Huda Kattan Calls Out the Beauty Industry as Sexist

Huda Kattan is a self-made entrepreneur and beauty mogul. She is one of the highest earning beauty influencers on social media and the founder of Huda Beauty, one of the most popular brands on TikTok.
Kattan is also very outspoken, often using her social media accounts to spread awareness of issues that affect women and more.
Recently, Kattan gave an interview with BBC in which she sharply criticized the beauty industry. Below are some highlights from that interview.

Kattan Calls the Beauty Industry Sexist

“I think the beauty industry is sexist,” she told BBC. “It objectifies women a lot of times. It really can boil women down to just their appearance.”
Kattan claims she knows how frustrating it is to be judged by her appearance.
She also shared that when she first became a businesswoman, some people in the industry did not take her seriously.
“Oftentimes we’d be in a meeting and instead of making eye contact with me they would make eye contact with my husband and completely ignore me.”
“Don’t talk to me, talk to her,” her husband would say – but they would just continue addressing him, Kattan recalled.

Kattan’s Thoughts on Inclusivity and Representation in the Industry

Kattan also bemoaned the slow progress of the beauty industry in embracing inclusivity and representation.
Kattan is the daughter of immigrants who moved from Iraq to Tennessee and says she was always made to feel that she was unattractive.
As a result, it’s a priority for her to sell products in deeper shades and foundations that match a wide range of skin tones.
While she admits the industry may be moving in the right direction, she argues it’s going at “snail’s pace.”
“I’ve been in the labs with the manufacturers and I’ve said to them, ‘I need a richer skin tone product’. And I’ve seen them literally put black pigment in, [but] people’s skins are made of many different tones,” she explained.
“I think there is still a lack of understanding. And it really comes down fundamentally to the manufacturer, even some brands.”

Related Beauty Insights

“In recent years, the beauty industry has made strides to become more inclusive, but there is still room for improvement,” says Clare Hennigan, senior beauty analyst at Mintel. Read Mintel’s insights on the rising demand for inclusivity in beauty.

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