Bloggers Demand MAC & Rodarte Donate Profit from Juarez Makeup

By Julianne Hing Jul 19, 2010

Update 8:54pm ET: MAC has announced that it will be changing the names of some of the products in their Juarez-inspired collaboration with Rodarte. No details on which product names will be changed–but we’ll venture a guess and say that the "Juarez" and "Factory" shades of nail polish will be the first to go. Temptalia has a full product list of the cosmetics line, set to hit stores September 2010. via


MAC and Rodarte, the cosmetics and high-fashion companies who collaborated on a poorly planned Juarez-inspired line of makeup, issued apologies for their missteps last Friday. But the blogosphere–including a long line of makeup and fashion bloggers–is still angry.

And now bloggers, who’ve learned their power to hold MAC and Rodarte accountable, are calling on the companies to donate all the profits from the cosmetics to Juarez-based charities. MAC’s got a long history of fusing charity and makeup. Since 1994, the company’s MAC AIDS fund has raised over $150 million for AIDS awareness and outreach on their Viva Glam lipsticks alone.

There are, of course, limits to consciousness-raising through consumerism–like that people might miss the point entirely. Laura Dishman, writing for, praised MAC for turning a PR nightmare into "an opportunity to give back." Dishman wrote:

Likely it will take more than the questionable appeal of slapping on a coat of "Ghosttown" chalky lipstick to discourage devotees from lining up and buying when the entire collection makes its department store debut on September 15. Especially if they know the proceeds are going to help the victims in Juarez.

And bloggers from New York Magazine’s fashion blog The Cut, which has been diligently covering the issue, remain unconcerned with the Mulleavys’ ignorance. Amy Odell writes:

In the end, it’s great that this collection can call attention to these issues in addition to being generally quite pretty.

This suggests that Kate and Laura Mulleavy, the sister-duo designers behind Rodarte, named their their blood-streaked blushes and ashen eyeshadows "Juarez," "Factory," and "Ghost town" to raise awareness about the high murder rate that’s had a devastating impact on Juarez’s migrant labor force. But in their apology, the Mulleavys mentioned only "the ethereal nature" of the Mexican landscape as the inspiration for their "desert palette." They distanced themselves from statements they made when their Juarez-inspired ready-to-wear Fall/Winter 2010 collection first debuted. Back in February, the sisters said they drew inspiration from the maquiladora workers who’d wake, dress, and commute to their factory jobs in the dark. They said they were taken with the idea of women as sleepwalkers.

PHOTO:  NEW YORK – FEBRUARY 18: Designers Kate and Laura Mulleavy of Rodarte attend the ‘Quicktake’: Rodarte exhibition opening party at the Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum on February 18, 2010 in New York City. (Photo by Mimi Ritzen Crawford/Getty Images)