• It's 2016, cultural appropriation isn't a cute look, and we need to stop this. (Mac Cosmetics)Source: Mac Cosmetics
Despite being accused of cultural appropriation multiple times in the past, MAC denies that its new "music festival inspired" collection has any connection to Native American cultures.
Stephanie Marie Anderson

25 Apr 2016 - 12:54 PM  UPDATED 25 Apr 2016 - 12:51 PM

MAC Cosmetics is currently facing backlash for their Summer 2016 collection, entitled "Vibe Tribe". Supposedly inspired by "music festivals", MAC denied that they were appropriating Native American culture with their use of tribal patterns, telling Refinery29: "The collection, including the visuals, product lineup, and naming, is inspired by art, outdoor music festivals, and the colors of the desert."

Ignoring the fact that music festivals have a long history of appropriating Native American cultures, the statement concludes: "The collection has absolutely no connection to nor was it inspired by the Native American cultures."


Still, people are not happy. Reddit duo beanieandpeach wrote that they were "really grossed out" by the idea of MAC profiting from "Native designs and 'vibes'" saying: "I don't imagine any of the proceeds will be going to any of the First Nations, and I'd be surprised if there were any Native models in their ad campaigns."

"My personal history is tribal," they continued, "and it's not just a cute design for me, it's my fucking culture."

"My culture is dying, my people are dying, and it's because of a history of mass genocide and forced sterilization and plagues and poverty and broken treaties — and it actually hurts to imagine that someday, the word 'tribe' might live on the faceplate of some MAC cosmetic, long after the last native speaker of the Nimiípuu is gone."

And the reactions on social media have been equally critical.


Some have questioned whether the collection is actually based on music festivals.


Others have demanded a follow-up statement.


Some have been disappointed that with so many people talking about cultural appropriation, brands are still giving the okay to ideas like MAC's Vibe Tribe collection.


Others just can't believe it.

And some have encouraged MAC fans to boycott this collection.

This is not the first time MAC has been accused of cultural appropriation, as Twitter user Kawliga pointed out.

In fact, in 2010 MAC was forced to release an apology for their Rodarte collection, in which they named a frosty pink nail polish "Juarez," named after a town notorious for the number of women aged 12-22 who had been raped and murdered with little or no response from police, featuring a model wearing white makeup that made her look dead.

Basically? It's 2016, cultural appropriation isn't a cute look, and we need to stop this.