A Korean skincare company has a pressing question for its American customers: Do you wanna be white?
This is a tagline for Elisha Coy’s Always Nuddy Complete Correction, or “CC” cream, as seen at New York's New Koreatown Plaza in Flushing, Queens.
Maybe the advertising team forgot that this ad was scheduled to run in America where minorities are hyper-aware of race, colorism (even if they don’t know that word specifically, they know how it feels to be discriminated based upon skin color) and kind of like being their own ethnicity. Or maybe Elisha Coy's international marketing team hoped that consumers would care more about aspirational pale skin tones than a message implicitly telling them that their natural skin color just isn't enough? Someone should share with the brand that U.S. advertisers sell European beauty standards through imagery — like rarely including ethnic models in major runway shows during Fashion Week — rather than outright demeaning ad copy.
Noonchi, a Korean culture website, bitingly called this flub the "perfect advertisement—it sells an impossible dream while also making its potential consumers feel worse about themselves."
Image via Noonchi and Elisha Coy.