STYLE

Swedish Tanning Company Emmaatan Accused Of 'Shaming Dark Skin' And 'Selling Blackface'

03/15/2016 12:40 EDT

Sure, we all love self-tanning. Who doesn't enjoy obtaining a natural sun-kissed glow without the damaging UV rays? Clearly, many, because the tanning industry is booming.

But the industry just took an alarming turn when one Swedish company was accused of selling products that are making customers transform into a whole new race...

Doing some tanlines for a living 🙌🏾

A photo posted by •Spraytan Specialist• (@emmaatan_) on


Emmaatan, the Stockholm-based tanning company owned by Emma Patissier Alm, is currently facing major backlash for "selling black face in a bottle" with its line of "dark chocolate," "dark ash," and "caramel" spray tans, which are all completely sold out on their website right now.

emmaatan products

Many bloggers and Tumblr users are pointing out the major issues with the company. BlackGirlLongHair writes how problematic the Swedish brand is, as "shaming dark skin is a foundational tenet of many beauty norms — not just in the United States, but worldwide."

Clutch Magazine also weighed in on the issue writing that Emmaatan was selling blackness "without the burden." Twitter and Tumblr users agree, with one saying, "It’s funny that they think it’s ok for them to be black but not for black people to be black."


After removing their Instagram account for hours, the company, with 18,000 followers, returned to the social media app to explain Patissier Alm's side of the story.

"I'm in chock (sic) for the response I've gotten and may have responded and commented the wrong way because I expect Ppl (sic) to know how Spraytan works . I've got a lot of feedback and mostly been called 'black face' and racist. Ppl looks (sic) at my pic I've posted and without a blink assuming we desire to look black, I understand why it might seem that way and I apologise for the miss understanding (sic) my pic may have approached."

I'm a small tanning business in Sweden and I've been working with beauty for 2 years in August. I'm a hard working owner of emmaatan and love working with beauty cause I get to appreciate all types of looks and figures. It's a difficult job because you always gonna hear different opinions, positive and negative. I'm in chock for the response I've gotten and may have responded and commented the wrong way because I expect Ppl to know how Spraytan works . I've got a lot of feedback and mostly been called "black face" and racist. Ppl looks at my pic I've posted and without a blink assuming we desire to look black, I understand why it might seem that way and I apologise for the miss understanding my pic may have approached. Tanning is very popular these days because of the cancer factor, everybody is talking about how dangerous the sun beds is and therefore looking for a healthier option. I will never understand how "black ppl" is facing the world and it's sad to know ppl don't get respect just because of their looks. I do feel I need to explain the factor of a spraytan, first of all it never gets black, a lot of my pic is a result of a few sec after applying the tan. fake tan always gets really dark because of the activation of the result of the color. 20-30% washes of and the color will get much much lighter and won't look as "black" as it seems on my pic. My color isn't going for black it's going for a natural golden tan when you wash it off. I never want my customers to look un natural or to dark since we usually have a lighter skin tone . You also have to understand I have ppl with dark and pale skin tone and therefore look darker or lighter. I love all skin types and that's why I think ppl should be able to choose for what they feel good in, as long as you respect ppl around you. I understand a lot of you don't agree with the tan industry but I don't want you to think we want to go for a crazy black tan, we don't! At least not all of us. I can't speak for everyone but I personally are trying to keep it natural. Please reconsider calling ppl names, it's not helping to communicate and trying to understand. 👆🏽👆🏽RESULT OF BEFORE AND AFTER SHOWER

A photo posted by •Spraytan Specialist• (@emmaatan_) on


She continues, "I do feel I need to explain the factor of a spraytan, first of all it never gets black, a lot of my pic is a result of a few sec after applying the tan. fake tan always gets really dark because of the activation of the result of the color...My color isn't going for black it's going for a natural golden tan when you wash it off. I never want my customers to look un natural or to (sic) dark since we usually have a lighter skin tone . You also have to understand I have ppl with dark and pale skin tone and therefore look darker or lighter."


She concludes, "I love all skin types and that's why I think ppl should be able to choose for what they feel good in, as long as you respect ppl around you. I understand a lot of you don't agree with the tan industry but I don't want you to think we want to go for a crazy black tan, we don't! At least not all of us. I can't speak for everyone but I personally are trying to keep it natural. Please reconsider calling ppl names, it's not helping to communicate and trying to understand."

Love this new arrival mousse. In stock next week 👌💕

A photo posted by •Spraytan Specialist• (@emmaatan_) on


While her intentions might be there, the people of the Internet are still not buying it.

emmaatan

But it looks like the Swedish company is back at it and continuing on after the backlash. Now the question is: will their business boom after all the criticism? We'll have to see.

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