JOHANNESBURG – Beauty and health retailer Clicks has come under fire for an advert which is seen as prejudiced against black natural hair.
In a campaign run on its website, the company published an image of black hair, which is labelled as dry and damaged, while an example of white hair is described as fine and flat.
The juxtaposed illustrations have sparked widespread outrage on social media, with the company accused of being racist.
Miss Universe Zozbini Tunzi was quick to air her views calling the advert as disrespectful to black lives.
Not only is this disrespectful to black lives, it is also evidence of an absence of representation and diversity within the organization. And we are talking about a South Africa with a population of about 80% black people (stand to be corrected). No ways💔 @Clicks_SA https://t.co/HWtfH40HCY
— Zozibini Tunzi (@zozitunzi) September 4, 2020
The last time some multinational retail store undermined black people like this there were major consequences. Clicks is applying for consequences. This is unacceptable. pic.twitter.com/VexJROqbin
— Floyd Shivambu (@FloydShivambu) September 4, 2020
Clicks have now taken the ad down and apologised, saying it is a strong advocate of natural hair.
We would like to issue an unequivocal apology. We have removed the images which go against everything we believe in. We do not condone racism and we are strong advocates of natural hair. We are deeply sorry and will put in place stricter measures on our website.
— Clicks (@Clicks_SA) September 4, 2020