Cibu International / Ratner Companies (Hair Cuttery, Bubbles, Salon Cielo): Stop using offensive and racist names for your beauty products
  • Petitioned Cibu International / Ratner Companies (Hair Cuttery, Bubbles, Salon Cielo)

This petition was delivered to:

Cibu International / Ratner Companies (Hair Cuttery, Bubbles, Salon Cielo)
co-founders
Dennis and Ann Ratner
Brand Manager
Jenn Mapp
Vice President of Public & Community Relations
Diane Daly

Cibu International / Ratner Companies (Hair Cuttery, Bubbles, Salon Cielo): Stop using offensive and racist names for your beauty products

    1. Nicole C.
    2. Petition by

      Nicole C.

      Rockville, MD

  1.  
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The names of Cibu International’s line of beauty products – which include “Miso Knotty Detangler,” “Geishalicious Shampoo,” “Take Out Clarifying Shampoo,” “Shang High Mousse,” “Spring Roll Hydrating Cleanser,” “Ancient Veil Oil Mist,” “Hi-Ya! Keratin Reconstructive Conditioner,” “Washabi 3-in-1 Conditioning Shampoo,” and “Dry Kwon Do Dry Shampoo”– are based on the cultural misappropriation and reduction of Asian culture to a handful of puns, food references, and simplistic and Orientalist stereotypes.

Cibu product names run the gamut from reinforcing the stereotyping of Asian people and cultures as “exotic” and foreign, to fetishizing Asian women, to generalizing and mocking Asian cultures by lumping different countries and cultures together. “Miso Knotty” [“me so naughty”] is an especially offensive example of Cibu's misguided product naming. The name plays on racist stereotypes of how Asians speak English, and conjures images of Asian women selling their bodies (as memorably portrayed in the film "Full Metal Jacket") and being sexually objectified and exploited by men, especially white men. The company maintains that the “Miso Knotty” name is mere “wordplay,” but the corresponding “Miso Knotty Miso Nice” gift wrap produced by Cibu shows that the company is well aware of the “me so naughty” connotation, which amounts to racist, sexist mockery of Asian women.

Cibu (cibuinternational.com) is part of the Ratner Companies family, and is sold at Ratner Companies salons – which include Hair Cuttery, Bubbles, Salon Cielo, Salon Plaza, and Colorworks. Altogether, Ratner Companies owns nearly 800 salons in 19 states. If Cibu and Ratner Companies wish to produce and market a line of “Asian”-inspired beauty products, they must find a better way to do so. Regardless of the companies’ intentions, many of its product names are unacceptable as they are now, and should be changed immediately.

We respectfully urge Cibu International and Ratner Companies to cease reinforcing and profiting from racist stereotypes about Asian people and Asian culture by immediately changing their offensive product names.

Recent signatures

    News

    1. Cibu still profiting from its racist, anti-Asian branding

      Nicole C.
      Petition Organizer

      Hello all,

      Months ago I started a petition to call out Cibu International/Hair Cuttery/Bubbles Salons/etc. for their racist, anti-Asian branding. After over 1,000 of you signed, the company agreed to change their product names, so I declared "victory" and the petition was closed to new signatures.

      Over the course of the past few months it's become clear that Cibu doesn't intend to rebrand in a hurry -- and in the meantime, they are still selling and profiting from racist products such as "Miso Knotty" and "Geishalicious." I'd like to reopen this petition so Cibu continues to receive emails about this issue, and have contacted Change.org about this. For those who have already signed, please consider contacting Cibu via their Facebook page to let them know you want them to rebrand sooner rather than later. Profits shouldn't trump principles, especially with such blatantly racist product names.
      https://www.facebook.com/CibuInternational

      Thank you,
      Nicole

    2. Cibu/Ratner Companies rebranding decision in Bitch Magazine online

      Nicole C.
      Petition Organizer

      Bitch Media published a guest blog post about this petition and Ratner Companies' decision to rebrand the Cibu line:
      http://bitchmagazine.org/post/wash-that-racism-out-of-your-hair-after-protest-cibu-brand-promises-to-nix-racist-hair-product-

    3. Cibu has committed to changing its racist names--we're just not sure when.

      Nicole C.
      Petition Organizer

      Diane Daly from Ratner Companies has stated that those in charge of changing Cibu's offensive product names "want to take the time that is necessary to do this the right way," and that they "will let people know when we have definitive information." As such, there are no specifics yet on the timeline for Cibu's rebranding, or what the new names will be.

