A skin chart by Boots has come under fire for “implying brown and black skin is abnormal”.
The chart, featuring a list of skin types and the SPF that should be used depending on where customers are in the world, was spotted in the sun cream section of Boots.
One of the skin types featured on the chart was listed as ‘normal’, while those below it were labelled ‘olive’, ‘brown’ and ‘black’. Meanwhile the skin types above it were listed as ‘fair’ and ‘sensitive’.
Twitter user Simran shared a photo of the chart online, asking: “Just wondering what constitutes as a ‘normal’ skin colour and why brown and black is implied to be abnormal?”
Boots has since apologised for any offence caused and said the chart will be removed immediately.
The chart was particularly confusing because it listed ‘sensitive’ and ‘normal’, which are skin types, followed by ‘fair’, ‘olive’, ‘brown’ and ‘black’ which are skin shades.
People also questioned why brown and black people were being encouraged to wear a lower SPF in hotter climates.
According to the NHS, “people with naturally brown or black skin are less likely to get skin cancer, as darker skin has some protection against UV rays”.
But skin cancer can still occur - especially types not related to UV, for example on non-pigmented parts of the body like the soles of the feet.
Simran’s tweet was met with some confusion...
But mainly fury.
A Boots spokesperson told HuffPost UK: “We’d like to thank our customers for bringing this isolated incident to our attention.
“We can confirm the content featured was not official Boots show material and we have removed the chart immediately.
“We apologise for any offence this has caused.”