In 2016, ‘all about that glow’ is exactly what Joelle Phillips was thinking when she DIY-ed a shimmer setting spray with the help of MAC products and posted it to her Instagram. After her invention went viral, she was warned to take down the photo in fear of larger companies stealing her idea (two years too early, but a warning to be heeded, indeed).
In 2017, just one week after posting another viral post–this time a video of her creating the mist — Phillips came out with her own line of shimmer setting sprays, aptly titled Omglo. This time around, instead of mixing MAC pigment in with MAC Fix+Finishing spray, she told Revelist she now sources all her own materials while still mixing them in her house.
Fast forward to last month, and TrendMood1 posts about MAC Cosmetics latest product: shimmer Fix+ shades in Matte, Gold Lite and Pink Lite. Before you rebuttal saying shimmer sprays can’t be owned by one woman (Phillips, that is), Revelist pointed out that MAC collaborated on the sprays with makeup artist, Jun Jun.
The collaboration by itself wouldn’t be a big deal, except that MAC is denying credit where credit is due. The brand could have easily partnered with Phillips, another budding MUA, rather than than Jun Jun, who already has over 300K followers. While we appreciate MAC working with an artist of color, Phillips is right when she says black women are usually an “afterthought.”
When Revelist asked Phillips if she was upset by MAC stealing her idea, she responded perfectly. “It would have been nice to have been reached out to by MAC. I would have gladly taken up the opportunity because I really feel like black women, especially in the beauty community, are always the last to be heard.”
But Phillips isn’t letting MAC get her hopes down because she has something they don’t and that’s shade range. The setting sprays put forth by MAC barely scratch the surface, while Phillips formulated her’s specifically for black women.
She said, “Now, my products are for everyone, but I have shades specifically for women of color. I created them for us. The shades I’ve seen aren’t going to fit anybody past J.Lo. I would never be offended by that.”
She also has an incredible group of people standing behind her. There were tons of comments on TrendMood1’s post calling out MAC for “playing catch up” and copying a woman of color. People even tagged Omglo and told people to make their way over there for “more shades” that are “vegan and affordable.”
It’s no surprise a black woman came up with something first, then a conglomerate came along and claimed it as their own. But if the big brands aren’t going to pay attention to all women— or cosmetic wearers in general— it’s a good thing black women are taking matters into their own hands and making the beauty lines themselves.