Saturday, February 4, 2017

What I'm Not Buying: Jeffree Star Androgyny Palette

Jeffrey Star Cosmetics is releasing a new eyeshadow palette, Androgyny.

And I won't be buying. 

I've stayed pretty silent on my thoughts regarding Jeffree Star because they are strong and I don't want to invite drama. 

There are several reasons why I'm not going to buy this palette. I'll go into detail in a moment, but to quickly sum them up:
  • I am skeptical of the quality
  • I already have all these colors
  • I do not support Jeffree Star, his brand, or companies that associate with him

With regard to the first point, yes, I am skeptical of the quality of these eyeshadows. When the Beauty Killer palette released, reviews seemed pretty split. The people who shill everything and clearly have "professional relationships" that they care about for their own popularity said the palette was amazing and completely glossed over/forgave all of Jeffree Star's disgusting behavior. And then there was everybody else who said one or two shades were really good, most were mediocre, and a couple were really, really bad. 

When the Beauty Killer palette launched, it was $45, which I suspect will be the price of Androgyny. If Jeffree Star mentioned the price in his palette reveal video, I apologize that I don't have the correct figure. I couldn't find this price listed online and I will not watch any of his videos. The Beauty Killer palette is now $22.50, and I suspect that price drop is for a few reasons. One, all of his controversies. Two, the colors in the palette don't really work well together. Three, the quality is not very good. If the quality is the same in Androgyny as in Beauty Killer, $45 is far too high of a price tag. And that's not even factoring in shipping since you cannot buy this palette in stores. 

The second point is the easiest for me to make. I already have all these colors. 

As I've mentioned before, I really hate finger swatches. I especially hate when a brand provides their own finger swatches because there are so many variables (like applying primer first) that they don't disclose. All of the swatches in the above photo look very heavy and like they were applied a couple of times. 

To be fair, by no means is Jeffree Star the only person/brand who does this. Almost every brand does. I find it deceptive, but it is something that is pretty consistently done across the board. 

And if I'm going to be totally objective about the colors themselves, I like a lot of them. I especially like the mauve/nude color (second from the left) and the rosy shades. But I quite literally have all of these colors already. And I can guarantee that I have them in better formulas. 

I have Viseart Dark Matte:

Photo: Temptalia

(See what I mean about heavy swatches happening across the board?)

And Coloured Raine Queen of Hearts:

I know I haven't spoken about the Queen of Hearts palette on my blog, and it was one of the few palettes that didn't get a one week, one palette post. And that's really a shame because this palette is absolutely stunning. It might even be my favorite palette. 

My understanding is that the Queen of Hearts palette was limited edition, and I heard that once it sold out, it would no longer be available. It is sold out. Due to its popularity, however, it would be great if Coloured Raine made it a permanent item. And if it was, this would be my recommendation if you wanted some of the shades in Androgyny but didn't think you would use the blue shadows. 

And if the palette does not come back in stock, I recommend checking out some of Coloured Raine's single shadows instead. 

If you really love the entire color scheme in Androgyny, I strongly recommend instead looking at Viseart Dark Matte. Yes, that palette is significantly more expensive, but the quality will be higher. 

And finally, the third point. I do not support Jeffree Star, his brand, or companies that associate with him.

Prior to several months ago, I was not a person who openly shared my views. Even with friends, I towed the line on talking and keeping things to myself. I am originally from the Southwest, have also lived in the Deep South, and have lived in Texas. I currently live in New York City, and for the first time, I live in a place where the majority of people share my viewpoint. But because I have lived elsewhere where the majority of people thought very different from me, I have learned that in order to keep the peace, it is best to keep things to myself. 

But then Brexit and the US election happened, and I can no longer act that way. 

I do not support Jeffree Star because of his racist, sexist, and bullying remarks and actions. There is ample evidence of this online, so I don't feel the need to divulge all of that here. If you are curious, I strongly recommend watching this video by Stephanie Nicole. Additionally, you can search online for hateful comments Jeffree Star has made on twitter and Instagram. In many cases, he calls women "hoe," "piece of shit," "fucking cesspool," and "fucking rat." And threatens violence. 

When Kat Von D disassociated herself from him because he never paid the artist who designed his brand's logo, Jeffree Star responded saying that this was why Kat Von D "could never keep a man."

I've mentioned this before, but I find it truly deplorable for men, especially those who work in the cosmetics industry where the majority of clients are women, to consistently make misogynistic comments. Yes, there are absolutely men who wear and enjoy makeup, but the far majority of cosmetics consumers are women. 

As far as his racist comments and behavior, that is unacceptable, full stop. I don't need to hear that anything is a joke, I don't need to hear that "it's okay because..." I don't need to hear that I'm being too sensitive. No. It's not okay. 

I know that Jeffree Star has issued "apologies" for this behavior, but they did not feel authentic to me. He did not acknowledge blame for his current behavior, acknowledge why it was wrong, and make a sincere apology and promise to do better. He skirted it as something that happened when he was younger, not at all acknowledging how he still attacks women on social media often. I feel strongly that the "apology" was damage control, as was paying off the artist who created his logo AFTER Kat Von D made a video denouncing his behavior and then having the artist sign a non-disclousre agreement. 

And the thing about Jeffree is that he has a really fun personality in his YouTube videos. Before I was educated about his deplorable behavior, I would watch the occasional video on his channel and think he was really funny to watch/listen to. And I think this charisma confuses a lot of people, makes them believe the insincere apologies, and continue to buy his products. 

