Why Celebs reaction to the Fair and Lovely controversy is not fooling anyone
Reports are coming in regarding Hindustan Unilever’s decision on dropping the word ‘Fair’ from their product titling ‘Fair & Lovely’.
In the wake of the recent events, where the death of an African American George Floyd stirred a tension against racism & colorism worldwide, this is certainly to be a notable transformation that India is witnessing. This news has formed a mixed reaction among the general public. According to some, it is nothing but a branding decision by a corporation. A corporation that has been encashing by fuelling the insecurities of the average population with a darker complexion. On the other hand, some accept it as a step in the right direction.
Hindustan Unilever launched ‘Fair & Lovely’ in the year 1975. The very product along with the advertisements openly painted darker skin tone as something to be ashamed of. And the corporation has been receiving criticism from the sound minds of society over the decades. But the rise of the internet initiated the spread of awareness to a whole new level. It gave people the platform to voice their opinion. And it is safe to say that it is working. Or else why would the same Bollywood celebrities is supporting the change those had been profiting out of these antics?
Superstar Shah Rukh Khan‘s heiress Suhana Khan granted her support to Hindustan Unilever‘s decision. Yet King Khan himself featured on multiple commercials endorsing the ‘Fair & Handsome’ a variant focusing on male demographics. Furthermore, he stayed true to the spirit of their commercials during his extended period of association with the product. That is to say, he did take jabs at men with darker skin tone with his charm. Adding more to the story, back in 2016 King Khan said that (endorsing fairness creams) is ‘legal’ though he doesn’t ‘believe in the idea of selling beauty’.
On the other hand, celebrities like Kangana Ranaut, Abhay Deol, Richa Chadda, Bipasha Basu who have never supported the inherent racism and colorism that came with this product voiced their praise addressing the change. However, Yami Gautam, the face of the product is yet to register her remark on this report specifically. But during the promotion of her movie ‘Bala’ in 2019, she addressed the issue and pointed at the shifted tone of the campaigns. It is significant that the said movie severely mocked the aggressive smear tactics that the corporation has been depending upon for years.
It is reported that the new title of the product is to be ‘Glow & Lovely’.
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