TanaCon 2.0? BeautyCon Slammed By Influencers For Discrimination & Disorganization
One of the world’s biggest beauty conventions took place in Los Angeles over the weekend of August 10th and since then, has been slammed for how the staff and organizers treated various influencers. BeautyCon, which hosts three events across America every year, has come under fire for its lack of organization, food, and drinks, as well as its discrimination against certain members of the beauty community.
One of the worst claims of mistreatment came from YouTuber Sierra Schultzzie who has 874,000 subscribers. Sierra and her friend Skylar Pollitt attended the highly-anticipated event in LA on August 10th and, after she had a terrible experience, uploaded a video titled “We Were Treated Like Absolute Garbage at Beautycon (with live footage)” to YouTube.
In the video, Sierra detailed how she and her friend Skylar, who is pregnant, were treated “like sh*t” at the event and said things would have been different if she looked like “a typical influencer.” She recalled being “looked up and down” while in the photo-booth that she was told was only for “select talent.” The influencers also said there was no food or drink provided at the event, which was an issue as Skylar is heavily pregnant and “didn’t get to sit down once.” They also detailed an occasion when staff and fellow influencers laughed at them.
At the end of the 31-minute-long video, Sierra said, “I think my biggest gripe with BeautyCon and the beauty industry is they act like it’s all about inclusivity because they have people of different body types and gender identities, and they try to be so diverse. But at the end of the day, if you don’t have their look, you will not be treated like a real person.”
In response to the video, BeautyCon’s CEO Moj Mahdara, along with other members of their staff, posted an Instagram live video where they addressed Sierra’s claims. “I know there was an incident online with an influencer, and we’re not gonna say their name. We disagree with the story that’s being told. We disagree with the way that incident is being recounted,” Moj said.
“We take offense to someone calling us out for not being inclusive, for not being diverse. We spend so much time internally talking about inclusivity, diversity, to talk about acceptance of body types, body stigmas, ethnic stigmas.”
After receiving an influx of hate online following the Instagram Live, the official Twitter page for BeautyCon released a statement in which they tagged Sierra and apologized for their initial response video. “Your experience is far from fake news & I apologize for making such a flippant response.”
— Beautycon (@beautycon) August 17, 2019
Twitter users weren’t buying the response, however, and tweeted at the brand criticizing how it handled the situation.
and why isn’t there a direct apology to skylar when YOUR employees laughed at her?? is it because she doesn’t have as much of an online presence as sierra?? you can’t claim to be inclusive and continuously invalidate their experiences w your company… smh
— alaska (@goldenboydjh) August 17, 2019
You are literally saying that Sierra lied with the “It wasn’t what it appeared”.
Also “You could have reached to me on the spot” THEY COULDN’T EVEN TALK WITH THE SECURITY, the CEO wasn’t going to magically appear to solve the problem in the middle of the con, be real.
— Ella~ Khaleesi of the harpies 🐦🔥 (@EllaLatinaMua) August 17, 2019
This is not an apology. Your response was horrible the first time and even now you are condescending and trying to belittle her experience.
— Smokey Glow✨ (@glow_smokey) August 17, 2019
Sierra responded to BeautyCon’s second apology on Twitter by writing: “I do appreciate the apology on the first page of this note. I think your vision is right for inclusivity, but my experience highlights room for improvement. I stand by decision to share my experience online. I chose not to name names or cast blame on specific individuals to prevent personal attacks. But it is my job to use my voice & share my experiences online. We can also work together offline to create change. It doesn’t have to be one or the other. My team will remain in contact with Beautycon, &discussions can happen through that channel.”
I do appreciate the apology on the first page of this note.
I think your vision is right for inclusivity, but my experience highlights room for improvement
I stand by decision to share my experience online. I chose not to name names or cast blame on specific individuals.. https://t.co/iTeGQe4Y3i
— Sierra Schultzzie (@Schultzzie) August 17, 2019
..to prevent personal attacks. But it is my job to use my voice & share my experiences online.
We can also work together offline to create change. It doesn’t have to be one or the other. My team will remain in contact with Beautycon, &discussions can happen through that channel.
— Sierra Schultzzie (@Schultzzie) August 17, 2019
Influencer Patrick Starr also slammed the event, telling fans to “save … money” for better beauty events. He also said it was an “unorganized mess.”
This was the same event where Priyanka Chopra was called out for her “anti-Pakistani” views — so it was a lot. Tanacon 2.0, anyone?