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Morphe cuts ties with Jeffree Star after backlash

Morphe announced that it’s cutting ties with Jeffree Star after weeks of backlash following an explosive video by makeup vlogger Tati Westbrook. 

“Today we’ve made the decision to cease all commercial activity related to Jeffree Star and affiliated products,” the cosmetics brand tweeted on Friday. “We expect this to conclude within the coming weeks. As we look to the future, we will continue to share updates on what lies ahead for the Morphe brand.” 

Despite claims by Westbrook, Star is neither an owner nor investor in Morphe. 

The makeup company’s partnership with Star is worth millions; his “Conspiracy” collaboration with fellow YouTuber Shane Dawson sold one million eyeshadow palettes in less than 30 minutes after its launch. Star, who owns his own makeup line, frequently partnered with Morphe for previous collections. The company quietly removed products from the “Conspiracy” collection from its website last month after Dawson posted an apology video for his past content. 

The decision follows a wave of prominent influencers ending partnerships with the brand over its partnership with Jeffree Star, who has a history of racist, problematic content. Jackie Aina, a Black beauty guru with roughly 3.5 million YouTube subscribers and 1.6 million Instagram followers, announced last week that she will “no longer” be a Morphe affiliate. 

“I refuse to align myself with a company that continues to retail antiblack racist beauty brands,” Aina tweeted. “I strongly encourage other influencers to do the same!” 

Tati Westbrook, who was involved in a feud that shook the beauty community last year when she publicly ended her friendship with James Charles, followed Aina’s announcement with a video apologizing to her former protege. Westbrook claimed that YouTubers Shane Dawson and Jeffree Star, who were jealous of Charles’ success, had manipulated her and turned her against Charles. While Westbrook and Charles have since made amends, she said in the video, she condemned Dawson and Star for their actions. 

Both Dawson and Star have a history of problematic and racist behavior. Dawson has posted several videos in blackface, mocked those with disabilities, and mimicked sexually gratifying himself to Willow Smith, who was 11-years-old at the time. Star has said racial slurs on video, and was caught on camera hurling them at Black people. He’s also been accused of making xenophobic and anti-Semitic comments in private. 

Despite a history of racist videos from his early YouTube career, Dawson was widely seen as a beloved YouTube documentarian. Star, on the other hand, was known as YouTube’s villain. He was involved in exposing a group of prominent YouTubers as racist in what became known as “Drammageddon” two years ago. While Laura Lee, a beauty vlogger whose apology video was widely mocked, lost several brand deals, Star made it through unscathed. 

Star remains the CEO of Jeffree Star Cosmetics, which he founded in 2014. It pulls in an estimated $100 million in profit every year. 

Mashable has reached out to Jeffree Star for comment and we’ll update this post if we hear back. 



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