Makeup artist and YouTube mega-celeb Jeffree Star is no stranger to controversy — in fact, the Jeffree Star Cosmetics collection even features a color palette called Mini Controversy, as well as a palette called Conspiracy, and several with decidedly non-pacific names: Jawbreaker, Beauty Killer, and Blood Lust. It should have come as no surprise, then, when he chose to release a color palette featuring mostly neutral tones and christen it Cremated.
Star’s been teasing the Cremated collection on Instagram for the past few days in advance of its May 22 product launch. In one post he describes his new eyeshadow palette as a “24 pan gothic dream [that] will wake up the makeup world!” with its “iconic mattes & new extreme sparkle metallic formula.” While many of his Instagram followers seem really psyched for the opportunity to paint their faces in ashy tones, others seem to find playing dead in the midst of a worldwide pandemic to be in somewhat questionable taste.
Not everyone is enthused about Cremated
While Cosmopolitan notes that many Jeffree Star fans are super-excited for the new palette, with one calling it a “goth dream” and another gushing “I wanna remove of of the pans and live inside this palette instead urgh wow,” others commenting on this product were disenchanted with the name of the collection and its colors such as Casket Ready, Eulogy, Grave Digger, and The Morgue. One typical response was, “Wow. The level of tone deaf and insensitivity is beyond. We’re in the middle of a global pandemic with hundreds of thousands of people dying and you’re going to release a palette called “Cremated”?” Another one got really, really personal: “…I am in shock and disbelief really. Always loved your palettes, got many of them. I was super excited for the reveal and now I am feeling deflated over it. My grandad was cremated last week due to the current global situation and I just don’t think it’s appropriate.”
Still others, Page Six notes, weren’t too thrilled with the actual colors in the palette, noting that there’s actually not that much variety amongst the 24 different shades. One Twitter user even took a double swipe, complaining, “so ur gonna tell me Jeffree star is releasing a palette called ‘cremated’ during a global pandemic where thousands are dying pls who are his PR team ALSO these shades are so nasty…tell me they aren’t all dupes of themselves….”
Jeffree Star addresses the Cremated controversy
After he saw which way the ashes were blowing, Jeffree Star released a YouTube video responding to the backlash over the Cremated palette. He revealed that he’d had recent tragedies of his own, including losing his father and two of his dogs over the past year, all of whom had actually been cremated. He didn’t intend the name to be triggering for anyone, but instead said, “I created this to make people smile. I created a brand for all the weirdos and people that really didn’t feel like they fit in. In no way was this created to be offensive, ever.”
Most of the comments on Star’s video seemed supportive, asking, “Do people really gotta be offended over every little thing?” and stating the obvious (for anyone familiar with Star’s penchant for goth-y makeup themes): “It’s not like the pandemic hit and he said ‘let me mock this global tragedy and make a palette called cremated!!!'” Also, as Star explained, he tried to delay the collection’s release as long as he could (it was originally scheduled for April), but makeup does go bad if left on the shelf too long. At any rate, controversial or not, it looks as if there will still be a market for the Cremated collection — in fact, Page Six reveals that some Star fans are even hoping that there will be a boycott just so they’ll be able to score this in-demand product before it’s all sold out.
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