Have you ever heard the phrase "It's not that serious?"
Did they tell you to just "get over it?"
Did they make you feel like it was your own personal problem, rather than a reflection of our society?
You probably just experienced a microagression. It might be difficult to describe the experience of a microagression, but when you feel one, you know.
Many people will often dismiss the experience as insignificant or trivial but when the same thing happens over and over and over...and over and over again.. it transforms from a seemingly one-off occurrence into a pattern.
We see microagressions happen all the time in the beauty industry and they need to cease and desist ASAP. Here's a list of the most glaring and egregious.
(Even though some of the brands on this list have been "cancelled," this is not a piece intended to throw shade on any one brand but rather expose problematic beauty industry standards and create a conversation around them.)
1. Naming beige foundation shades "Natural"
Like, does this mean all the other shades aren't naturally occurring or......? 🤔🤔🤔 IDGI
2. Creating nude lip collections/shades that only suit lighter complexions
(What's a pure nude? Pure nude for who?)
We all know that lighter nude lip shades can easily be used on darker skintones with the help of a lip liner, but it would be nice if the product development teams out there consider making some no liner nudes for those of us who want something that looks great out of the tube. Bare Minerals did a great job of this with their Gen Nude Collection.
3. Releasing darker foundation shades "later"
You would think by now this goes without saying, but alas here we are. It's crazy to hear the excuses brands come up with to justify this behavior.
"We want to see if the product sells first."
"Darker people don't wear foundation."
And the latest,
"We are all paler in the winter months and darker in the summer months."
Oh of course, I forgot..I'm no longer black in the winter! 🙃🙃🙃
Hey beauty brands, people with darker skintones don't want to continuously be your afterthought. If you want to sell to us, try talking to us the first go round. (and get them undertones right!)
4. Swatching products on darker skintones that don't suit them
It's truly baffling how these photos go through from conception to print without any issues from the brand's internal teams. In what world does it make sense to use dark arms to advertise light complexion products to people with light skin.....I Just.....
The arms are there at a lame attempt at being diverse. It's almost as if they are saying, "Lets just throw them in there so they will shut up already."
5. Inauthentic "diversity" initiatives
You would again, thinks this goes without saying BUT, if you are going to create a "diverse" beauty campaign or creative messaging around diversity, make sure you have the products to back it up! Practice what you preach!!
How is it that It Cosmetics founder Jamie Kern Lima is praised for "challenging the beauty industry" by showcasing different beauty standards and yet It Cosmetics' complexion products are ALWAYS 50 shades of beige. HOW?
Another example is Wet n Wild's "Breaking Beauty" campaign, in which they cast the first model with albinism to ever appear in a major beauty campaign (amazing btw, can't believe she's the first!) BUT, in the same breath they launched a new foundation to go along with this campaign that only goes as dark as Cafe Au Lait.
It just doesn't make sense.
This occurences are tired, tragic, and have got to end. What do think about these microagressions? Are there some missing from the list? Let us know in the comments!