- The YouTube beauty star James Charles had a falling out over the weekend with his former mentor, Tati Westbrook, who posted a video accusing Charles of dishonest and predatory behaviour.
- Charles’ YouTube account hemorrhaged millions of followers over the weekend, and plenty of people posted videos of themselves demolishing or redecorating Charles’ signature Morphe Cosmetics eye-shadow palette.
- But the product is still available to purchase on the website for Ulta Beauty, which seemingly has not cut ties with Charles.
- Ulta did not immediately respond to Business Insider’s request for comment.
The controversial YouTube star James Charles seemingly hasn’t gotten the brush-off from the major makeup retailers behind his signature eye-shadow palette.
The same can’t be said for the millions of people who unfollowed Charles over the weekend after Tati Westbrook, a fellow makeup artist and former mentor, posted a video accusing the 19-year-old of dishonest and predatory behaviour.
Charles’ YouTube account boasted about 13.5 million followers as of Tuesday, down from an audience of about 16 million. Celebrities like Kim Kardashian West, Demi Lovato, and Jeffree Star were included in the online exodus.
Charles and Westbrook had collaborated numerous times and are both well-known influencers in the YouTube beauty community. But on Friday, Westbrook posted a video titled “BYE SISTER” in which she accused Charles of changing for the worse because of “fame, power, and a fat bank account” and alleged that Charles attempted to “trick a straight man into thinking he’s gay” on multiple occasions.
Later that day, Charles posted a video apologizing to Westbrook and her husband. Representatives for Charles didn’t immediately respond to Business Insider’s request for comment.
People have posted memes about the situation and taken out their displeasure on Charles’ signature Morphe Cosmetics eye shadow palette. Some posted videos of themselves destroying or throwing out the palettes, while others painted over Charles’ image on the product’s packaging.
Morphe Cosmetics didn’t immediately respond to Business Insider’s request for comment.
At first blush, this all looks disastrous for Charles’ career. But the YouTuber’s fate when it comes to major makeup retailers is blurry.
Morphe Cosmetics has not dropped Charles from its site. And Ulta Beauty is still selling the Morphe x James Charles palette for $US39. Ulta Beauty didn’t immediately respond to Business Insider’s request for comment.
Pam Danziger, a luxury-market expert, wrote in Forbes in March that Ulta Beauty’s decision to feature popular influencers like Charles, Kylie Jenner, and Jaclyn Hill helped make the company far more accessible than its main competitor, Sephora.
But if this weekend’s controversy is any indication, the decision also leaves Ulta exposed to eruptions of influencer drama.
— Eddie B (@eddieberto2) May 13, 2019
People coming into ulta beauty to return their James Charles palettes pic.twitter.com/lWQDSZPx6S
— spooky soph???? (@sweetnerzoe) May 12, 2019
Who else out here hoping @ultabeauty majorly discounts all of their james charles pallets? Lol girl I'm not too proud to not buy one at a looooow price. And girl the price better be as low as his standards..#JusticeForTati #Tati
— IAmTheRageQuit (@Lady_Rage_Quit) May 14, 2019
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