Dear belVita,

I do not consume you by choice, but I am familiar with your brand because it is what American Airlines serves as its snack on the plane. I have a very limited knowledge of your company as a whole, but quite frankly I want to know nothing more than what I already know about you.

I see that you’re making strides to appeal to a Latinx/Spanish-speaking consumer, not just by dubbing your commercial and hoping it sticks, but by actually casting Latinxs.

Still, your latest commercial is terrible. It makes me wonder if you bothered to do a focus group and/or study to figure out your marketing for this, or if you even bothered to hire Latinxs for your marketing department when you decided to target Latinxs. Either way, let me break this down for you: Perpetuating the idea that European traits are, in fact, superior and preferable than our indigenous and/or mestizo traits is outlandish and, quite frankly, blatant colorism bordering on racism.

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You portray a white male with light hair and chiseled physique as the superior choice, and then have the audacity to place a brown-eyed, brown hair, brown-skinned man as the poor choice. Please do no forget that our brothers, dads, uncles, and our grandfathers look like this.

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THIS is why young Latinxs dye their hair blonde, wear colored contacts, bleach their dark body hairs, and start Americanizing their last names. You have, through commercials like this, perpetuated the idea that our brownness is inferior. You could not have been anymore clearer in this commercial.

Not only that but THIS is why Latinas are encouraged to date lighter-skinned Latinxs, and those prized white guys. We are constantly told to mejorar la raza, because we are fed this garbage on a daily basis. You need to be held accountable, belVita, and if for some reason you are in fact hiring Latinxs in your marketing department, then this letter goes to them as well: Do better, your self-hatred is showing and you will be known for teaching self-hatred to our brown children.

We see right through you and we are not biting. It is corny and it is dated, and we are expecting more, so educate yourself and say this out loud at least 50 times before going to bed tonight, to yourself, and to your children: Brown IS beautiful.


A Woke Brown Girl