Dove’s latest ad (watch video) was incredibly insensitive in a way that is appalling in 2017, believes Kelly Macias of DailyKos. The video furthered the notion that black people’s skin can somehow be cleaned to become white. This is strongly reflective of America’s racism against black people, particularly in upholding a beauty standard that favors white features. The ad is particularly harrowing because it evokes images from long ago when soap companies openly used ads depicting them cleaning the ‘black’ off of black people. This isn’t the first ad by Dove that contains subtle elements of racism.
The Dove ad had no racist intentions whatsoever and is being heavily taken out of context, writes Times Live. Much of the outrage stems from people seeing the image of a black woman becoming a white woman. In the actual ad it isn’t about the first woman getting ‘cleaner’ at all. It’s simply about different fabric color tones for different skin tones. The white actor then turns into an Indian woman, undermining any potentially racist message. Online backlash to Dove’s ad has been strongly exaggerated. The company clarified that its intentions were far from racist, but to celebrate diversity.