This week, Unilever announced it will eliminate the word ‘normal’ from all of their beauty and personal care brands’ packaging and advertising, as part of the launch of their new Positive Beauty vision and strategy.
The decision to remove ‘normal’ is one of many steps that we are taking to challenge narrow beauty ideals, as we work towards helping to end discrimination and advocating for a more inclusive vision of beauty. It comes as global research into people’s experiences of the beauty industry reveals that using ‘normal’ to describe hair or skin makes most people feel excluded.
The 10,000-person study, which was commissioned by Unilever, was conducted across nine countries1. It found that:
- More than half of people (56%) think that the beauty and personal care industry can make people feel excluded.
- People want to see the beauty and personal care industry focusing more on making people feel better, than just looking better (74%).
- More than half of people (52%) say they now pay more attention to a company’s stance on societal issues before buying products.
- Seven in ten people agree that using the word ‘normal’ on product packaging and advertising has a negative impact. For younger people – those aged 18-35 – this rises to eight in ten.
Sunny Jain, President Beauty & Personal Care, said: “With one billion people using our beauty and personal care products every day, and even more seeing our advertising, our brands have the power to make a real difference to people’s lives. As part of this, we are committed to tackling harmful norms and stereotypes and shaping a broader, far more inclusive definition of beauty.
“We know that removing ‘normal’ from our products and packaging will not fix the problem alone, but it is an important step forward. It’s just one of a number of actions we are taking as part of our Positive Beauty vision, which aims not only to do less harm, but more good for both people and the planet.
“With more consumers than ever rewarding brands which take action on the social and environmental issues they care about, we believe that Positive Beauty will make us a stronger, and more successful business.”
In addition to removing the word ‘normal’, Unilever will not digitally alter a person’s body shape, size, proportion or skin colour in its brand advertising, and will increase the number of advertisements portraying people from diverse groups who are under-represented.
For the full release and more information on Unilever’s commitment, click here.