Online fast fashion retailer Shein was under fire last week when shoppers became aware of a racist phone case that was being sold on the retailer’s website. The phone case showed a design of a handcuffed Black person being outlined in chalk by a white hand, and was advertised as a new product retailing for $1.50. Screenshots of the phone case were posted online and instantly sparked criticism from customers as many shoppers were shocked to find that the retailer would sell something so bold, especially in light of the racial reckoning we’ve experienced the last year.
Customers quickly called the company out on social media and asked for an explanation. “A white hand.. doing a chalk outline of a black person laying there (presumably de*d) in handcuffs and this was supposed to show support?? How? QUICKLY,” one Twitter user tweeted.
While another Twitter user posted a screenshot of the phone case from Shein’s website telling the brand that she “won’t send you another dollar after this.”
The company has since apologized for the insensitive phone case, tweeting the following as a reply to J. Monae’s tweet, “you’ve brought to our attention that the art is being interpreted as racist which is contrary to its actual meaning. For those we offended we sincerely apologize.”
In another tweet, Shein revealed that they hadn’t even received permission to use the art on the phone case from the original artist, Jean Jullien, who posted the image on Instagram in response to the police shooting of Michael Brown in 2014.
Shein has since removed the case from their retail site.
This isn’t the first time Shein has received backlash for racial insensitivity. Last July, the company announced that they were forming a product review committee “with staff from different cultures and religions,” after receiving backlash for selling a “metal swastika pendant” necklace and Muslim prayer mats as decorative carpets.
The company then issued an apology the company on their Instagram page, telling followers that they “vow to do a much better job in educating ourselves.”
Wonder how that education is going…
Online Fast Fashion Retailer Shein Removes Racist Phone Case From Website After Receiving Backlash was originally published on hellobeautiful.com