Racist Facebook App? Vaseline Skin Whitening Cream, 'Be Prepared'
Shahid Kapur Pitchman For Vaseline Be Prepared Skin Whitening Cream For Men
The social change and advocacy site change.org is asking Facebook to remove what change.org sees as a racist application.
Unilever which owns Vaseline Be Prepared skin whitening cream has created a social media version of the skin lightening product.
To date over 9,000 people have signed the Facebook Vaseline Be Prepared petition.
The skin whitening or bleaching product is targeted at Indian men, featuring Bollywood star Shahid Kapur.
Whitening or Bleaching Creams to make dark Indian look white are very popular dominating the cosmetics industry in India. The products are also popular with non-resident Indians as well.
This isn't the first time Unilever has drawn serious controversy for its less-than-discreet attempts to market the virtues of white skin in India. Back in 2008, for example, the multinational tried to hawk a skin-whitening product called "White Beauty." In India, skin-whitening creams are extremely popular, accounting for fully 60% of nationwide cosmetic sales.
In some Asian countries, particularly in India, dark skin is associated with ugliness while white skin is equated with beauty. Critics say skin bleaching and whitening products perpetuate these bigoted stereotypes.
The Vaseline Be Prepared Facebook page has a number of supporters of the product and detractors.
Brit Tuttle If you think this a racist because it trying to change and Lighten skin Color? get real that must mean Tanning products are Racist too. and i have never hear any one think tanning or tanning products as being Racist.
I must be a big racist because i want to have a tan :P
If people want lighter skin let then do it.
Altering your skin tone is bad for you any ways.
but people will do what they want
Sandeep Anirudhan there you go.... i assume you are another westerner who has no idea what fairness products ads in india are like......... please go to youtube and view them........ then make your opinion.................. they blatantly say dark skin is horrible, therefore, use fairness creams.............. its a social issue, its about reinforcing racist stereotypes.
Vaseline is defending its skin whitening product and the Facebook application.
The Facebook application for Vaseline Men was created as a "culturally relevant and engaging way for Indian men to interact with this product," a spokesman for Vaseline in India said.
Saftey concerns surrounding skin whitening creams have also surfaced. A Chicago Tribune report from May shows traces of mercury on some of these products despite an FDA ban on mercury in such skin products.
Some creams promising to lighten skin, eliminate age spots and zap freckles contain high levels of mercury, a toxic metal that can cause severe health problems, a Tribune investigation has found.
The newspaper sent 50 skin-lightening creams to a certified lab for testing, most of them bought in Chicago stores and a few ordered online. Six were found to contain amounts of mercury banned by federal law.
Of those, five had more than 6,000 parts per million — enough to potentially cause kidney damage over time, according to a medical expert.
India is not the only country where skin whitening products are popular, In China, the skin bleaching business is worth $7 billion.