Skip to main contentSkip to footer

Why I as a Latina am not upset about Hailey Bieber’s brownie glazed lips

Careless? Perhaps. Malicious? Not on purpose.

Natalie Salmon
Fashion Digital Editor
September 28, 2022
Share this:

Sign up to HELLO! Fashion for style tips, cultural insights, must-have items, and more

By entering your details, you are agreeing to HELLO! Magazine User Data Protection Policy. You can unsubscribe at any time. For more information, please click here.

Hailey Bieber has been the subject of online vitriol in the past few weeks, all due to her 'starting' a 'new' TikTok trend, brownie glazed lips, following up on her now viral donut glazed manicure

Around one month ago, Hailey posted a TikTok video with the caption, "ready for all the fall things including brownie glazed lips." Critics of Hailey have lambasted her on social media, for adopting the trend and ostensibly passing it off as her own, with one saying, "So basically the exact same color combo our tias have been using." Another commented, "Latinas have been rocking this color combo since the 80's, Honey!!," someone said "brownie glazed lips? as a Latina I am used to it being referred as "tomar de la Olla de frijol" well, she is bringing back something that never left" and, "You meant 90s Latin inspired lip combo." as well as, "Soooo where is our credit?"

MORE: Hailey Bieber makes Barbiecore chic again in pink at Saint Laurent show

RELATED: Hailey Bieber pays tribute to her Brazilian roots with latest look


Hailey Bieber attended the Saint Laurent show this week amidst the crticism of her TikTok video

So why exactly is Hailey Bieber becoming the subject of hate for her 'Brownie Glazed Lips' video? Well of course the trend is nothing new, for decades Black and Latin women have been the purveyors of the trend; dark lip liner finished with lighter brown lipstick and lashings of lipgloss. Think Selena Quintanilla, and you’re on the right lines.  

And why am I, myself as a Latina, not mad? Growing up most of my life in Venezuela, fortunately near my mother’s native country of Brazil, I am proud to be Latina. As a pre-tween I was proud to speak Spanish and Portuguese, proud of the Latino-pop movement which made Latin celebrities, like Shakira and Jennifer Lopez just as popular as Britney Spears and Christina Aguilaera. 

MORE: We can’t get over the glazed donut manicure: a step-by-step tutorial

RELATED: Hailey Bieber reveals exactly how she achieves her signature glazed skin


ready for all the fall things including brownie glazed lips 🥹✨✨✨🤎🤎🤎

♬ cant erase - weeping audios

I didn't realise how important that experience was for me until now. When it came time to playing dress-up (as a little girl in an International School with mainly American class-mates) I used to always be cast as Pocahontas or Mulan, even when I wanted to be Cinderella. It just takes one look at the comments surrounding Halle Bailey who is cast as Ariel in the new live-action The Little Mermaid film to realise how important it is to have representation in the media. Halle Bailey has been the subject of unfair vitriol, overt racism, and over 1 million ‘dislikes’ on the film's YouTube trailer. This can not be allowed to happen. 

I was proud as a little girl to admire women who looked and sounded more like me, and I can only imagine what the feeling is like for young black girls seeing Halle as Ariel. It's a groundbreaking moment, like Brandy cast as Cinderella before her. It's important and it's welcome. Seeing Jennifer Lopez singing in Spanish growing up, with that trademark 'Latina lipstick', which I tried my best copy aged 10, made me proud to look Latin. 

I want to stipulate here that my ethnic background is mixed. Like Mrs. Bieber I am half-Brazilian, half-Caucasian. Growing up my mother sported long black hair, and she has dark olive skin or is a ‘morena’ as it’s known in Brazil. There’s a lot of discourse about whether Brazilians can actually be considered Latina, as the country is not hispanic. Vox explains "Brazilians are Latino because the country is located in Latin America. But Brazilians aren't considered Hispanic because the country's primary language is Portuguese." However many Brazilians will describe themselves as Latinas. When I found out that Hailey Bieber was half-Brazilian, on her mother’s side, I felt this strange camaraderie. I was happy when she posted photos of traditional Brazilian food on Instagram recently. Other than recent Grammy award winner Anitta there haven’t been many famous Brazilians that have crossed over into global superstardom. I felt like Hailey represented a small part of this. 

MORE: Hailey Bieber can't get enough of this Tiffany bracelet and neither can we

RELATED: Hailey Bieber just revealed her new clothing range and we're obsessed


Jennifer Lopez in Maid in Manhattan

Because of my mixed background I’ve inherited a freckled face from my ginger, British dad. So I often get asked "where I’m really from" (don’t get me started on that one.) Oftentimes people assume I am Asian, or mixed-Asian. A friend of mine from the Philippines recently started calling me 'Fasian' aka Fake-Asian, as the assumption happens so often publicly. In my previous role at Vogue, our Costa Rican beauty editor told me I could be considered 'white passing'. So I do realise I represent a very limited number of Latinas, which in reality represent a tremendously diverse and beautiful ethnic group. That's why I loved the Pixar film Encanto, with its many characters, it represented the genetic diversity that exists within the Latin world and culture (which spans from Afro-Latinos to Hispanic and European-descendants.) 

Hailey's mother Kennya Deodato is a Latin woman from Brazil. If Hailey Bieber looked more like the stereotypical idea of what a Latin woman is "supposed to look like" (dark hair long hair, brown eyes) the video would have perhaps been less problematic. But this also needs to be addressed. Early on in her career Sofia Vergara had to dye her hair from blonde to dark brown to fit the Hollywood stereotype of what it means to be a Latin woman. 

Only when she had asserted her fame and become a TV superpower, the highest-paid woman on American television (no easy feat for an actress from Colombia) was she allowed to revert back to her natural lighter locks. There is so much discourse about Latin women, and it does hurt to see the stereotypes on TV. Latin women are often the sexy-mistress (Eva Mendes in The Women) or commonly the maid. Seeing J Lo, with her olive features, transform from hotel cleaning woman into society belle in Maid in Manhattan was another key moment in my childhood which in retrospect made me realise how important representation is, and how powerful it is to dispel these myths.

MORE: Hailey Bieber just wore the 'cool-girls' favourite underwear brand

RELATED: Hailey Bieber wears the 'ultimutt' dog mom outfit


Hailey's 'donut manicure' went viral after she sported the trend at the 2022 Met Gala

Nevertheless, truly I do not think Hailey was purposely trying to diminish the origins of this beauty trend. In her original video she never said she invented the look, and I think she just was riffing off her viral nail trend calling it "Brownie Glazed Lips" because it was dessert based like her "donut" nails. Should she have given credit to the much overlooked POC beauty community and her Latin roots, by perhaps calling it Latina Lips? Yes. Should she have done her homework and found out who started the trend before her as someone in a position of tremendous global influence? It would have been nice. But does she deserve to be cancelled? No. Perhaps she was incredibly careless, but in my opinion she wasn’t being malicious. 

IIt’s a great thing to see the beauty looks I grew up with come to the fore and be represented in mainstream media. And hopefully people will start to pay a little more attention to the Latin, Black and Afro-Latina beauty culture, and Hailey can be reminded how special it is to belong to the Latin community.

Like this story? Sign up to our Hello! Fashion newsletter to get your weekly 'Fashion Fix' delivered straight to your inbox.

More Hello! Fashion

See more