Kylie Jenner finally gave credit to Vlada Haggerty, the makeup artist who created the concept of “melting lips” long before the Kylie Lip Kits made their debut. Last year, the 19-year-old business mogul was accused of ripping off Vlada’s artworks.
Lips dripping with pigments are now associated with Kylie’s successful cosmetic brand and on Friday, she shared a four-way photo of melting lips and mentioned the makeup artist who conceived the concept.
It was in December 2015 when Kylie first shared the photo on her brand’s Instagram account. The picture then vanished from the account after it came to Vlada’s attention that her photo was “reproduced.” Kylie’s company did not address the accusations. A few months later, Vlada then threatened to sue the Keeping Up With the Kardashians star after she shared another image with an uncanny resemblance with Vlada’s work.
Really @kyliecosmetics? Haven't you gotten enough 'inspiration' from me already? Left is a the work @juliakuzmenko, @brittrafuson and I shot a few months ago and right is @kyliecosmetics new campaign.
A photo posted by Vlada Haggerty (@vladamua) on
The photo shows an open mouth with heavily pigmented lips. The model’s hands are embellished with a shiny gold powder. The California-based artist took to Instagram to air her annoyance.
While several news outlets picked up the story and started crediting Vlada for her work, Kylie’s team again remained mum and simply deleted the photo. Vlada told Refinery29 that the brand never tried to communicate with her.
“Nobody reached out to me before or after the incident. I did message the brand through Instagram on the day of the repost, but there was no response. Crediting artists is essential, but this goes beyond that. It’s theft; this is our livelihood…I see these things happen too many times to artists. We are all trying to make it, and this business is extremely competitive. I would ask anyone at this level use the proper channels to obtain images.”
It appears that Kylie’s team finally learned its lesson after the recent upload which gave a shout-out to Vlada.
A photo posted by Kylie Cosmetics (@kyliecosmetics) on
This isn’t the first time that the raved-about cosmetics faced controversy. In July, a New Zealand-based beauty vlogger expressed disappointment that Kylie’s new eyeshadow palette shared similarities with her BH Cosmetics.
— Shaaanxo (@xoShaaan) July 25, 2016
Another accusation is that the formulation of the lip kits is similar with ColourPop, another famous brand of lip products but with more affordable price tags. In a YouTube video, beauty blogger Stephanie Nicole claimed that Kylie’s Candy K shade has an identical formulation with ColourPop’s Clueless.
“All she is doing is basically lending her name out to a brand that knows that no matter what it is, people will wait in line. So when they saw the huge response, they cut some corners, and took a good formula and made it cheap.”
Stephanie noted that the reformed Candy K shade, although brighter, is “significantly more watery” than the previous formulation that’s creamier. Despite her speculations, she still praised the Kylie Lip Kits for fulfilling its promise to stay on the wearer’s lips all day. However, Stephanie would rather buy ColourPop because they could be bought for at least $6 as opposed to the Kylie Lip Kits priced from $15 to $29.
Apart from Stephanie, cosmetic bloggers NikkieTutorials and Grace Ha likewise claimed that the Kylie Lip Kits were “repackaged” ColourPops. The two later erased their posts, making some wonder that they have been contacted by Kylie’s team.
Although it is fairly common in the industry for beauty brands to just rely on a single manufacturer, some think that Kylie’s team is not being fair for charging that much for its “repackaged” lip kits.
Fans, however, do not seem to mind falling in line for Kylie’s creations. The lip kits even raised half a million dollars for Smile Train, a charity that provides free surgeries to children with cleft lip or cleft palate in developing countries.
A photo posted by Smile Train (@smiletrain) on
Kylie’s brand created a special edition shade called Smile which quickly sold out. The first sale took place in October which raised over $159,000. Now that the second run has finished, People reports that the total collections reached $500,000.
[Featured Image by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images]