The initial excitement surrounding the launch of three new Fenty Beauty highlighter shades turned to outrage as some consumers reacted negatively to one of the product names.
Two of the three shades - 'Afternoon Snack/Mo' Hunny' and 'Penny 4 u Thots' were welcomed by fans but the reaction to the third, 'Geisha Chic', wasn't quite so positive. The brand’s social media accounts were flooded with comments requesting that the name be changed.
Referring to Rihanna and Coldplay's 2012 Princess of China video which was criticised for portraying Asian stereotypes, one user commented: "Yeah speaking on behalf of East Asians: nice colour, but the name? Really? This is a brand that wants to be inclusive, and yet... lol I put faith that RiRi learned from her 'princess of China' days but I guess not".
Fenty Beauty has been quick to react to the backlash and has pulled the product until further notice. Instagram account @trendmood1 posted the following comment: “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.”
Unofficial beauty industry watchdogs @esteelaundry posted Fenty Beauty’s response on Instastories: “We hear you, we have pulled the product until it can be renamed. We wanted to personally apologize. Thank you so much for educating us.”
The recall will no doubt impact the Fenty Beauty’s bottom line but the goodwill garnered from its apology and subsequent action is likely to be significant.