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L'Oréal Will Be Removing Words Like 'Whitening' From Skincare Products

As global demonstrations and protests surrounding racial inequality and anti-racism rhetoric persist, there's been a call to action and pressure for corporations to reflect on and reevaluate their own systemic racism.

L'Oréal recently announced they will be making some changes to their skincare in an effort to be more inclusive and create social change.

L'Oréal announced in a press release that they will be removing words like '"whitening" from their skincare labels.

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"The L'Oreal Group has decided to remove the words white/whitening, fair/fairness, light/lightening from all its skin evening products," they said.

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You may not recognize descriptors like that in their North American products, but these types of products are prevalent in Asian countries.

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Skin bleaching is a common beauty practice that San Jose State University's assistant professor of Asian American studies Joanne L. Rondilla wrote in her book Is Lighter Better?: Skin-Tone Discrimination Among Asian Americans is a way to signal one's social standing.

“Having light skin implied that one was a woman of high class, education, and leisure,” she wrote. “A woman’s light skin meant she did not need to work outdoors to make a living."

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L'Oréal also recently came under fire after they expressed their solidarity with the Black community and their stance "against injustice of any kind."

Back in 2017, black trans model Munroe Bergdorf was let go from L'Oréal after she wrote a Facebook post condemning racism amid the death of an anti-racist protestor at the Charlottesville, VA white supremacist rally.

Munroe, as well as a slew of supporters, saw L'Oréal as being hypocritical, simply performing ally-ship to save face.

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But, action speaks louder than words, as they say. Not only is Munroe Bergdorf back with L'Oréal to help the company move forward, learn, and grow, but they're also reevaluating their products and how they contribute to the perpetuation of racial divides and injustices.

L'Oréal now joins Band Aid in working to make their products inclusive.

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