A Glasgow-based fashion brand that’s popular among beauty gurus and influencers is facing a ton of backlash online over its decision to create a separate social media account for plus-size and minority women. Following the criticism flowing through twitter and the brand’s own comment section, they addressed the mishap calling it a “serious error of judgement.”
Oh Polly, which prides itself on being created “for girls, by girls” was under attack after people online came across their secondary Instagram account, “Oh Polly Inclusive”.
The account–which has since been deactivated–featured a mixture of plus-sized models and influencers along with women from a range of different ethnicities, which is vastly different from the women who are represented on Oh Polly’s official verified page, which is known to feature predominantly lighter-skinned, slender models.
Many people caught wind of Oh Polly’s separate “inclusive” page when beauty guru and Youtuber Alissa Ashley posted screenshots to her Twitter page, criticizing the brand for their segregation. She posed the question, “What makes these women not suitable for your main page?”
A screenshot in Alissa’s replies pointed out Oh Polly’s explanation of the separate page, which they explained at the time as being “Not just about posting different body types! This is about celebrating a wider range of people in our community that are not necessarily professional models or popular influencers.”
Beside this other Instagram profile being a bad idea, creating a separate page to promote inclusivity is obviously pretty contradictory–by pushing these other women to a different page, Oh Polly is doing the exact opposite of being diverse.
After facing all of this criticism, Oh Polly has deleted their “inclusive” page and also issued a statement to Buzzfeed News, apologizing for the situation.
A spokesperson for the company said: “Oh Polly made a serious error of judgement for which we take full responsibility and sincerely apologise. We established a new page with the specific aim of allowing our customers to discuss a wider range of issues….We have a close relationship with our customers around the world and always value their feedback. Improving diversity remains an absolute priority for us across all of our channels. We promise to continue listening to everyone in the Oh Polly community and, most importantly, learn from this mistake.”