Thursday, June 25, 2009

L'Oreal guilty of saying non to noir and other couleurs

L'Oréal, the French cosmetics giant, whose advertising campaigns proclaim "because you're worth it", was found guilty of racial discrimination for considering black, Arab and Asian women unworthy of selling its shampoo.

France's highest court was told that the group had sought an all-white team of sales staff to promote Fructis Style, a haircare product made by Garnier, L'Oréal's beauty division.

The word went out that Garnier's hostesses should be BBR — "bleu, blanc, rouge" — the colours of the French flag. The expression is widely recognised in the French recruitment world as a code for white French people born to white French parents, a court was told, in effect excluding the four million or so members of ethnic minorities in France.

La Cour de Cassation, the equivalent of the US Supreme Court, said that the policy was illegal under French employment law, upholding a ruling given by the Paris Appeal Court in 2007.

The judgment was a significant blow to the image of the world's biggest cosmetics group, which has spent millions of dollars in global advertising campaigns featuring stars such as Andie MacDowell, Eva Longoria, Penélope Cruz and Claudia Schiffer.

That image already suffered a battering when L'Oréal executives were forced to deny claims that they had lightened the singer Beyoncé Knowles's skin for a campaign last year. The ruling also hinted at widespread prejudice among French shoppers since L'Oréal believed that they were more likely to buy shampoo from white sales staff, the court was told. Read more...
Let me get this straight: Women of color are unacceptable as L'Oreal employees, but good enough to buy the company's shampoos, lipsticks and skin creams. They don't wish to pay us, but want our purchases.
Angry silence...
From now on, as far as L'Oreal is concerned, this black woman will take her green to a company that appreciates me as more than a consumer.
Want some shampoo? Support a sister trying to get her business on, while providing natural products that are nourishing to black hair (no nasty petroleum). I am addicted to Oyin Handmade products. Check out their site, created by amazing mixtress Jamyla Bennu. It's better for your hair, body, soul and self-esteem than L'Oreal.


RMJ said...

L'Oreal is not just L'Oreal - it owns:

L'Oréal Paris, Garnier, Maybelline New York, Softsheen Carson, CCB Paris, L'Oréal Professionnel, Kérastase, Redken, Matrix, Mizani, Shu Uemura Art of Hair, Lancôme, Biotherm, Helena Rubinstein, Kiehl's, Shu Uemura, Giorgio Armani, Ralph Lauren, Cacharel, Viktor & Rolf, Diesel, YSL Beauté, Vichy, La Roche Posay, innéov, Skinceuticals, Sanoflore, and The Body Shop.

Amazing, right?
The list above comes from Siditty.

Sassy J said...

Tami, you know, how about I just wear a bag over my head! I mean, really! This is sad, but not surprising.

As far as the product lines RMJ referenced (thanks!), I no longer use Maybelline even though I primarily used the mascara, I don't use perms so Softsheen Carson is out (they are a sponsor for the Steve Harvey Morning Show), my momma uses Lancome, I ABHOR Ralph Lauren, and The Body Shop is too damn expensive (though smells good while walking past it in the mall).

S said...

Argh! I've been using Garnier hair products exclusively for several years now. I hate having to find a new line.

Anonymous said...

@RMJ Noooooooooooo, not The Body Shop! I can walk away from Mizani but the Body Shop? Ya'll are killin' me, killin me I say. But I will do it on principle. We've gotta learn to shop our interests and stop putting money into the hands of those who think we're less than. I just placed my first order with Oyin. They had better be good Tami now that you got me all shea blocked from The Body Shop.


Lady C said...

L'Oreal is a little behind in the game. The US cosmetics companies did the same thing for decades even though they knew AA consumers bought more of their products than any other ethnic group.

It like Cristal and Timberlands dissing the black musicians after they made a fortune off them for the free advertisement those kids put out there just by drinking that swill and wearing those boots.

Nia said...

I think I'm using up my last bottle of L'Oreal shampoo. Thanks for the information.


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