British Beauty – Going for GoldPosted: January 4, 2012
Olympic fever is certainly hotting up!
As mentioned in my previous blog I am really excited about the year ahead – and the impending Olympic Games is a major reason for this!
I was selected to be an official Games Maker in December last year, which absolutely made my day!! I truly believe that the Games will have a lasting legacy on London and on the nation and I am humbled to have been given a chance to be involved.
My first training session is in February….will let you know how it goes!!
In November last year the global FMCG company Proctor and Gamble (P&G), owners of brands such as Olay, Pantene, Ariel, Pampers, Max Factor and Gillette, announced that it will be supporting 11 British athletes leading up to and during the London 2012 Games and these athletes will act as ambassadors for the company.
The selection includes the incredibly talented female athletes Jeanette Kwakye, Keri-Anne Payne, Victoria Pendleton, Paula Radcliffe, Jessica Ennis and Jenna Randall.
Yesterday, Pantene, Olay and Max Factor announced partnerships with cyclist Victoria Pendleton, pentathlon champion Jessica Ennis and swimmer Keri-Anne Payne respectively.
All 3 athletes are worthy role models and are indeed beautiful women. I was particularly thrilled to see that Jessica Ennis (MBE) will be the face of Olay.
Ennis is of a mixed heritage background, the offspring of a Jamaican father and English mother. In a week where race relations in Britain is again front page news – with the conviction and sentencing of two of the murderers of the black teenager Stephen Lawrence dominating the headlines- I hope that Ennis’ partnership with Olay will serve to remind the nation that unity and cohesion can be and is a hallmark of our society and that we should not let the negative incidences overshadow this important fact.
However….I do have to admit that I was a little disappointed to see that 100m sprinter Jeanette Kwyake was not a part of the beauty ambassador group – after all Black women wash their hair, moisturise their skin and wear mascara too!
In fact, according to the market research agency Mintel, British women of ethnic origin spend up to 7 times more on cosmetics and toiletries that her Caucasian counterpart. A report published by the agency in 2009, stated that the market for Black or Asian beauty products in the UK remains a niche one, valued at £70m, or just 2% of the total market for women’s haircare, skincare and makeup, well below their percentage of the population. This is blamed partly on the fact that there is a “lack of commitment by mainstream companies to ethnic beauty needs”.
The report also identified that a lack of advertising spend and use of models that represent this market was a source of frustration for women of colour . In my eyes P&G missed a perfect opportunity to demonstrate that it is in touch with the needs of its consumers and to lead the way in showcasing the beauty of the multicultural Britain that we all reside in.
What are your thoughts? Let me know!