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June 14, 2013 11:00 am

Clothing Company American Apparel Names Nail Polish Color ‘Hassid’

avatar by Zach Pontz

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American Apparel's "Hassid" nail polish. Photo: American Apparel.

American Apparel is causing controversy again, after naming one of the colors of a nail polish line “Hassid.” The “nail lacquer,” as the bottle officially says, is black, but keeping with owner and founder Dov Charney’s incendiary vision, it was designated the religious moniker to honor (or mock) the ultra-orthodox community’s taste for all-black clothing.

Charney, who is Jewish, is no stranger to exploiting Chasidic culture to sell clothing. In 2009 Woody Allen successfully sued his company for five million dollars, over an American Apparel billboard featuring Allen’s Annie Hall character in the famous Chasidic garb dream sequence.

Of course, Charney’s choice can also be approached from a different angle: “Hassid” translates to “piety” or “loving-kindness.” So perhaps he just wanted to brighten the image of a gloomy color.

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