Valspar is changing its pink paint colour names for this controversial reason

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  • Valspar paint is ditching its outdated pink colour names to celebrate International Women’s Day.

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    In an effort to help combat the outdated stereotype that pink is for girls, Valspar is ditching its original gendered shade names. Names such as Dollface, Sweet Angel, Girly Girl and Ladylike are just a few of the pink hue names being swept back to the 50s where they belong.

    Valspar has announced that it will be replacing the dated names with empowering, gender-neutral terms. ‘Dollface’ a marshmallow pink shade, is to be replaced by ‘Woke Up Like This’ in the pink make-over.

    Valspar paint

    Image credit: Valspar

    ‘Sweet Angel,’ a slightly darker pastel pink, has been swapped for ‘Fearless’. A bright pink paint colour currently called ‘Girly Girl’ has been renamed ‘Anything You Can Do’.

    However, our favourite is the name swap for ‘Ladylike’. The light pink shade has been rechristened ‘Like a Boss’.

    You might be thinking this is all barmy, political correctness gone crazy. However, the language that we use around colours such as pink is more important than you think.

    ‘Traditional ideas such as ‘pink is for girls’ often contain stereotypes about gender that restrict aspirations and opportunities,’ explains Jane Sunderland, honorary reader in Gender and Discourse at Lancaster University. ‘These stereotypes are out of place in the 21st century where gender equality is expected.’

    Valspar paint 2

    Image credit: Valspar

    ‘The language we use matters,’ she adds. ‘It not only reflects the world around us, but it also helps us construct it. How things are named or re-named has an important role to play in building a healthier and fairer society.’

    To feel just a sliver of the power that words can have, think about whether would you rather paint your walls with a shade called ‘Fearless’ or ‘Sweet Angel’? I know which we would rather.

    ‘We might have given pink a bad name up until now, but we want to change that,’ says Jane Ryder, European marketing director at Valspar. ‘With International Women’s Day approaching, we’re asking the nation to get involved and help us bring our names up-to-date so they can proudly choose them for their homes.’

    Related: This shade of grey is the most popular paint colour for homes – have you used it?

    The new names will appear on the Valspar website in April 2020 and in-store later this year.

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