It seems despite the Black Lives Matter movement, the constant hashtags and the social media outrage, beauty brands can’t stop promoting colorism in the most insensitive ways. Thankfully, there’s some outrage, at least on social media.
A Hong Kong-based make-up brand is facing backlash for naming one of their recently released products after the Holocaust victim and 15-year-old Anne Frank, who became a worldwide name after her posthumously published book, The Diary of a Young Girl.
Although Anne never had anything to do with a beauty product, the brand named Woke Up Like This (WULT) launched its new liquid blush on its first anniversary, calling it — ‘Dream Like Anne’.
After the product came under the ire of criticism, it was taken down from the brand’s website. Other products of similar kinds also followed and they included — ‘Viva La Frida’ drawing inspiration from Frida Kahlo, ‘Like Like Melinda’ for philanthropist Melinda Gates, and ‘In Woolf’s Words’ for writer Virginia Woolf.
The products are part of the brand’s new collection, Fab Dab.
An article by Times Out has also been lambasted for singing good songs about this recently released product. In one of its articles, it said that the new collection “aims to promote Sexual Health Awareness Month by naming the products after inspiring, famous women in hopes to inspire WULT customers to live their dreams and break through gender barriers."
The incident has drawn strong criticism on social media, with Jewish author Ben M. Freeman being one of the firsts to slam the otherwise racist product, that comes of more as a disregard and insensitive towards the suffering of a Jew family than honoring them.
Taking to Twitter and hitting out at the Times Out article, he said, “Naming a shade of blush after Anne Frank, who was a victim of genocide is revolting. Dead Jews are not a marketing opportunity. @timeouthk, shame on you for not noticing and for promoting this disrespect."
Naming a shade of blush after Anne Frank, who was a victim of genocide is revolting.Dead Jews are not a marketing opportunity. @timeouthk, shame on you for not noticing and for promoting this disrespect. pic.twitter.com/bbPcjiLcc1
— Ben M. Freeman (@BenMFreeman) September 16, 2020
Following Freeman’s tweet, other netizens came together to express their shock at the brand’s insensitivity and said, “In a world where corporate endorsement of Black Lives Matter is uncontroversial, Anne Frank make up is inevitable."
WTAF!? I am just STAGGERED that at no point in the creative process did anyone on the Woke Up Like This team, or ANY of the other hundreds of people involved say “ummm guys, this might not be appropriate"— Claire Coleman ✍🏽 (@featuresjourno) September 16, 2020
What. The. Hell.— ((( Little Big Mouth ))) (@1littleBIGMOUTH) September 16, 2020
All I can think is that no one in the marketing department thought it was acceptable to say that someone’s new creative idea was a terrible idea. Or maybe they’re all just completely clueless.— Occasional Optimist (@Batyalee) September 16, 2020
The color is “dream like Anne” - what color are nightmares? Or were they going for red for blood and gore? Really warped.— ericavee (@ericavee1) September 16, 2020
— Ron Coleman (@RonColeman) September 16, 2020
[cringe]— ((( 💔🐱💔🐾💔 ))) (@NotATweetster) September 16, 2020
However, later WULT issued an apology stating, “To those who were offended by the naming of Face Dab — Dream Like Anne, we sincerely apologize for the miscommunication and misunderstanding this has caused." It further added, “We have the greatest respect for Ms Anne Frank, and it was never our intention to be insulting, offensive, or to reap profits from naming the product after a historical figure whose life was tragically cut short by events that bring out the worst of mankind.”