Monday, October 8, 2012

Estee Lauder Pink Washes Their Message

20 years ago, Evelyn Lauder began handing out pink ribbons at make-up counters to raise awareness for breast cancer. Her efforts culminated in the first National Breast Cancer Awareness Month and the unfortunate tidal wave of pink slime oozing all October long ever since.

Mrs. Lauder died last year from ovarian cancer but her legacy lives on. She's the founder of The Breast Cancer Research Fund, an organization which boasts that 91 cents of every dollar donated is "directed towards research and awareness programs."

I'm not exactly sure how that all officially plays out but for all the pink washing and meaningless crap that is hawked by vulture companies preying on our bleeding hearts for profits (check out these supremely tacky NFL Rainboots), the Estee Lauder Company seems fairly devoted to honoring the efforts of its former leading lady.  The short video below featuring celebrity spokesmodel Elizabeth Hurley highlights their global social media campaign aimed at finding a cure.

While I had little doubt that the company's R&D teams have spent months conceiving some garish pink GWP's to promote both the cause as well as their bottom line, I also truly believed the corporation's leaders felt strongly about the issue and eradicating this disease.

But then I came across this blurb on Ecouterre and I was bewildered. If this is true then this serves as a prime example of the disconnect between intent and execution.

Estée Lauder has a "brilliant way" to show your support of breast-cancer awareness: lipstick in your choice of "Evelyn Wildly Pink" or"Lavish Pink" in a pink croc-embossed clutch. (The company will donate 20 percent of the suggested retail price of its Pink Ribbon Collection to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation.) The irony? The rosy-hued wares are chockfull of reproductive toxins, hormone-disrupting chemicals, and carcinogens.  As a member of the Personal Care Products Council (formerly known as the Cosmetics, Toiletries and Fragrance Association), Estée Lauder also opposed a 2005 California bill that required cosmetics firms to disclose their use of chemicals linked to cancer or birth defects.  

Your thoughts?

1 comment:

  1. The "unfortunate tidal wave of pink slime oozing all October long ever since" -- best description of pinkwashing I've read! Love it!