A few days ago, YouTube beauty blogger Vika Shapel posted a pic and video on Instagram showcasing half of her face painted in chocolate to promote an upcoming YouTube video she dubbed “the chocolate challenge.”
The “self-taught” makeup artist from Portland, Oregon, learned the hard way that it was not a good idea to start the fatally ill-advised “chocolate challenge.”
She excitedly took to Instagram, posting the image with the caption that read “Something fun is coming to YouTube, idk if there is a challenge like this but we haven’t seen it so I’m calling it the chocolate challenge. Come watch us transform into deep chocolate skin tones from our pasty pale.”
Of course, social media did not waste time in letting Shapel know how they felt about her so called “Chocolate Challenge”, and it was nothing nice. On Twitter, angry users began chiming in with critiques due to the challenge’s overwhelming likeness to blackface.
this "challenge" doesn't exist because people have common sense???????? the disrespect... pic.twitter.com/j1SEXPdWhr— Jasmine Brown (@JasMeannnn) July 9, 2017
Why?! What do I have to do to convince people that my skin tone is not a trend/a mask/a makeup challenge/ a new concept for entertainment?!— • A R I E L L E • (@ArielleMonai) July 9, 2017
@vika97662612 you don't get points for doing blackface and trying to call it the chocolate challenge. Just stop.— Unburnt (@agent_ryan013) July 9, 2017
The backlash was swift, prompting the blogger to not only delete her post but also deactivate her social media accounts.
According to Yahoo! Beauty, Vika subsequently received she released an apology stating, “I wasn’t aware of the whole black-face concept before people began commenting it on the photo. I would like to apologize to people that were hurt or offended by my post, and it won’t happen again.”
She also told them, "My accounts were deactivated due to overwhelming hateful responses. I wasn’t an active social media user before; it was just whenever desire sparked, so whenever I have that, then I will come back.”
Hopefully, if and when Shapel decides to come back to the social media universe her concepts next time around will be a whole more thoughtful.
Banner/thumbnail credit: Reuters