Nivea is under fire for an ad promoting the phrase 'white is purity'

Nivea is under fire for an ad featuring the phrase "white is purity" across an image of a woman wearing a white robe.

The ad, which promoted the German skin-care company's Black & White Invisible Deodorant, was posted to Nivea's Facebook page with the caption "Keep it clean, keep bright. Don't let anything ruin it, #Invisible."

Nivea was forced to delete the ad following an uproar from critics on social media accusing the company of racism, The New York Times reports.

The company apologized for the ad in a post on Facebook, saying, it was "not meant to be racially insensitive."

"We sincerely apologize," the company said. "Diversity, tolerance and equal opportunity are fundamental values of Nivea."

This is the second time Nivea has been accused of featuring racist ads.

In 2011, the company released an ad showing a nicely dressed black man holding the head of a man with an Afro. Nivea was forced to remove that ad at the time following a similar uproar, but images of it were resurrected on social media this week following the "white is purity" backlash.

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