      I'm planning to leave this petition open to additional signatures until the names have been changed, as I think it's still important for Ratner Companies to hear from people concerned about the current names. But, again, I know that we're all pleased Ratner has taken this important step, and I thank them for doing the right thing.

    4. Cibu has agreed to transition to new product names!

      Nicole C.
      Petition Organizer

      Thank you to everyone who signed this petition, left wonderful comments, and helped us share it far and wide! I'm thrilled to announce that Cibu and Ratner Companies have indeed decided to transition to new product names. Diane Daly at Ratner Companies contacted me this morning, and Cibu has also posted an announcement on their Facebook page:

      https://www.facebook.com/CibuInternational/posts/10151494598537125

      I want to thank Ratner Companies for listening to the concerns of so many people. More related articles and updates will follow on this page. I know that many people will be watching to see how Cibu moves forward on this, and I hope that the voices of Asian Americans in particular will be sought out and heard as the company proceeds with new branding.

      If anyone has any questions or comments, please feel free to email me at nicole.soojung @ gmail.com. Also, please consider taking a moment to let Ratner Companies know that you support this good and necessary decision.

    5. Reached 1,000 signatures
    6. Thank you to all petition signers -- please keep sharing & talking to Cibu!

      Nicole C.
      Petition Organizer

      Thank you to everyone who has signed and shared -- and thanks to Angry Asian Man, Disgrasian, Miss Representation, Lela Lee, Katha Pollitt, and everyone else who's helped spread the word far and wide. Please keep sharing this petition, especially on Facebook and Twitter, so that others can help us let Cibu and Ratner Companies know that this kind of unapologetic, thoughtless racism in marketing is unacceptable.

      Cibu and Ratner Companies get an email when anyone signs the petition, but you should also consider contacting the companies by posting on their Facebook pages:
      https://www.facebook.com/CibuInternational
      https://www.facebook.com/haircuttery
      https://www.facebook.com/bubblessalons

      Cibu has been deleting critical posts, but every contact lets them know that people are aware of their racist branding, informing friends and family about it, and hoping they do the right thing.

      Thanks again, everyone!

    7. Reached 250 signatures

    Supporters

    @RepresentPledge

    Jan 28, 2013

    .RT @changeWomen: Activists urge @Cibu17 to drop racist Asian stereotypes from product names. Join? http://t.co/u4lp6RdF #NotBuyingIt

    Miss Representation
    29k followers

    @KathaPollitt

    Jan 28, 2013

    Cibu International / Ratner Companies (Hair Cuttery, Bubbles, Salon Cielo): Stop using racist names for beauty products http://t.co/mvlV6qbH

    Katha Pollitt
    7.34k followers

    Reasons for signing

      • 8 months ago

      Denigration or objectification of people for their ethnicity, skin color, language or cultural heritage is offensive to me.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Melanie Kirsh BOSTON, MA
      • 10 months ago

      This is disgusting

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Angela Kane NORTH LAS VEGAS, NV
      • about 1 year ago

      People using racially insensitive advertising for profit is wrong in every way.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Diane Knox NEW YORK, SINGAPORE
      • about 1 year ago

      people are just figuring out how terribly offensive this is - just the same as using jokes about blackface to sell toothpaste (yeah, a company used to do that). It may feel 'different' but it's not. it's time we all get our heads around it. Doing it to asians is just as hurtful and poisonous to us all as using blackface, or stereotypes about jews, etc etc. time to take a fresh approach!

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Cat Clark ALEXANDRIA, VA
      • about 1 year ago

      Even after apologizing and promising to rebrand, Cibu is joking on Facebook about naming a product "Enter the Drygon," among other offensive options.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:

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