While many of Dove’s ads have celebrated inclusivity, the company released a controversial and upsetting video the other day. And while the brand has taken down the ad and released an apology, the incident sparked an ongoing conversation about how advertisers should always make sure to properly represent women of color.
One of the models who took part in the shoot, Lola Ogunyemi, recently made her opinion on the ad were heard. In a wonderful essay penned for The Guardian, Ogunyemi expressed how it felt to gain the opportunity, and how things crumbled when the internet saw the ad through Facebook.
Ogunyemi started out the essay by telling her readers a bit about herself.
Ogunyemi said that when she was offered the “opportunity to represent my dark-skinned sisters in a global beauty brand,” she said yes right away. For the model, it was the perfect opportunity to remind women of color that they’re beautiful and, more importantly, valued.
Unfortunately, things took a turn when the model woke up to the internet’s outrage.
Ogunyemi said that if she knew how the images would be perceived after they were shot, she never would have accepted the opportunity. But she made sure to state that her time spent with Dove was nothing but positive.
We love the fact that Ogunyemi told the story from her perspective. Her reasons for shooting the ad were admirable, and we hope the backlash doesn’t prevent her from wanting to appear in future beauty campaigns.