Why popular cosmetics company Lush Cosmetics is pulling the plug on social media

Elaina Athans Image
Tuesday, November 23, 2021
Why a popular cosmetics company is pulling the plug on social media
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Lush Cosmetics is deactivating its social media account on Black Friday, vowing not to return until the platforms pose less of a risk to users' mental health.

Lush Cosmetics is a popular company selling a variety of beauty products. It has 4 million followers on Instagram, a social media fan base stronger than those of major retailers such as Macy's, Best Buy, and Nordstrom.

But the account will be deactivated in a few days, leading to praise from some and disappointment from others.

"I love bath bombs. I use them all the time," said consumer Teresa Leviner.

The 19-year-old has ordered a bunch of products from Lush through its Instagram page.

Leviner is shocked that the company is giving up on pushing goods through social media.

Lush is pulling the plug on Black Friday, which is one of the biggest shopping days of the year.

"They're so popular. So many bath bombs are trending and people are making their own ones out of kits," Leviner said.

The company said it won't return until the social media platforms are safer and don't pose a danger to people's mental health.

There has been a strong push recently to keep children safe online.

North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein recently announced that he is leading a nationwide investigation into Instagram.

He's planning to look into how "these platforms harm our young people."

A former Facebook manager turned whistleblower testified recently before Congress saying that there needs to be better oversight.

"The choices being made inside of Facebook are disastrous for our children, for our public safety, for our privacy and for our democracy," said Frances Haugen.

The Social Institute is a Triangle-based resource working to help parents and young adults find a healthy balance.

"It is important that teenagers have positive strategies that they can use to support their mental health and well-being online," said Social Institute Founder and CEO Laura Tierney

She is offering a few suggestions to keep kids safe.

"Just like schools have sex ed or driver's ed, it's important that parents and schools are coming together in partnership to make this education around social media and technology available to students," said Tierney.

She is encouraging parents to help their children find and follow positive role models.

Tierney also says you can adjust a screen-time setting on devices that could limit how much time each day your child spends on a platform, and disable the comment feature on apps to help take back the reins.

"(We have power) as social media users controlling our attention and controlling our self-esteem, rather than letting a company control it at the end of the day," said Tierney.