The product lines, Neutrogena Fine Fairness and Clear Fairness by Clean & Clear, were not distributed in the United States but were sold in Asia and the Middle East.
“Conversations over the past few weeks highlighted that some product names or claims on our Neutrogena and Clean & Clear dark-spot reducer products represent fairness or white as better than your own unique skin tone,” the company said in a statement. “This was never our intention — healthy skin is beautiful skin.”
Soon after, HUL has followed the same route. The new name, HUL said, is awaiting regulatory approvals and the company expects to change the name in the next few months.
Fair and Lovely is HUL’s flagship skincare product and reportedly generates $560 million in annual sales. Reports suggest that it holds 50-70% share of the skin whitening market in India.
HUL claimed in a statement that over the last decade, Fair & Lovely’s advertising has evolved to communicate a message of women’s empowerment.
“The brand’s vision is to adopt a holistic approach to beauty that cares for people, that must be inclusive and diverse – for everyone, everywhere. The brand is committed to celebrating all skin tones,” it claims.
HUL also claims to have removed from Fair & Lovely’s packaging, words such as ‘fair/fairness’, ‘white/whitening’, and ‘light/lightening’.
“The company will continue to evolve its advertising, to feature women of different skin tones, representative of the variety of beauty across India,” the company said in a statement.
They further added that in addition to the changes to Fair & Lovely, the rest of the company’s skin care portfolio will also reflect the ‘new vision of positive beauty’.
Sanjiv Mehta, Chairman and Managing Director, HUL said, “We are making our skin care portfolio more inclusive and want to lead the celebration of a more diverse portrayal of beauty. In 2019, we removed the cameo with two faces as well as the shade guides from the packaging of Fair & Lovely and the brand communication progressed from fairness to glow which is a more holistic and inclusive measure of healthy skin. These changes were very well received by our consumers. We now announce that we will remove the word ‘Fair’ from our brand name Fair & Lovely. The new name is awaiting regulatory approvals, and the pack with the revised name will be available in the market in the next few months.”