Unilever evolves skin care portfolio to embrace a more inclusive vision of beauty

London/Rotterdam - Unilever announced today the next step in the evolution of its skin care portfolio to a more inclusive vision of beauty – which includes the removal of the words ‘fair/fairness’, ‘white/whitening’, and ‘light/lightening’ from its products’ packs and communication. As part of this decision, the Fair & Lovely brand name will be changed in the next few months.

Unilever logo on the entrance of deodorant factory in Jiutepec Mexico

Sunny Jain, President Beauty & Personal Care, explains, “We are fully committed to having a global portfolio of skin care brands that is inclusive and cares for all skin tones, celebrating greater diversity of beauty. We recognise that the use of the words ‘fair’, ‘white’ and ‘light’ suggest a singular ideal of beauty that we don’t think is right, and we want to address this. As we’re evolving the way that we communicate the skin benefits of our products that deliver radiant and even tone skin, it’s also important to change the language we use.”

“We have been working on the evolution of our Fair & Lovely brand, which is sold across Asia, progressively moving to a more inclusive vision of beauty that celebrates skin glow. We have changed the advertising, communication and – more recently – the packaging in South Asia, and we think it’s important that we now share the next step that we have been working on: changing the brand name. We will also continue to evolve our advertising, to feature women of different skin tones, representative of the variety of beauty across India and other countries. We want Fair & Lovely to become a brand that celebrates glowing and radiant skin, regardless of skin tone,” adds Jain.

The brand’s advertising has been changing since 2014, to a message of women empowerment. Fair & Lovely upholds principles that no association should be made between skin tone and a person’s achievement, potential or worth. We are aware that historic advertising is available on the internet; these ads are not aligned with the current values of the brand.

In 2019, we reflected this evolution on the Fair & Lovely pack in India, removing before-and-after impressions and shade guides that could indicate a transformation; and we have progressed all communication of product benefits towards glow, even tone, skin clarity and radiance.

As part of this journey to embrace and reflect a more inclusive vision of beauty, the next significant step is to update its brand name, which will be shared once several legal and regulatory requirements are met in each country where the brand is available. This registration process is already underway, and we expect to be able to unveil the new brand name within the next few months.

Fair & Lovely has never been, and is not, a skin bleaching product. The brand uses a combination of vitamin B3, glycerine, UVA and UVB sunscreens. This was a much-needed move from harmful chemicals like mercury and bleach, which consumers were using. The brand has been progressively changing its formulation, and includes other vitamins like B6, C & E, allantoin, known to improve skin health and protect the skin from external aggressors, UV rays and environmental pollution. The product is designed to improve skin barrier function, improve skin firmness and smoothen skin texture - all of which help enhance radiance and glow, as currently represented in advertising and communication.

The evolution to a more inclusive vision of beauty that celebrates and cares for all skin tones, and no longer uses the words ‘white/whitening’, ‘light/lightening or ‘fair/fairness’, will be a policy for all Unilever’s Beauty & Personal Care brands.

Additional information about Fair and Lovely Foundation

Connecting women to opportunity

Career guidance. High-quality education. They are vital elements to building a career and essential to empowering women. That's especially true where socio-cultural, infrastructural or economic barriers stand in women's way – barriers such as gender stereotyping, safety concerns about studying outside the home, or harmful norms about household responsibilities.

Impact at Scale

The Fair & Lovely Career Foundation was set up in 2003 to offer women scholarships to pursue their education. In 2017, it launched a mobile-friendly career and education platform www.fairandlovelyfoundation.in as a holistic solution. This mobile platform offers career guidance as well as a curated selection of courses. The courses are chosen from well-regarded, high-quality digital education partners such as edX.org (founded by Harvard and MIT), the IT skills training firm, NIIT Limited, and English Edge, an English language training specialist.

By the end of 2019, over one million people had registered to access skills and training through the platform, including 600,000 women, with 350,000 career tests already completed.

As with the rebrand of Fair & Lovely, we will be also announcing Fair & Lovely Foundation’s new name later this year.

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Safe Harbour

Where relevant, these actions are subject to the appropriate consultations and approvals.

This announcement may contain forward-looking statements, including 'forward-looking statements' within the meaning of the United States Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Words such as 'will', 'aim', 'expects', 'anticipates', 'intends', 'looks', 'believes', 'vision', or the negative of these terms and other similar expressions of future performance or results, and their negatives, are intended to identify such forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are based upon current expectations and assumptions regarding anticipated developments and other factors affecting the Unilever Group (the 'Group'). They are not historical facts, nor are they guarantees of future performance.

Because these forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties, there are important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by these forward-looking statements. Among other risks and uncertainties, the material or principal factors which could cause actual results to differ materially are: Unilever's global brands not meeting consumer preferences; Unilever's ability to innovate and remain competitive; Unilever's investment choices in its portfolio management; inability to find sustainable solutions to support long-term growth; the effect of climate change on Unilever's business; customer relationships; the recruitment and retention of talented employees; disruptions in our supply chain; the cost of raw materials and commodities; the production of safe and high quality products; secure and reliable IT infrastructure; successful execution of acquisitions, divestitures and business transformation projects; economic and political risks and natural disasters; financial risks; failure to meet high and ethical standards; and managing regulatory, tax and legal matters. These forward-looking statements speak only as of the date of this announcement. Except as required by any applicable law or regulation, the Group expressly disclaims any obligation or undertaking to release publicly any updates or revisions to any forward-looking statements contained herein to reflect any change in the Group's expectations with regard thereto or any change in events, conditions or circumstances on which any such statement is based. Further details of potential risks and uncertainties affecting the Group are described in the Group's filings with the London Stock Exchange, Euronext Amsterdam and the US Securities and Exchange Commission, including in the Annual Report on Form 20-F 2018 and the Unilever Annual Report and Accounts 2018.

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