RIHANNA: Fenty Fail Gets Fixed Fast

Written by on April 4, 2019

Rihanna’s Fenty Beauty brand came this close to launching a problematic product into the line.

As soon as fans saw the marketing around the new facial highlighter, they called out the name “Geisha Chic [pr: sheek]” as offensive. The original post promoting the new Killawatt Freestyle Highlighter has since been taken down.

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UPDATE ?? Hey Loves, Due to the feedback on this post @fentybeauty has decided to completely remove this shade from online and in stores until further notice. We will keep u updated! We appreciate Fenty Beauty’s responsiveness to this matter and applaud the continuous evolution of this amazing beauty community ??? . . . More….. ???❤️ #fentybeauty Keep it cute and sweet in #KILLAWATTFOIL in #GEISHACHIC! NEW metallic brick red ✨ . . It’s going to be a HOT? #Summer2019 ☀️✨ Also dropping: 1. #BRONZERS ✨? #SUNSTALKRBRONZER – gives instant warmth that brings out the right undertones for a sun-soaked glow! This creamy, powder bronzer. that are blendable and transfer resistant in 8 shades, Instant Warmth Bronzer $30 each: MOCHA MAMI – very del shade with warm red undertones COCO NAUGHTY – deep shade with neutral undertones CARAMEL CUTIE – tan to deep shade neutral undertones BAJAN GYAL – tan shade with warm undertones I$LAND TING – Medium shade with neutral undertones PRIVATE ISLAND – Light to medium shade with warm undertones SHADY BIZ – Light shade with warm undertones INDA SUN – fair shade with neutral undertones 2. SCULPTING BRONZER BRUSH 195 $34 – A tapered bronzer brush with a custom paw shape designed to contour the face with effortless precision. 3. CHEEK-HUGGING BRONZER BRUSH 190 $36 – An extra large, super plush bronzer brush that’s expertly chiseled to “hug” the curves of your face for an all-over bronze glow. 4. LIL BRONZE DUO Mini Bronzer Set $24 featuring a mini Sun Stalk’r Instant Warmth Bronzer and a mini Match Stix Shimmer Skinstick. In SHADY BIZ/SINAMON (for light – Medium skin tones) CARAMEL CUTIE/SINAMON (For tan to deep skin tones) 5. Mini!! PRO FILT'R – Instant Retouch Setting Powder $16 in Butter, Cashew, Honey, Nutmeg . . Will be available ➡️ APRIL 5TH online @fentybeauty @sephora . . There are more…. ? What’s on your list? ?❤️?✨? XO #Trendmood #fenty #fentybeauty THANK U for this beautiful update: @jordy2_shorty @audreypschl ? . . #motd #makeupoftheday #mua #ilovemakeup #makeup #makeupaddict #makeuplover #makeupblogger

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Social media users explained the issue, tweeting, “Rihanna…explain why Asian-targeted racism gets glossed over, it feels even worse when it’s from another marginalized group.” Another comment echoed that sentiment, adding, “Rihanna was really about to bring out a blush called Geisha Chic. Thank God people noticed how gross that was and Fenty delayed the launch to rename it. Really weird how the entire Fenty beauty team didn’t catch how inappropriate that name is from the start.” 

After internalizing the feedback, Fenty responded with an Instagram post thanking followers for “educating” and said it wouldn’t release the product until it’s been renamed. 

Fenty’s move was well-received by the critics. One Fenty fan wrote, “This is a good apology. It doesn’t side step or make excuses. I’m super happy. It’s also a good sign that Fenty is willing to eat the cost of pulling an almost-launched product… Even if it’s just renamed, that will require a lot of money to relabel. I appreciate that Fenty didn’t just go forward with the launch while saying that they’d do better next time.”

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