When Sorry Doesn’t Cut It

Fay Rose tells Italian brand WYCON to shove their apology in the bin, together with their cosmetics.

"Grunge Nails" by pumpkincat210 is licensed under CC BY

WYCON cosmetics has come under fire for calling one of their black nail polishes ‘Thick as a N***a’. Thousands took to social media, outraged by this latest example of a big brand being racist. Three whole days later WYCON reacted with this lame apology: ‘Aware of our social and global responsibility we are deeply sorry for the incident. We strongly believe beauty has no gender, race or religion as already shown in our previous campaigns…’ Blah blah blaaaah! Please spare us the BS.

The apology was far from universally accepted, with both white and black people posting comments like: ‘Thanks for letting us know how you feel, great marketing team btw’ – ‘Disgusting company’ – ‘Shame on you’ – and my favourite: “F*** your apology!”

They even had the cheek to say they took the name from a song lyric by DBangz, as if that makes it acceptable.

There’s been a long-standing debate about whether or not it’s OK for people who aren’t black to use the n-word. Personally I don’t think anyone should use it, black or white, and I ask you this: if a word is historically associated with hatred and oppression, and has caused so much pain,  why would you ever want to use it anyway?

I think I speak for the majority of black people when I say, ‘enough is enough’. First there was the DOVE advert in which a woman appeared to want to swap her black skin for white skin; then came H&M with their racist ‘monkey’ hoodie;  and now we have WYCON! It would appear that this racist approach to branding is becoming somewhat of a trend, or perhaps – given the amount of publicity it generates – it’s a deliberate marketing strategy. Either way, how dare these companies continuously insult our race?

I think it’s time we made a stand, and stopped buying from these brands. We should stop accepting racism as a part of life, and start doing things for ourselves. We need to come together as a race and create our own cosmetics, our own brand, our own empire – and let these brands take all their apologies and shove them somewhere! 

Grunge Nails” by pumpkincat210 is licensed under CC