On May 30, YouTuber Jaclyn Hill launched her beauty brand, Jaclyn Cosmetics, with a range of 20 nude lipstick shades. The collection sold out the same day. But as orders started to come in, customers began to claim their Jaclyn Hill lipsticks had serious defects. Many buyers reported that their lipsticks contained hair, unknown fibers, holes, or plastic beads embedded into the formula. Others claimed their bullets came broken or had a gritty texture after use.
Concerned customers took to Twitter to share photos of their lipstick purchases. In a since deleted tweet, Hill responded to one customer's complaint about strange clumps in their formula by speculating that it might have been from the customer's dry lips. "...you posted swatches 2 days ago loving the lipsticks? Now you're wondering why it's lumpy? Its obvious this lipstick is used & not fresh from factory. Like any other lipstick, if you use it over other products, have dry lips etc, things like this can happen." Hill has since deleted the tweet because "it seemed much more hash that [sic] it sounded in my mind, so I deleted it."
In a later tweet, Hill also said that she had since apologized directly to the customer who raised their concerns. "I reacted very unprofessionally & that’s never my intention. I always want you guys to be comfortable sharing your concerns with me," Hill tweeted.
Hill came out with a public apology about the quality control of her lipstick launch after YouTuber RawBeautyKristi uploaded a video called The Truth About Jaclyn Hill Cosmetics Lipsticks.
"Upon further inspection, I noticed fibers, hairs, beads, and pitting in a bunch of the lipsticks. I decided to put them under a microscope to see what everything looked like up close, and I was shocked," Kristi wrote in the description of the video. "I do NOT think that Jaclyn was aware of the quality of these before them going out, I think that these lipsticks are either OLD OR the lab has ZERO quality control and that they are contaminated (which is what I truly think happened)."
In the video itself, Kristi put her purchased bullets under a microscope and found foreign objects embedded into the formula. "Oh my god. That is absolutely mortifying," she says in the video. "What are these hairs? Is it growing something?"
Since the video posted, Hill responded via Twitter that the unknown fibers were from the white gloves worn by quality control testers in the factory. Hill said that the factory has since switched to rubber gloves.
Jaclyn Cosmetics also tweeted that possible causes for the quality issues were some of the formulas were either not blended thoroughly or exposed to high temperatures.
"In rare circumstances some lipsticks were exposed to high temperatures or the raw materials were not blended thoroughly and that is not acceptable to us — as of now we are seeing less 0.1% with issues," Jaclyn Cosmetics tweeted on June 7.
On June 8, Hill took to Twitter again and shared that she was looking into what was causing the gritty and bumpy texture that some customers are reporting.
Hill also said that her brand would immediately correct any default lipsticks shipped, and send customers new ones free of charge.
"I’m so sorry if the product you received was anything less than perfect. If you are unsatisfied in ANY way please contact firstname.lastname@example.org & we will be sure to give you a full refund as well as send you a new product,” Hill wrote. “I stand behind my brand & will do whatever it takes to make sure my customers are satisfied. I am so grateful for your constant love & support & patience that who have given me!”
That is not to say that every customer has received a tube with alleged defects. There have been happy customers who have shared their positive reviews on social media.
Temptalia, a beauty review site which has over 13 years of experience swatching lipsticks, also came out with an article sharing what was and wasn't normal when it came to lipstick quality. According to Temptalia, sweaty lipsticks and bullets with small holes are very common. Lint and fibers in lipsticks are more common than one would think, but finding more than one long piece or noticeable fuzz is concerning. And grainy, gritty, and melted lipsticks are rare.
In a statement shared with Bustle, a spokesperson from Jaclyn Cosmetics said, “The response to the launch of Jaclyn Cosmetics has been incredible. Of the incredible volume of orders that were placed at launch, we believe less than half of one percent of orders were impacted by compromised product. We are actively reaching out to our customers with questions and concerns and have added to our customer service team to make sure that any questions are swiftly addressed. We are keeping an eye on the Jaclyn Cosmetics social channels and email@example.com, and welcome all feedback. We love our customers and are proud of our successful launch.”