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In addition to singer Cheryl and TV host Katie Piper, the cosmetic company L’Oréal Paris in the campaign #YoursTruly True Match also hired Munroe Bergdorf, a 29-year-old fashion designer and DJ from London.
Given that the aim of the latest campaign from French producer of beauty products is to celebrate diversity, Munroe, they say, was an ideal choice for one specific reason. This Brit is a transgender person, the first in history to which L’Oréal offered a cooperation agreement.
“I was born as a man, but since I was 18 I live as a woman. The process of transformation, ie gender change, ended when I was 25. I was a victim of prejudice, but now I have only one mission – to fight them,” Bergdorf said.
Initially, all praised her courage and determination, but things quickly shifted after L’Oréal’s new ambassador posted a controversial status on Facebook.
“Honestly I don’t have energy to talk about the racial violence of white people any more. Yes ALL white people,” Bergdorf wrote in the post. “Because most of ya’ll don’t even realise or refuse to acknowledge that your existence, privilege and success as a race is built on the backs, blood and death of people of colour. Your entire existence is drenched in racism. From micro-aggressions to terrorism, you guys built the blueprint for this s***.”
Her harsh words divided the public – some accused her of hypocrisy, while some even called for a boycott of L’Oreal’s products
Days after L’Oreal learned of the news about the racist comment, the company fired Bergdorf, stating her comments “are at odds with our values, so we have decided to end our partnership with her”.
In response to this, Bergdorf also urged a boycott of the company, claiming her words were taken out of context, and she also called out the company for firing her for speaking out about the origins of racism.