"Basically white people's skin tone": Pantone color of the year 2024 sparks backlash over apparent Caucasian theme

Pantone
Pantone's Color of the Year 2024 faces criticism from social media users. (Image via Instagram/@pantone)

Pantone, popularly known for its PMS (Pantone Matching System) announced Peach Fuzz as its color of 2024 last week. However, it led to some controversies and backlash on social media. One TikTok creator @erinraii critiqued the shade, saying that it resembles flesh.

Erin added that color is an integral part of communication in this world and the shade Peach Fuzz specifically reflects one particular skin color, which seems quite off-putting. She said that many designers have also shared a similar thought.

The American color trend-guide company chooses a specific color annually as its Color of the Year. Color experts of the company generally draw the influence for the chosen shade from cultural, socio-political, and media influences. The 2024 shade is a blend of soft pink and orange hues in a pastel tone.

Leatrice Eiseman, the Executive Director of the company described the color as radiant and exuding “warmth and modern elegance.” But many deemed Peach Fuzz an insensitive color choice due to its likeness to Caucasian skin.


Pantone faces criticism for choosing Peach Fuzz as Color of the Year 2024

While analyzing Pantone’s Color of the Year 2024, TikTok creator Erin Raimondi said in her video:

“This is extremely concerning and weird.”

She went on to explain Color of the Year as something that is a projection of what the year would look like in socio-political and cultural aspects. Erin added the color Peach Fuzz will be everywhere in fashion and interior designs as brands will try to sell people their products in this shade.

She shared that the company does reflect on politics as it made two special colors Freedom Blue and Energizing Yellow last year for Ukraine. One comment on Pantone’s Instagram post was highlighted in Erin’s video. The user there asked the company why it didn’t choose the watermelon color symbolizing freedom for Palestine.

Netizens criticize the company for its choice of Peach Fuzz as the Color of the Year 2024. (Image via Instagram/@pantone)
Netizens criticize the company for its choice of Peach Fuzz as the Color of the Year 2024. (Image via Instagram/@pantone)

Many commenters on Erin's video called out how Peach Fuzz resembled flesh Crayola crayons that were prevalent during their childhood. Erin said the color predominantly reflects white skin.

Netizens criticize the company for its choice of Peach Fuzz as the Color of the Year 2024. (Image via TikTok/@erinraii)
Netizens criticize the company for its choice of Peach Fuzz as the Color of the Year 2024. (Image via TikTok/@erinraii)
Netizens criticize the company for its choice of Peach Fuzz as the Color of the Year 2024. (Image via TikTok/@erinraii)
Netizens criticize the company for its choice of Peach Fuzz as the Color of the Year 2024. (Image via TikTok/@erinraii)
Netizens criticize the company for its choice of Peach Fuzz as the Color of the Year 2024. (Image via TikTok/@erinraii)
Netizens criticize the company for its choice of Peach Fuzz as the Color of the Year 2024. (Image via TikTok/@erinraii)
Netizens criticize the company for its choice of Peach Fuzz as the Color of the Year 2024. (Image via TikTok/@erinraii)
Netizens criticize the company for its choice of Peach Fuzz as the Color of the Year 2024. (Image via TikTok/@erinraii)
Netizens criticize the company for its choice of Peach Fuzz as the Color of the Year 2024. (Image via TikTok/@erinraii)
Netizens criticize the company for its choice of Peach Fuzz as the Color of the Year 2024. (Image via TikTok/@erinraii)
Netizens criticize the company for its choice of Peach Fuzz as the Color of the Year 2024. (Image via TikTok/@erinraii)
Netizens criticize the company for its choice of Peach Fuzz as the Color of the Year 2024. (Image via TikTok/@erinraii)
Netizens criticize the company for its choice of Peach Fuzz as the Color of the Year 2024. (Image via TikTok/@erinraii)
Netizens criticize the company for its choice of Peach Fuzz as the Color of the Year 2024. (Image via TikTok/@erinraii)
Netizens criticize the company for its choice of Peach Fuzz as the Color of the Year 2024. (Image via TikTok/@erinraii)
Netizens criticize the company for its choice of Peach Fuzz as the Color of the Year 2024. (Image via TikTok/@erinraii)
Netizens criticize the company for its choice of Peach Fuzz as the Color of the Year 2024. (Image via TikTok/@erinraii)
Netizens criticize the company for its choice of Peach Fuzz as the Color of the Year 2024. (Image via TikTok/@erinraii)
Netizens criticize the company for its choice of Peach Fuzz as the Color of the Year 2024. (Image via TikTok/@erinraii)
Netizens criticize the company for its choice of Peach Fuzz as the Color of the Year 2024. (Image via TikTok/@erinraii)

One user, however, explained that the company chooses the Color of the Year 24 months prior to the final announcement. Thus, implying it was not possible for them to select a shade more politically aligned with the ongoing conflict between Israel and Palestine.

The company supposedly chose its annual shade two years ago. (Image via TikTok/@erinraii)
The company supposedly chose its annual shade two years ago. (Image via TikTok/@erinraii)

A few others also mentioned how Taylor Swift was chosen by Time Magazine as the Person of the Year. They correlated it with Pantone's Color of the Year 2024 and further doubled down on their claim that Peach Fuzz is a questionable shade.

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Edited by Amrita Das
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