Beauty influencer Mikayla Nogueira is embroiled in another TikTok controversy after viewers accused her of using false eyelashes in a video designed to advertise a specific mascara.
In a sponsored TikTok posted on Jan. 24, 2023, which now has over 15.4 million views, the makeup artist, who recently came under fire for saying her job as an influencer was difficult, partnered with L’Oréal to promote the brand’s Telescopic Lift Washable Mascara.
“This literally just changed my life,” she says, applying a first coat of mascara to one eye. The clip then cuts after she says she’s going to apply a second coat, with the influencer then reappearing with significantly longer and fuller lashes.
Mikayla claims in the clip that this is down to the mascara alone, as she gushes, “Look at the length. Do you see that? I am speechless.” However, the TikToker has been flooded with skepticism over the video, with TikTokers doubting her claims both with comments and with videos of their own.
Several commenters were upset over the video, claiming Mikayla betrayed their trust. “I truly truly am sad, I really did trust you,” one wrote. “I legit feel hurt. Ive been watching your stuff and have really been team Mikayla until now.”
Others appeared to identify the brand of false lashes Mikayla purportedly used, with commenters saying they “know Ardell Wisps when they see them.” Another common sentiment in the comments section was viewers saying they felt “gaslit,” as one fan wrote, “Mikayla, we love you, but be f*cking for real right now.”
In comments under the video, Nogueira doubled down, saying she did not add any false lashes in her video and that L’Oréal “would never allow that in a partnered post.”
At the time of writing, Nogueira hasn’t otherwise responded to claims that she used fake eyelashes, and the TikTok in question remains live. We reached out to Nogueria via the contact email listed in her Instagram bio and to L’Oréal via the email and phone contacts listed on its website. Both did not respond in time for the publication of this article.
TikTokers also resurfaced an old clip where Nogueira demonstrates how advertisers can easily trick users by putting on false lashes, saying, “I just lied straight to your face, and you probably believed it. These lashes, totally fake, and that’s what brands do, they lie to you about how things work. Would you have known these were false lashes? Maybe not.”
With “Mikayla Nogueira lashes” becoming a trending topic on TikTok, countless creators also stitched and duetted the beauty influencer to call her out for appearing to wear false lashes and, in turn, “misleading” her viewers.
“You aren’t gonna come on TikTok and insult our intelligence and just, like, think it’s gonna fly,” one TikToker said in a video with over 399,000 views.
On Twitter on Jan. 25, 2023, controversial influencer Jeffree Star also made a tweet, which now has over 2.3 million views, about influencers “lying to their audiences,” saying it makes him “SICK.” Users speculated the creator was referring to Nogueira’s mascara video. A publicist for Jeffree Star said he is unavailable to comment on this story, although his tweet was “not geared towards Mikayla.”
In a video by creator Sal Ali (@lifeofsal), which now has over 424,900 views, he speculated these responses from notable influencers could be chalked up to the makeup industry being “fueled by drama.” In fact, many creators in response to Nogueira’s mascara video ended up buying the mascara to try it out.
“The most financially successful influencers pre-pandemic were the ones that had the most controversy surrounding them. They sold the most products for brands,” Ali said in his video, “The tendency of the beauty industry is emotionally driven consumption of content and product. I can guarantee that a lot of people are going to be buying this mascara because now you want to know if it actually lives up to its hype.”
Passionfruit reached out to Sal Ali via Instagram message and did not hear back in time for the publication of this article.
Update 11:45am CT, Jan. 31: In a series of viral videos posted on TikTok after the publication of this article, influencer Jeffree Star commented in disapproval of the Nogueira lash controversy, reviewed the mascara product, and discussed drama and influence in the beauty influencer landscape.
Notorious influencer James Charles also chimed in on the situation in a viral TikTok. Charles and Star’s responses sparked debate about why controversial beauty creators tend to weigh in on viral incidents like these.