MAC Cosmetics posted a photo to their Instagram account in celebration of New York Fashion Week (NYFW).
The picture depicted an African American woman in profile, close-up on her lips. The message was equally simple:
The model was 19-year-old Maryse Kye. Neither she nor MAC could possibly foresee the negative reaction that the photo would spark.
Hateful, racist commentary began to pop up on the post almost immediately:
Holy shit I thought this was jay z
Them fish lips tho
Kye vented in a post on Instagram which has since been deleted. In it she said:
As I read the comments below this picture Felt so insecure and a bit embarrassed as I just wrapped up fashion week a time period that is tough on models especially black models as we encounter the harsh reality of the fashion world. But I kept reading (not sure why tbh) and saw so much love and support from strangers that made me smile :). If I survived middle school in America, I can get over this.