Beauty influencers are called just that for a reason: They're... well, incredibly influential. Now more than ever, brands are jumping at the chance to have influencer faces and names — maybe even more than A-list celebrities' — strewn across products.
Influencers know this, and that's why they're known to collaborate with each other, too. More often than not, these collaborations launch without a hitch and become massive successes.
But sometimes, things so wrong — very, very wrong. Take these 12 high-profile cases for example:
Morphe X Jaclyn Hill Palette
Although this palette is now widely beloved in the beauty community, it caused a swirl of controversy way before it was even released.
First, its color scheme was leaked by a bakery that made a dessert version of the palette. At the time, Hill said the cake was wasn't an accurate reproduction of the palette itself, but was later called out for lying (because the cake was spot-on, after all).
The palette was then given multiple release dates, which all fell through without word from Hill or Morphe. After more than a year, fans thought the palette had just been cancelled without word.
If that weren't enough, once the palette was finally launched, a mass of Morphe customers complained their palettes hadn't come in the mail weeks after their orders were processed.
Jeffree Star Cosmetics X MannyMUA collection
The very week this highly anticipated collaboration was due to launch, Jeffree Star Cosmetics and Manny Gutierrez were delivered a trademark infringement lawsuit from Black Moon Cosmetics, which claimed the collab imitated its holographic moon logo.
The suit settled, and the collaboration launched — and sold out — as planned. But when Star and Gutierrez released a second installment of the collection, they were legally required to change its logo.
Kim Thai's Wanderlush Moisturizer for Ofra Cosmetics
In September 2017, YouTuber Kim Thai tweeted that she decided to pull her collaborative moisturizer Wanderlush from Ofra Cosmetics' collection immediately and alluded to a "lack of respect" and "trash talk" from the brand.
She later revealed to a fellow YouTuber that a representative for the brand had accidentally sent Thai mean text messages about her that were actually meant for Thai's longtime friend Nikkie Tutorials. Thai remains friends with Nikkie Tutorials, but has not so much as mentioned Ofra Cosmetics since.
Benefit Cosmetics' Beauty Stowaways Influencer Must-Have Set
Benefit Cosmetics released a collection in August 2017 called the Influencer Must-Have Set, which was fronted by Jeffree Star, Laura Lee, Manny Gutierrez, Nicole Guerriero, and Karen Sarahi Gonzalez.
The set included five miniature versions of bestselling Benefit products, which the internet absolutely roasted for being too expensive and featuring only light-skinned influencers.
James Charles' Covergirl ad campaign
James Charles made history when he became the first male face of Covergirl in late 2016. His face was plastered across the brand's social media accounts for a few months, but soon Covergirl began slowly distancing itself from Charles.
That's likely due to Charles' offensive tweets about Africa in February 2017, in which he suggested the entire continent was infected with the Ebola virus. Covergirl immediately tweeted to clarify that the brand did not agree with Charles' sentiment.
Huda Beauty X Tweezerman
For entire months in 2017, Huda Kattan teased a collaboration with a brand she wouldn't name but was with "one of her faves." Fans jumped to the conclusion that this brand was a big hitter such as Charlotte Tilbury, MAC Cosmetics, or L'Oreal.
So, when Kattan finally revealed that the collaboration was a collection of tools with Tweezerman, her fans were ultimately disappointed.
Jeffree Star's disappearing Morphe brush collection
Jeffree Star and Morphe Brushes announced back in spring 2016 that they'd made a collection of chrome makeup brushes together. Star teased the collection across his social media accounts, but the collection was never given a launch date and disappeared forever.
The internet's beauty sleuths theorize the collection was mysteriously dropped due to footage of Star using racial slurs, which was unearthed the summer immediately after the collection was announced.
MAC Cosmetics' Influencer Collection featuring Laura Lee and Gabriel Zamora
In early 2017, MAC Cosmetics announced its first influencer collaboration with 10 people including Laura Lee, Gabriel Zamora, Fleur De Force, and more. The collection earned little praise from the public, likely because nine out of the 10 lipsticks were nude shades — all of which were only wearable for those with light complexions.
Kylie Cosmetics X KKW
Kylie Cosmetics' highly anticipated collaboration with Kim Kardashian sold out in minutes, but later received a slew of negative reviews because all four shades were so similar, they were difficult to tell apart.
In addition, Kylie Jenner faced mass criticism because there were no nude shades suitable for medium- or dark-complected customers.
Jeffree Star's Androgyny campaign featuring Nikita Dragun
Earlier this year, Jeffree Star dropped his Androgyny eye shadow palette, the ad campaign for which featured fellow YouTuber Nikita Dragun. In a few of Dragun's solo images, her skin appeared very dark due to lighting and editing — so much so that the internet was very quick to accuse Star of blackface.
Star defended himself and Dragun from criticism, and the palette's release continued as planned. Some of the campaign's images featuring Dragun have since been erased from Star's personal and brand social media accounts.
Jaclyn Hill's Favorite Brush Collection for Morphe
Hill released her second curated brush collection with Morphe in May 2016, and it spurred a mass of customer complaints about the brand's poor brush quality. Hill's fans started their very own civil war and took sides in support and against her association with the brand.
In the end, Hill disabled comments about the collection on both YouTube and Instagram. The limited-edition collection sold out through multiple restocks and hasn't resurfaced since that spring.
Too Faced's The Power of Makeup by NikkieTutorials palette
This limited-edition palette from 2016 didn't cause its biggest controversy until almost a year after its release. In one of his biggest feuds to date, Jeffree Star publicly berated Too Faced co-founder Jerrod Blandino for allegedly underpaying Nikkie Tutorials for the Power of Makeup palette.
Rumor has it Nikkie was paid about $50,000 for the collaboration, meanwhile Too Faced made an estimated $84 million from it — that number has never been confirmed and will likely remain unverified until the end of time. Star remains Too Faced public enemy number one; Nikkie never publicly addressed the situation.