Excited because her makeup brand has a lot of buzz around it right now — Lime Crime is featured in the November issue of Nylon magazine, and I’ve heard many a beauty blogger rave over the range of crazy colors available in their Magic Dust eyeshadows and Candyfuture Lipsticks.
Hesitant because I’ve also noticed many a beauty blogger talking umbrage with Doe Deere herself, and disparaging Lime Crime as a brand.
You can read some of those posts:
here at the Examiner (those comments are off the chain)
here at Lipstick and Lightsabers (WHAT a great blog name!)
and…you get the picture.
But for every hater, there’s a congratulator. There’s an army of Lime Crime and Doe Deere fans out there — say hello to Team Candyfuture! And besides the people who admire Doe’s appearance and personality, there are those who really are intrigued by the makeup itself, all chatter aside. I fall into the latter camp.
I heard of Lime Crime before all of the brou-ha-ha began, and the reason I heard about them was because people were raving over this hot new makeup brand, all packaged in pink with sparkly unicorns, dedicated to super intense pigments and bright colors. And I realize there’s a reason just about every post about Doe Deere online generates hundreds of bickering comments — she’s a fascinating figure. And the creator of a makeup brand that targets a very passionate audience.
When we started our interview, I offered Doe two options. We can start out fun and lighthearted and talk about the makeup itself…or we can wade immediately into the controversy and address it right off the bat. Doe chose the latter.
“From what I’ve seen so far, I’m getting positive responses. I’m getting overwhelming support. And it’s just a handful of people who are all linking to each other, First it was one blog, then there were a few more, but they’re all regurgitating the same stuff,” she declared. Doe is soft spoken, she’s got a charming Russian accent, she’s polite and quite sweet to converse with. But make no mistake, homegirl is about her business, and she has worked hard to build her brand.
I broached the topic of the offensive online comments that had been circulating, supposedly written by Doe herself. One that only an extremely foolish businesswoman would write. She denied writing that outright, and in no uncertain terms.
“Certainly not. I would at least know my own company’s name and how to spell it. It’s Lime Crime. Two words,” she retorted, much to my relief.
That’s one of the major things that’s been bugging me about the complaints against Lime Crime — e mails and online comments supposedly left by Doe seemed so misguided, and out of character for someone who presents themselves as being dedicated to their business. A business owner leaving public messages in which they refer to their customers as idiots = business suicide in this online age. It didn’t make sense to me, and Doe was quick to refute it.
“The only reliable source of information is my blog and my Twitter. I do not comment on other blogs. So any comments that are being passed around aren’t from me.”
“I built my brand on the internet, and I of all people would recognize the power of the internet. I am an internet phenomenon. So I knew I had to address this directly, online,” she explained, in reference to the YouTube video she recently released, in which she speaks out against the critics.
To counteract the accusations that Lime Crime was merely repackaging makeup made by wholesale companies, Doe released a YouTube video in which she makes eyeshadow and a post on her blogazine titled So How Do You Make Lipstick? — and that’s where she draws the line.
“I think they have set an unreasonable standard. Of course I am not going to tell you who is my manufacturer, what are my formulas. Not alot of companies would be as open as I have been. But from now on, I will document every single thing I make.”
Lest you think making makeup is a glamorous task, Doe assures me — “It can be quite laborious and tedious.”
The whole Lime Crime controversy and interview made me realize — WOW this is a world I am completely unfamiliar with. Also, I really don’t think enough about makeup. Or what goes into it. For the most part (with obvious exceptions like Valana Minerals and B.L.A.C, brands I’ve blogged about before), I tend to wear mainstream brands that are available in the drugstore or department store. And it has never occurred to me to try to find out — hey, can I find a replica for Bobbi Brown or MAC or NARS or Kat Von D’s makeup or Lauren Luke’s makeup from a cosmetics pigment wholesaler and make it myself, at home? But there are ardent makeup fans who are doing just that — swatching, comparing and experimenting, blogging about their experience and repping niche makeup brands that truly provide something for everyone. That is awesome. The internet, it is vast and amazing. And I learn something new from it every day.
I knew there was much more I could ask Doe about the online witch hunt going on against her, I could have asked her more about the ongoing Mineral Makeup Mutiny and her thoughts on what else she could do to appease her critics…but I honestly don’t know enough about this online world and the manufacturing of cosmetics to ask more pointed questions. She was certainly willing to answer them, and I appreciated that. But I was ready to talk about this makeup!
Lime Crime is not for the timid. It’s for the young and the young at heart, girly girls who love pink and unicorns and bright colors, who may cite Rainbow Bright or Punky Brewster as style influences. As Doe describes it, it’s “statement makeup.”
I was lucky enough to review two Lime Crime lipsticks, so allow me to break down my results for you.
The packaging is SUPER cute and in the tube the colors are vibrant. On my lips, My Beautiful Rocket was way more subdued than I hoped.
Apparently I need a deeper orange to really make an impact on my skin tone. Also I tend to have dry lips that are prone to peeling…this particular lip color called attention to my peeling lips RIGHT AWAY. I had to rub it off, scrub my lips (a little MAC Volcanic Ash Scrub worked marvelously), then reapply. And the claim that the lipsticks go from tube to lips in one stroke…that didn’t happen for me with My Beautiful Rocket. I had to really layer it on, for it to be even and opaque on my lips.
I think this color would work best for those with lighter complexions, or darker complexions. On a darker skin tone this color would pop! On me it just kind of looked peachy and regular.
But Centrifuchsia, that was a whole different story! Here I am, trying to give you fierce.
Did that work? I was trying to “smile with my eyes”!
I really like this color. I went into it expecting an uber bright obnoxious fuchsia, but instead it turned out to be really wearable and the kind of lippie that would add fun impact to my winter wardrobe. And it lived up to the claim, and totally covered my lips with high impact color with one stroke. REALLY high impact color. In fact, I washed my face, went to bed, and woke up the next day to find my lips were still really, really pink. This worked almost like a lip stain, for me. So if you’re looking for a hot pink lippie that lasts, this could be it.
Lime Crime lipsticks are smooth, not drying (but I always slick on a little regular balm first, because of my dry lips), and the packaging is youthful, fun, super cute. They cost $16 a tube.
What’s next for Lime Crime? Lots.
“We are coming out with an expansion line of our lipsticks. There are going to be a lot of surprises — colors that are wearable, but still unusual. I mean, it’s Lime Crime!” says Doe.
Now that she’s been fashion forward and released the wildest colors in the wheel, is Lime Crime going back to make the kind of colors that are considered more traditionally wearable?
“It’s not going back, it’s going forward! But before it was about being as bright as possible. Now it’s about sheen, or how about a duo tone. Now it’s not as loud. It’ll be a more well rounded collection.”
And there you have it. The stunning model of color you see in photos above is Atim Birungi – I love her hair, I love her lips, I love her style! Gorgeous! And if you click on the Lime Crime site, you can see her lips modeling different lipstick shades, to give you an idea of the color impact on women of varied ethnicities.
Now that you know the Lime Crime story from Doe’s perspective, what do you think? Would this be a brand you support? Or do you agree with the dissidents? I would love to hear your views either way — and Doe’s reading, too! If you’re new to Afrobella — hello and welcome! I do monitor my comments closely for profanity and offensive content. But if you’ve got some respectful and constructive advice for Doe, or her makeup brand in general, please feel free to leave a comment!