White people do a lot of crazy shit when they feel guilty. It can often include posturing, backpedaling, awkwardly offering consolation, etc. Or maybe it’s not even about guilt so much as wanting to feel as though they’re part of the conversation. But one of the most absurd reactions to black injustice of late has to be makeup “influencers” thinking that painting their faces in “Black Lives Matter” and “I Can’t Breathe” regalia is the look of “change.” It is, in fact, the look of the same old fuckin’ story about blancos (or, in this case, blancas) commodifying something black to either seem “with it” or to pull some kind of Allison Williams in Get Out fuckery by grafting the elements of blackness they want to “partake of” without ever having experienced the pain inherent to it.
Alissa Ashley, a beauty influencer of color herself, commented on the unreal trend in “I Can’t Breathe looks” with: “White/Non-Black MUAs, I promise painting ‘I can’t breathe’ on your lips isn’t revolutionary, like I really promise that isn’t what we mean when we say be an ally.” Some have since deleted their TikTok or Instagram photos and videos featuring such content, while others have asked what’s so wrong with showing “support” in this way. Alas, if one can’t see the problem, then it’s clear just how naive we’re still being on thinking that the times they are a-changin’ when, in fact, they might just be mutating into a new way for white people to trivialize the black experience. In this case, with makeup “inspo.”
What’s more, these bitches should be wearing face masks that cover most of their visage anyway so what’s the point in trying to peddle this aesthetic?–other than to further make people falsely believe they can let their guard down about coronaV. And also so one can feel as though they’re “fighting for the cause” through a (camera) lens that suits their overt narcissistic ends.