Jackie Aina has been the collective voice of reason for the beauty community. In a recent social media post, she turns the attention to these fashion companies profiting off of black culture but silencing themselves when black struggles come about. Influencers are calling out brands and celebrities for not speaking up on police brutality, racism in America, black lives matter, or standing up for change in the black community. The notice came from YouTuber Alissa Ashley bringing up the topic on companies not speaking out. Fans believed and speculated it was about these big brands. Jackie Aina goes into specific detail addressing the companies whom most people knew this topic is about; Fashion Nova, Pretty Little Thing, and Revolve. She says, “As we know, there are a lot of brands who love capitalizing on black culture, black music, black aesthetic but are dead silent when it comes to talking about black issues and black struggles in our community…I know that like, black people dying isn’t aesthetically pleasing for the feed…You can’t just take, pick, and choose the parts of our culture and not embrace all of it.” She tagged these companies in her post and screenshotted that Pretty Little Thing saw her story and said nothing.
Both of these companies are the biggest retail stores that continually use fast fashion to keep up with the latest trends & culture. It has been proven that they’ve stolen lots of designs for small Indie black businesses such as d.bleu.dazzled, Jai Nice Kloset Envy boutique, a crochet artist Luci Wilden, and Kim Kardashian.
Fashion Nova and Pretty Little Thing’s biggest market is young millennials, along with their most popular ambassadors being black men and women who consistently promote their clothing with videos, promotional codes, giveaways, and fashion line collabs. Jackie called them out for not only silencing themselves but posting a vast majority of memes and sale coupons the day the protest began to rise city to city. These companies have been prominent with commenting on versus battles, DJ lives, and Quarantine radio but refused to state until the outrage came under their comments. Fashion Nova continued to post about sales and new designs. There was a post about George Floyd and how they stand with us, but it was deleted. Their next post had solidarity in blackout Tuesday. PLT received backlash for originally posting two hands holding with one hand jet black and the other white captioning the photo “we understand we have a duty of care to talk about topics other than fashion and lifestyle news.” The company has retracted the tweet after and posted a more heartfelt Instagram message with an illustration of victims like Breonna Taylor, George Floyd, and Ahmaud Arbery. Dolls kill was also called out for not speaking up. They’ve finally spoken on blackout Tuesday with a simple post saying “we f——ked up, we should have been quicker + louder.”
A vast majority of companies remain silent on black issues but seem to point their direction of marketing to POC, millennials, and black content creators with a platform. The brands only want to use individuals when its time to showcase the life, laughter, and fun taking the spotlight away from Black issues, black struggles, and never-ending racism on black people.
Like the saying goes “Everybody wants to be black until it’s time to be black.”