Amazon’s app called out for looking like Hitler’s mustache — so it got changed

By Matt Collins Article may include affiliate links

After a stage design at CPAC was compared to a Nazi symbol, now Amazon has been forced to update its app icon to avoid what some thought looked like a “Hitler” mustache.

Amazon updated its app icon back in January 2021, dropping the rather cluttered look of a white icon, company logo and blue shopping cart and replaced it with an image illustrating one of its most ubiquitous contributions (like it or not) to the world — corrugated cardboard boxes.

The company kept the arrow, which has become a logo element that’s typically printed on its boxes as well as used for multiple divisions and brands within the retailer’s empire, including Prime, Fresh and more.

On the original design, the blue tape had a serrated edge likely meant to invoke the pattern of the cutting blade on many packing tape dispensers.

However, some people called out the company after noting the blue tape looked a bit like Adolf Hitler’s famous “toothbrush” mustache (although he didn’t have blue facial hair).

Instead, the company switched over to a square shape that looks a bit like icons often used for sticky notes or note pads in general but still manages to convey the idea of tape.

Amazon ships in a variety of packaging, including poly bags, brown paper mailers and even no added box at all.

The boxes and some mailers are often sealed with a paper packing tape, typically printed with Amazon promotions, though the company does let other companies pay to have the boxes and tape, if applicable, branded for an advertising campaign.

The Amazon “smile” logo dates back to its 1990s logo that had the company name (often with the “.com” — this was the dot com age, after all) that had an orange arch under it.

However, that element arched upward after starting on the left and curved back down on the right.

In 2000, the company introduced a new logo with the arch flipped upside down with an arrow added on the right side. The arrow extended from under the lowercase “a” in the logotype to the “z” later in the word, a subtle nod to the company’s mission of having “everything from A to Z” (at one time Amazon also let people sell almost any item under the name zShops).

The arrow has also been interpreted as a smile, with the distinct “personality” of the strokes in the pointy part meant to imply the corners of a friendly mouth.