Summer Mckeen, a 20-year-old vlogger and YouTuber with over 2.3 million subscribers, is being forced to address growing backlash over her recent makeup collaboration with Nudestix.
Fans are frustrated over what they believe is a confusing and exclusionary new line of makeup products offered in only one shade — a shade suitable for lighter-skinned customers, or, specifically, Mckeen.
In response, Nudestix told BuzzFeed News that while the company is committed to providing products "available in various shades," they're selling Mckeen's line as one "personal" to her.
"It is really important to note that the Summer Mckeen collaboration is only a selection of Summer’s favorite shades and textures that she loves wearing, personally," a Nudestix spokesperson said. "All of our products are available in various shades, individually, for our customers that span different ages, genders and ethnicities, and that is something we are very proud of."
Mckeen did not immediately respond to BuzzFeed News' requests for comment. And people online seem to be growing more upset with how the YouTuber is handling criticism.
Mckeen announced her creation of a four-piece kit, called "The Summer Proof collection," via a vlog that was re-uploaded on May 17. The kit is being sold for $69 and includes a bronzer stick, blush stick, highlighter, and lip balm.
The original video was posted a week prior, but was removed after Mckeen "had to deal with some issues," she states in newly recorded footage at the top of the vlog.
Those "issues" pertained to a first round of critical comments from viewers that alleged her Nudestix kit was priced too high, and marketed only toward white customers and those with lighter skin tones.
Her video announcement, however, described her one-shade line of makeup as being "multipurpose" and "natural." On the product's Nudestix webpage, a quote attributed to Mckeen describes her collection as one "for all the babes out there."
She also describes each of her makeup items as "really simple to use" and adds that she was deeply and personally involved in the creation process.
"I specifically chose each one of these little products, down to the product and shade for this kit only," she says in the video that has been viewed nearly half a million times. "And there's limited amount of these kits ... so go to the link in my description box and get a Summer Proof kit. You're going to want one."
But her second upload of the vlog did not go over well, either.
"Where the diversity at?" one user asked.
"Seems the products that were specifically chosen will only work for a small portion of viewers," another added.
Some felt Mckeen dismissed the first round of criticism by calling them "some issues" during the intro of the vlog, and failed to account for any of them in the rest of the video.
"'Had to deal with some issues' 🙄 can’t actually say what thy were huh," one person wrote.
The "issue" seemed to be only exacerbated when the YouTuber publicly commented on the controversy surrounding a branded Coachella trip. Mckeen posted an apology for "any involvement [she] may have had" after nonwhite influencers on the trip claimed fashion app Dote, which fronted the trip and provided a group of influencer girls housing, treated them differently than white influencers.
In a lengthy Instagram story screenshotted and saved by YouTube drama channel Spill Sesh, Mckeen announced that she's no longer working with Dote because she "refuse[s] to stand by a brand that causes this sort of discomfort to these strong young women."
She concludes the statement by saying, "We are all human beings who are working every day to learn and improve."
People across multiple social media platforms have said that they do not believe Mckeen has internalized her own words of "learn[ing] and improv[ing]."
"Are u serious rn?? your video is sooo insensitive, especially after the dote situation. And if you want your brand to expand and be bigger you should think about people of color," a user commented on Monday.
They're also accusing the influencer of deleting negative comments on YouTube and her other social media channels.
BuzzFeed News has reached out to Mckeen and her team about these accusations as well.
However, some fans are fighting among themselves about the validity of the ordeal.
"Can you stop deleting negative youtube comments so you can make your life look 'perfect' when really you just can’t own up to the hate you’re getting?" one user wrote on an unrelated Instagram post shared over the weekend.
"Own up to what??? Stop acting like she commit a crime😂😂 promoting makeup," a fan responded.
"Promoting makeup that’s only for light skinned people. it’s 2019 she should know better there’s no excuses," another user wrote back.