What is Rainbow Washing? And Why should you Prevent It During Pride Month

Every time June ( Pride Month ) comes around, lots and lots of manufacturers change their logo to a “rainbowed” version as if this were a competition. But is this practice really effective for their image? And, moreover, is this really helping the particular LGBTQIA+ Community? Let’ s i9000 answer the question and reflect on that for a second.

Being diverse is not just a impulse from brands. As we have progressed as a society, we determined how the world is full of inequities. Today, many agencies and countries are working to reduce these problems. It is not the coincidence that the United Nations (UN) has chosen gender equality and reduced inequality as one of the new goals for sustainable development .

When we talk about the struggles of the LGBTQIA+ community, representation in the media is something very common nowadays. As a consequence, brand names can feel forced to reflect this reality in their communication. You know, everybody wants to be “trendy”.

However , these attempts to look or appear more “diverse” or “inclusive” can fall on the superficiality and even easily simplify the difficulties. When this phenomenon happens, the LGBTQIA+ neighborhood call it “ Range Washing ” or even “ Pinkwashing, ” an issue that companies should seek to avoid.

Let us think. Why do brands choose to show themselves because diverse?

Younger generations tend to be more aware of some of the world’ h problems. Thus, they are more willing to support more auistic causes. And that is how diversity and inclusion have become one of the main interests of these new generations. For example , according to Deloitte , 83% of millennials are more engaged whenever they think their company encourages an inclusive culture.

Because no one wants to stay behind, the decision-makers of large enterprises are looking for ways to meet the rising expectations of the common audience. Sometimes, they take a good approach and other times they do not.

For example , within a survey conducted by Adobe , 38% of respondents said they were more likely to consume products and services from brands that show diversity in their ads. Moreover, 34% have boycotted a company at least once because they don’ t feel their details were represented in the companies’ actions.

Also, it is important to understand that being inclusive has become something which has a positive impact on businesses. According to McKinsey , companies in the best quartile of gender diversity are 15% more likely to have financial returns above their national industry median. Companies in the top quartile associated with racial/ethnic diversity are 35% more likely to have financial results above their national market median.

The growth associated with rainbow washing 

First, let’ s get to know what Offers a Washing is. As described by ThisIsGendered , it refers to the act of making use of or adding rainbow colours and/or imagery to advertising, apparel, accessories, landmarks, et cetera, in order to indicate progressive support for LGBTQIA+ equality (and earn consumer credibility) – but with a minimum of effort or pragmatic result.

In this line of ideas, it is simple to see how numerous brands make changes for their logo during the Pride 30 days.    

Nonetheless, your decision to alter branding resources is not done randomly. In theory, modifying central branding devices will help people to remember the traditional logo more easily.

But when everyone does it, all the time, often for the same reason, and over the exact same period, is the effect still so impressive? Will anyone even notice any longer, given every other brand has the same rainbow hue?

A good example of rainbow washing

A very polemic case of rainbow washing happened with Barilla, the multinational food company. Everything started back in 2013 when the CEO, Guido Barilla, mentioned in a reside interview that will he would certainly not make a commercial with a homosexual family . Obviously, the comment caused global outrage, generating the hashtag #boycotbarilla.

The crisis was a catalyst for talking about Diversity plus Inclusion, and it took nearly five years to clean the company’ s reputation. However , the criticism from the LGBTQIA+ community is still there. Barilla is certainly still offender of pink washing . After the homophobic comments of the CEO, adding a offers a to the package is not enough to show solidarity with the neighborhood.

This cautionary tale shows us that if we really want to enter the “LGBTQIA+ friendly wave” we have to make sure to do it with the right intentions.    

Diversity done right 

Fortunately, we can still see the right examples of how to be really diverse. Adobe has launched an initiative that compasses its own company culture, hiring diverse talent from a excellent variety of backgrounds. They also take part in forums, conferences and donate to fundraising activities.

One of their greatest initiatives had been Adobe For All Summit launched in 2019. The technique of the event was to share best practices and updates about diversity and inclusion tactical progress.      

The particular lesson is: before waving any flag, first you will need cohesion inside your company via tangible actions by creating a culture among all degrees of your organization.

Other forms of colour washing

The problem doesn’ t only apply to Pride Month. There are other forms of color cleaning beyond  rainbow washing.  

First, let’ s understand color washing as an umbrella term for your profit-driven practice of corporations of deceptively communicating unsubstantiated values in products and services to be able to appeal and market them better to socially and eco aware consumers, as defined by the line of The particular Sustainable Fashion Matterz.

With this order of tips, we can set the principal methods of color washing:


It is extremely commonly used from LGBTQIA+ events. However , it can also be related to woman empowerment, where it encourages a feminist facade while wearing exploitative or unequal salaries towards women.


This particular speaks about delivering misleading messages about sustainability practices. It happens when a brand calls itself “eco-friendly” but still fails at being sustainable in their processes.      


This phenomenon has been very common during the Black Lives Matter debate during 2020. It appeals to Black, Brown, Indigenous or people of color. It happens a lot when a company appears to be encouraging of this community but doesn’ t implement internal practices to actually empower them.    


It really is when a brand is somehow related to a tragedy plus doesn’ t take obligation for what happened. An example of this is exactly what happened at Rana Plaza Collapse , where the building collapsed due to a number of engineering and management failures. The tragedy reflected the importance of restructuring the Fashion Market. The criticism came when, even yrs after the tragedy , the retailers involved still hadn’ t compensated the sufferers or their families, nor taken action to improve the office infrastructure.

What are we, from Rock Articles , doing to not get into color washing?

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) have been part of Rock Content’s beliefs since 2013, when we had been founded. In 2019, all of us officially structured our Social Impact and Diversity, Equity and Addition areas.

From Rock Content , we treat the uniqueness of each person with due fairness and respect, we listen carefully for all voices, and we act in order to transform realities beyond the employees and consumers.  

For us, social impact means sharing knowledge to underrepresented groups that are in social and economic vulnerable jobs — with focus on gender, race, disabilities and affective-sexual orientation, among others. It is possible with the promotion of education, allowing inclusion in the market, and ensuring equity in the business. With these endeavours, we promote more opportunities for employability and also socioeconomic growth.

In 2021, Rock Content impacted 20, 000 people by donating Rock University scholarships to underrepresented groups. Today, 52. 8% of Rock Content ’s group is composed of women, and 49% of leadership positions are held by women.

Within the same year Rock Content took another major action towards accelerating social alter. Through Promise 1% , Rock Content committed to donate 1% associated with it’s equity to education and learning and employability initiatives plus projects.

Avoid color washing

So , with all Rock Content ’s knowledge about how to really advertise social change, here are some methods we can share for you to prevent falling into color cleaning:

  • Be an ally every day. It’ s ok if you want to make something special for people dates, but don’ to forget to show commitment for all those 365 days of the year.      
  • Support education and opportunities for all. Showing solidarity by means of fundraising is also a plus.    
  • Focus on actually giving space to the people minorities. Create opportunities so they can grow inside the company plus improve their careers.    
  • Be coherent between your public image as well as your internal processes.  

The lesson is very simple: it’ s worthless adapting the flag when you don’ t understand the nuances of what you’ re defending. In the event that giving visibility to those minorities is a good idea, the change needs to start from the inside. That is how you can effectively support a motion and go beyond what is “trendy”.

The post What is Range Washing? And Why You Should Prevent It During Pride 30 days appeared first on Stone Content .

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