"I need a product that I can really trust to restore my skin's natural fairness," says the subject in Nivea's African advertisement, which is being broadcast in Nigeria, Ghana, Cameroon and Senegal. The TV spot is promoting the beauty brand's "Natural Fairness" moisturizer, and promises the product will "visibly lighten" your skin.
Bergdorf criticized Nivea's racist commercial on Instagram: "Perpetuating the notion that fairer skin is more beautiful, more youthful is so damaging and plays into the racist narrative so prevalent in the beauty industry, that whiteness or light skin is the standard that we should all strive for," she said, reminding advertisers that they have the power to change this norm.
She continued, condemning whitening and lightening creams, saying they're not only physically damaging, but also ethically wrong. "Empowerment is not too much to ask for. All black skin is beautiful, no exceptions, so celebrate us as we are instead of asking us to adhere to unattainable and racist ideals."