Literally whitewashing: Dove slammed for 'racist' ad
Personal care giant Dove has come under fire for a campaign ad critics have described as racist, in the latest controversy to hit the brand.
A series of three images advertised on Facebook appeared to show a black woman turning white after using the soap.
The third image shows the white woman undressing to reveal an Asian woman.
The racist advertising campaign caused a stir among social media users, who took to a range of platforms, including Facebook, Twitter and photo-sharing app Instagram to denounce the "disgusting" images.
"We should not see this kind of disrespect on social media," African-Saudi beauty blogger Abeer Sinder told The New Arab.
"This is an insult to women of colour and it's like saying you have to be white to be clean and pure," the blogger said.
Sinder is known for championing dark-skin tones among the beauty world in the Middle East, where society largely upholds racist undertones towards those with darker skin.
Meanwhile, others rejected claims of racism and attempted to justify the brand's "unfortunate" marketing.
"I think they meant it's for all skin types... it went from black to white to another race," said one Facebook user.
"The third woman is definitely not white but this was a bad deliverance of the message that all can use the soap," posted another.
Dove eventually issued an apology via social media.
"We deeply regret the offense it caused," the brand tweeted.
"An image we recently posted on Facebook missed the mark in representing women of colour thoughtfully," it added.
Social media users rejected the apology, pointing toward the brands' previous track record of racist advertisements.