The CEO of Beautylish recently made an announcement saying that he was proud to partner with Jeffree Star Cosmetics because the products sell well and receive generally positive reviews and that anyone who had a problem with that could email him directly. So, I emailed him directly. I explained that I was disappointed by his response because it essentially said it didn't matter to him what Jeffree Star has said and done and what communities he has hurt and offended because his products make Beautylish money. I provided the CEO will all of the above screenshots as well as the video by Stephanie Nicole that shows Jeffree's racist actions and speech. And the CEO wrote me back saying, "We'll miss having you shop with us."

I also think a lot of people who have careers talking about makeup on YouTube don't speak out against this kind of behavior because they are afraid that it will hurt their financial bottom line. Tati even said that Jeffree had only ever been nice to her personally, so she did not want to consider other people's concerns and just wanted to rave about his lipstick. That is an incredibly privileged viewpoint to think that just because something doesn't affect you personally, that it must not be a problem. And I think because so many of these influencers online don't speak out about his unacceptable behavior, it makes the younger audiences think that it's okay.  

For me, my integrity is worth more than any lipstick or eyeshadow palette. Because of that, I won't purchase the Androgyny palette or any other items from Jeffree Star Cosmetics. 


  1. You said it! I'm very sorry about the dismissive response you got from the Beautylish CEO, this just confirmed my low opinion on that company to start with. As for JS, I figured him out very early in my YouTube watching addiction, therefore, I never supported his brand from the get-go. I think if enough people speak out about JS's behavior, and stop buying his products, this will send a clear message that his behavior is unacceptable. Unfortunately, at this time, most of his following consists of teenagers and young adults, who are unable to see clearly because they are charmed by JS's personality and charisma. The good thing is - people eventually grow up and form their own opinions based on cold facts, and not on superficial shell.
    None of JS's products are on my purchasing radar either.

    1. What's disappointing to me are all the people online who don't speak out against his actions because they are afraid that they will be less popular; that brands won't want to send them on trips, send them free products, and sponsor their videos; and that they will lose money. And that's so awful to me because they could be allies and are instead part of the problem.

      But thank you for reading and commenting.

  2. I'm proud of you. We all have to take a stand. As a little performing dog, I have been told to just be quiet because everyone must like me. Often, my human is quoted as saying,"Everyone has an instrument to do good in the world. Mine just happened to be a little dog." At this point, doing good is speaking out.
    We have a friend who changed her successful blog from fashion and lifestyle to one of politics. She is brave as are you. Speak your mind. #RiseUp #RaiseUp

    1. Thanks very much for your kind words and thank you for reading. This meant a lot to me.

  3. 100% agreed with everything you've written here. In addition to the personality issues I have, it's just plain not an inspired palette. Meh.

    I have to say, though, every time I see that Viseart Dark Mattes in your posts, I think about including it in my spring Sephora sale cart... Even with the size of my collection, I don't have dupes for maybe one or two of them based on Temptalia's list.

    1. Thanks for reading and commenting, Jaime.

      As far as Viseart Dark Matte, I know it's an expensive palette, but it's one that I would recommend, especially if you would use the colors. I don't use mine all the time, but when I do want a specific color, it's always in that palette. It's also a pretty unique color scheme, which makes me feel better about it. It's not a typical neutral palette that most people have five times over. It's also great because if there are one or two unique colors in a new palette, I can usually talk myself out of buying the new palette because I have the one unique shade in Dark Matte.

      Out of all the Viseart palettes I own (and I own six!), Dark Matte is the most special (in my opinion) and the one I think is worth the splurge if you like matte shadows.

  4. Does not surprise me at all how that CEO answered you. I get a real creep vibe from him. Any company who can support a misogynist like that, is creepy IMO.

    I am sorry you were treated that way. So many people on my FB tend to stick up for JS. I don't get it. He does not care at all about anyone except himself. Narcissist at it's finest.

    Thank you for this post, I am going to look for dupes cause I do like the palette but refuse to support that a**hat.

  5. Sorry to add on to my last comment, if you had to choose between Queen of Hearts or Modern Renaissance which one would you get?

    1. Thank you for reading and for your comment. I have an entire post about why I returned Modern Renaissance, so for me personally, the winner is Queen of Hearts. But, I know that so many people absolutely adore Modern Renaissance, so it's worth looking into. The main reason I wasn't crazy about MR was because it was primarily a matte palette with only three shimmers, and the shimmers weren't all that special or anything that really flattered me. MR was therefore more like a companion palette, and I already owned all those colors. If you really love shimmers, Queen of Hearts would be the better choice, in my opinion.

    2. Thank you so much for responding! I wasn't expecting that. I love shimmer so Queen of Hearts it is IF it comes back in stock. I don't have MR for the reason you state (I am not into mattes as much). If Queen of Hearts does not come back in stock, I may have to try to dupe it with Inglot shadows. Thank you again!

  6. I subscribe to JS for awhile but the Kat von D incident was why I unsubscribed from him. I watched his video explaining that and it wasn't very convincing. I also didn't understand why he was promoting marijuana in his channel, it didn't seem to have anything to do with beauty. I do still watch his videos occasionally if they interest me as he does have a funny and charismatic personality, like you mentioned, but I wouldn't buy any of his products. They seem overpriced and overhyped. I really like your blog :)

  7. I knew JS was nasty from the very beginning of his myspace days when he tried to launch a music career. *barf*