dove, Getty Images and Girlgaze debut Project #ShowUs at Beautycon NYC on April 06, 2019 in New York City. (Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Images for Dove)

Consumer goods conglomerate Unilever said Tuesday it will no longer use the word “normal” to advertise and package its beauty and personal care products and will ban the excessive photoshopping of models as part of its inclusivity policy.

The company, which owns skincare brands like Dove and Simple and haircare brands like TreSemme and TIGI, said the word “normal” will be removed from the packaging of at least 200 products within a year.

It also said it will increase the number of advertisements featuring people from diverse groups, and that it will not “digitally alter a person’s body shape, size, proportion or skin colour in its brand advertising.”

Many skincare and hair products use phrases such as “for normal skin” or “normal hair,” and Unilever says its global research suggests that using “normal” as a descriptor “makes most people feel excluded.”

Sunny Jain, who leads Unilever’s beauty and personal care division, said the company wanted to tackle “harmful norms and stereotypes” and shape a “far more inclusive definition of beauty.”

“We know that removing ‘normal’ from our products and packaging will not fix the problem alone, but it is an important step forward,” Jain said in a statement.

The company renamed its skin-lightening brand in India last year from Fair & Lovely to Glow & Lovely after facing anger from customers who said Unilever was perpetuating negative stereotypes about darker skin tones.

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