Lime Crime's website describes it as "iconic pop-culture packaging," but I'm calling bullshit.
The full product description reads as follows: "M$LF (Moms I'd Like to Follow) Limited Edition Velvetines Set makes a perfect Mother's Day gift for a cool mom. Includes 4 full-sized, modern neutrals that compliment every skin tone and will quickly become her favorite! Features our classic bullet-proof Velvetines formula and comes in iconic pop-culture packaging."
Yeah. I know.
According to the brand, the collection was made for "cool moms," who supposedly make up a large portion of Lime Crime's Instagram following.
"Many of our Instagram fans are young moms," read a quote from founder and CEO Doe Deere on the product's page. "I admire these women because they manage to be dedicated mothers and still slay their makeup!"
"This collection celebrates all women and empowers them to be their most confident, bad-ass selves," reads a quote from CEO and founder Doe Deere on the product's page.
One could say that lipstick packaging that glamorizes smoking is questionable enough — but then framing that as somehow being empowering to women is absurd.
Pardon me for sounding like your sub-par middle school health teacher, but smoking has been shown to lead to heart disease, a multitude of cancers (including but not limited to lung, breast, pancreas, bladder, kidney, and cervical), and pulmonary disease. And smoking in front of children drastically increases the likelihood they'll develop these diseases from secondhand smoke, or will begin smoking later in their lives.
What cigarettes won't give you is increased confidence, as the collection states on its packaging.
Not only are actual cigarettes harmful, even fake cigarettes have been shown to have serious influence.
There's a reason candy cigarettes are really only found online now: Multiple studies have shown that children who ate or pretended to smoke candy cigarettes were far more likely to begin smoking the real thing later in life.
It's the same reason Joe Camel doesn't exist anymore. Sneakily marketing tobacco to young audiences influences them. Lime Crime is a brand that appeals to a young demographic — it could be very difficult for a young person to discern the difference between a real cigarette box and its bright-pink, glamorous Lime Crime counterpart.
If using female empowerment as a ploy to sell makeup packaged like cigarettes wasn't bad enough, just wait until you read the shade names.
From left to right: Stacey's Mom, M$LF, Cougar, and Low Cut.
First of all, I'll be waiting here patiently for the Fountains of Wayne lawsuit. Secondly, yeah — many brands give their shades sexual names, but "empowering" young mothers by fetishizing them? Really?
Equating a potentially fatal habit to confidence and beauty is NOT AT ALL necessary to sell a lipstick collection, Lime Crime.
Lung disease is not empowering. Death is not empowering. For a brand that appeals to as many young people as Lime Crime does, glamorizing cigarettes is not OK.
I don't care how many times it has to be said; I'm going to keep saying it. DO BETTER.