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We know social media has a diversity problem. This is a fact. But have you ever thought about how this diversity problem extends to the Metaverse? It’s true. TikTok beauty queen Emira D’spain and Clinique are working to change that. According to the brand, only 20 percent of users and creators are women, less than 16 percent of all NFT artists are female, and NFTs with avatars of color and disability are valued 50 percent lower than white avatars. This Pride month is the perfect time to bring some diversity into the Metaverse.
Clinique’s Metaverse More Like Us launch includes a diverse group of makeup artists and creators, including Tess Daly, Sheika Daley and Emira D’spain, who designed makeup looks for virtual avatars. On Clinique.com and the brand’s social media channels, customers can see the avatar renderings with the products that inspired the makeup looks and purchase them right there.
If you’re a little confused about the Metaverse, don’t worry — D’spain is too. (Same.) But she’s still stoked to create makeup looks for avatars and make it a more inclusive space. Each artist was tasked with creating two makeup looks for the campaign. D’spain came up with her looks, applied them to herself and sent Clinique selfies of what the makeup should look like. From there, a graphic designer and creative team translated the looks onto avatars.
D’spain says she’s been using Clinique products since she was 10 years old so it wasn’t hard to choose products to use. “I definitely worked with the eyeliner a lot,” she tells STYLECASTER. “I feel like that was one of my favorites. Any of the Cheek Pop, the blush-cheek combos and a lip.” She also calls Clinique foundation “seriously underrated.”
Even though D’spain creates intricate makeup looks on TikTok every day, she’s never done anything like this.
“I feel like this is such a new aesthetic for me and I’m really excited because I kind of want to move more into this space,” she says. Because when it comes to the Internet, Web2 or Web3, you have to look towards the future. Like, what’s next for the TikTok beauty community?
“I see the the space of the viral product turning more into the space of the viral looks and more of the viral trends and aesthetics,” D’spain says. “I can see the Metaverse in the future potentially influencing all of that in the same way that TikTok did.”
She would know. D’spain has only been on TikTok since the beginning of the pandemic and she already has more than 958k followers — and counting. She blew up relatively quickly because her followers feel like she’s their friend.
“Before I was so focused on like teaching and educating my fans [about makeup] and I was kind of like, at the end of the day, there’s so many people who educate that are much more well versed than I and I would look to them,” she says. “And so I’m like, ‘why? What’s my differentiating factor?’ And I think what they found and what my differentiating factor was, which is, in my opinion, comedy and making people feel like I’m on FaceTime with them.” She’s your bestie.
I tell her I also think her honesty is what makes her stand out. Recently, she’s been open about getting a BBL. She even shows me the BBL pillow she’s currently sitting on. She says her “get ready with me” videos are most popular because they’re three minutes long and she’s able to be more personal with her audience.
This same audience has taught her things as well, like the freedom to be creative. “I truly realized that there’s no wrong way to do makeup,” she says. “There are certain techniques that would look better on certain faces but there are so many ways to do makeup and so many different trends that spur from that.” She recalls the “2015 YouTube beauty era” when content creators were all doing the same looks. Now, everyone put their own personal twist on it.
Now, this is even true in the Metaverse.