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An Indian man works at Nivea?s manufacturing plant that was inaugurated Tuesday at Sanand in Gujarat, India, Tuesday, May 5, 2015. The German skin care company?s first plant in India currently employs about 200 people and is expected to make products for sale in India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and neighboring countries, a press release said. (AP Photo/Ajit Solanki)

Nivea's 'White is Purity' ad didn't go over well -- except with white nationalists


Skincare brand Nivea posted an ad for its invisible deodorant with the tagline "White is Purity" last weekend.

It drew intense criticism online almost immediately, which ultimately led to the company pulling the ad and apologizing on Tuesday.

But white nationalists embraced the ad, citing it as evidence that Nivea has "chosen our side."

The BBC captured the original, now-deleted ad.

The "White is Purity" ad was targeted at Nivea's Middle Eastern Facebook fans, the BBC reports. The post text read: "Keep it clean, keep bright. Don't let anything ruin it, #Invisible."

"We are deeply sorry to anyone who may take offense to this specific post. After realizing this post is misleading, it was immediately withdrawn," Nivea said in a statement.

Nivea has run into trouble with past ads as well. A 2011 ad featured a black man throwing a human head alongside the text "re-civilize yourself."

One Twitter user captured on the ad featuring Hitler and alt-right mascot Pepe the Frog.

One self-styled alt-right user called Nivea an official alt-right sponsor.

Critics said the ad was a sign of a problematic internal culture.

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