Sephora has ended its brand partnership with social media influencer Olivia Jade Giannulli, the daughter of actress Lori Loughlin and designer Mossimo Giannulli, in wake of a college admissions scandal enveloping her and her parents.
Giannulli, who goes by Olivia Jade online, fronted a cosmetics collaboration for the Paris-based cosmetics company that included a bronzer palette.
“After careful review of recent developments, we have made the decision to end the Sephora Collection partnership with Olivia Jade, effective immediately,” the company said in a statement to the Los Angeles Times on Thursday.
And it appears that other brands might be following suit: The web page for her Princess Polly collection is no longer available online. Clothing retailer Lulus said it hasn’t worked with her since August 2018 and has “no plans to do so in the future.” Hewlett-Packard, which had a one-time product campaign with Olivia Jade in 2017, has “removed the content from its properties.”
The Los Angeles Times reached out to all of Jade’s Instagram brand partners. Calvin Klein, Smashbox, and TooFaced declined to comment. Amazon Fashion, Windsor Store, Marc Jacobs Beauty, Smile Direct Club,
Tresemme and Clinique did not respond to a request for comment.
“We don’t have any current partnerships with Olivia and any past sponsorships were one off last year,” said a rep for the Boohoo clothing company.
But in the age of followers and subscribers, the outrage over Olivia Jade’s alleged involvement hasn’t hurt her numbers: On Tuesday, she boasted 1.2 million YouTube subscribers; by Thursday, that number had grown to 1.9 million. She also gained quite a few more followers on her Twitter and Instagram pages in wake of news of the scandal.
It’s the latest backlash against the 19-year-old, who was thrust further into the spotlight after prosecutors unveiled a massive fraud scheme to get children of the wealthy into some of America’s most elite schools.
The Sephora fallout comes as Hallmark’s parent company, Crown Media Family Network, announced it is no longer working with Loughlin and has stopped development of all productions involving her that run on its channels.
Olivia Jade, who has made no secret of her social-media priorities, is a freshman at the University of Southern California, and her parents are accused of paying mastermind William ‘Rick’ Singer, who has pleaded guilty to multiple charges, to get her and her older sister, Isabella, into the private university, according to court records.
The school said on Wednesday that students who have applied for admission in the current cycle — which is underway for autumn enrolment — and are allegedly tied to the scheme will be denied admission.
In a paid post for Prime Student, Amazon’s paid membership program for college students, Ms. Giannulli posed sitting on a bed, with the caption “Officially a college student! It’s been a few weeks since I moved into my dorm and I absolutely love it. I got everything I needed from Amazon with @primestudent and had it all shipped to me in just two-days.” (In a YouTube video posted in early September, Ms. Giannulli said that Amazon had “hooked me up with like, everything in my dorm.”
In another post, an advertisement for Smile Direct Club, a company that sells dental aligners, Ms. Giannulli wrote: “For back-to-school season, I’ve been using a doctor-directed, at-home invisible aligner treatment.”
The fall semester at her school began on Aug. 20; a day later, Ms. Giannulli announced on Twitter that she had just arrived in Fiji. In a YouTube video, she said that she had gone for work.
Also when news of the scandal broke, Olivia Jade was reported to have spent the day in the Bahamas on the yacht of Rick Caruso, chairman of USC’s board of trustees. According to TMZ, she was spending spring break there with his daughter, her friend Gianna Caruso.
On Tuesday, the day the fraud scheme was announced, Caruso implemented a “zero tolerance” policy regarding the behaviour of university employees allegedly involved in the scheme and fired “the alleged wrongdoers.”
Loughlin and Giannulli, the designer behind the Mossimo fashion brand, were arrested in Los Angeles this week and face charges including conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud for allegedly agreeing to pay bribes totalling $500,000 (Dh1.8 million) in exchange for having their two daughters designated as recruits to the USC crew team even though they did not participate in the sport.
Ms. Loughlin and Mr. Giannulli were charged with conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud, and were each released on $1 Million bail.
Dozens of people have been charged in the case, and a class-action lawsuit has been filed against the University of California, Los Angeles, USC and Yale.
With inputs from NYT