Anushka Sharma is a leading Bollywood actress who has just done a deal with Nivea. Although Bollywood films are getting very popular around the world I think it is her followers in India that appeals to Nivea and to whom they are hoping she will help to promote their product.
And what a product! It is an antiperspirant that also contains, or claims to contain, a skin lightening agent. This is to solve the problem of excessive armpit pigmentation. Now I don’t know about you, but armpit pigmentation has never been a problem that has troubled me much. Obviously I am not an Indian woman, so maybe it is a problem for some of them. Much as I would love to go, I have never been to India. But there are lots of people of Indian extraction living here in the UK. They don’t seem to be particularly different to native English people anatomically. So, unless someone tells me otherwise, I am going to assume that it isn’t a problem for them either.
Which brings me to my conclusion. This appears to be an attempt by a big multinational to get people to worry about something that was never a problem in the first place. Well that is what big companies do. There isn’t much you can do about it, but I suggest you worry about things that really matter to you not what the ad man wants you to worry about.
But the final irony is that I don’t think it will even do much for this non-existent problem. The active ingredient is liquorice, which has only the mildest of skin lightening effects. I doubt you’ll notice it. Certainly the people who reviewed it on MakeUpAlley didn’t.
Ignore the advert. Don’t buy the product. Your armpits are fine.
Emma and Shari in the comments and @N4Nicole on Twitter have all made the point that for people with darker skin this is indeed a genuine problem. I withdraw the scathing tone of what I wrote earlier. But I still think that this particular advert plays on people’s insecurities and that the product itself is unlikely to do much to solve to the issue anyway. Thanks for the feedback, it is a real education writing this blog.