#RareBeautyCosmetics: THE TRUTH

Despite recent events, I am still excited to celebrate #RareBeautyCosmetics fifth year in business this coming Spring! As many of you may now know, I filed a Petition to Cancel Trademark against #RareBeauty in September of 2021. This mark was wrongfully obtained by #RareBeauty when they filed in November of 2017 AFTER my brand #RareBeautyCosmetics had already been in business for more than six months.

Shortly after I filed for the cancellation last year, I received an email from the Chief Digital Officer of #RareBeauty asking to have a “friendly” conversation to settle this matter privately. I agreed to hear him out. Unfortunately, that series of conversations proved the #RareBeauty team to be unethical and uninterested in settling the matter. During one of the conversations, their Chief Digital Officer tried to bribe me into selling my brand name and inventory to them after warning me that they were prepared to “drag” me through expensive legal proceedings, which he was certain I could not afford.

Their goal was to pay me as little as possible in exchange for silence and giving up the right to my brand so they could secure their registration, which should never have been granted in the first place.  I have put my heart and soul into my brand, and #RareBeauty has no right to take it from me.  Following that final conversation which included the insulting offer, I cut off all direct communication with their team and hired an attorney to represent my brand.

On January 29, 2022, #RareBeauty filed a lawsuit against #RareBeautyCosmetics in an attempt to not only intimidate me but also retaliate against me for not accepting their offer. Their filing is full of inaccuracies. My lawyer and I never threatened anyone on their team, nor did we give an ultimatum. In fact, their lawyer threatened me! She told my lawyer she would drown me in thousands of dollars of legal fees plus she made comments in relation to me not being able to financially or emotionally withstand the pressure that would come from this matter going any further, despite the fact that it was their request to keep things quiet. What hurts me the most is the clear aggression and threats hidden behind fame and money on their behalf.

#RareBeauty claims to be a mission-driven company, that believes in mental health awareness. If that is true, why threaten and lie about me? If they truly felt they did nothing illegal, unethical, or fraudulent; why offer me any sum of money? Why try to bribe me? Why make several attempts to settle this matter privately? Why sue me in federal court to avoid the TTAB cancellation process I had already started months prior? Why threaten to bury me in legal fees while condescendingly suggesting I can’t afford it? It just doesn’t make sense and clearly shows that their claim to care for others’ mental health is a lie when their bottom line and business practices are at issue.

I refuse to allow this company to break or silence me. For the past 48 hours I have been harassed by #SelenaGomez fans and supporters. I have worked hard on and for my brand #RareBeautyCosmetics. I take pride in being a black, female-owned small business. I will see this through. The spokesperson for #RareBeauty, #SelenaGomez, recently shared with the #NYTimes how her company aims to help and support mental health of others YET this company has displayed nothing but toxic and aggressive energy toward me since I decided to speak up. Her fans have been constantly messaging me disgusting remarks while the FACT still remains, #RareBeauty wrongfully obtained the trademark registration. I launched and made my first sale in Spring of 2017 which gives #RareBeautyCosmetics PRIORITY rights to the trademark name. I have receipts, bank statements, and customer testimony to prove everything. #RareBeautyCosmetics was used in commerce prior to the filing date of #RareBeauty and is the rightful owner of the RARE BEAUTY name. I will not give up. I will see this through!

25 thoughts on “#RareBeautyCosmetics: THE TRUTH

  1. Krystal

    So why didn’t you legally have the name trademarked like the other beauty brand did? If you did it properly it would’ve been a non issue. Whether it’s ethically right is irrelevant if it’s not legally right.

    Liked by 1 person

    • KeSheena Heard

      Krystal, thank you for your response. You are correct! If its not legal, everything else is irrelevant. Stay tuned and subscribe to my blog post as I will continue to release updates as we work through this matter. Again, thank you for your response.

      Like

  2. Kerry Smith

    I am a little confused, if the name was not trademarked prior to operating a business, how can the business own it? surely the owner should have trademarked the name before commencing business operations, to ensure their legal claim to the name, which is what the rare beauty tesm actually did. Can you claim you own the name, if you didn’t attempt to trademark it until after somebody else had already done so? I dint think just because you used that name, it belongs to you until you have actually legally trademarked it. Point in case, the inventor of the Rubik’s Cube dud not trademark the design, just the name, so many other companies made money from his toy. Maybe a little legal advice before starting a business regarding trademarks and branding ownership should have been conducted? Rare Beauty was not given the trademark in error, clearly nobody else had trademarked it prior to their application, or they would have been been refused. if I am incorrect in my assumptions, please correct me

    Liked by 1 person

    • KeSheena Heard

      Hi Kerry, thank you for your response. I have no problem clarifying some things for you. First, they filed with an “intent to use” meaning they clearly admitted to not using the brand name in commerce when they filed in 2017 nor any of the years following UNTIL their launch in 2020. I understand your thoughts and opinions but do note, I have a lawyer representing me in this matter and I will not stop nor allow myself to be silenced. #TheTruth will fully come out and may the rightful owner win in the end. I hope you have a blessed evening and again, thank you for your response.

      Like

  3. Sian

    I know you’re probably getting a tonne of hate. I don’t know how this will play out legally, and I’m not a customer of either brand, just a random person who watches beauty YouTube. Nonetheless, I hope you’re taking care of yourself mentally, and I just wanted to send some positive vibes from Australia amidst what I’m sure is a torrent of bad ones. No doubt this is super stressful and I couldn’t read this blog and not send some kind of message. Sorry you’re going through all this. 💗

    Liked by 1 person

    • KeSheena Heard

      I want you to know your kind words were NEEDED in this moment! THANK YOU! I appreciate it and I trust God will see me through this. THANK YOU AGAIN.

      Like

  4. Amanda

    I watch a ton of Beauty YouTube and didn’t know about all this until Sunday. I’m praying that you get what you rightfully worked so hard for and that you can have inner peace through this process.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. TLandis

    Bless you. I can’t imagine working so hard for something to have someone try to rip it apart. My family went through a situation that almost broke us but for God it made us stronger. Lifting your business, family, and you in prayer

    Liked by 1 person

    • KeSheena Heard

      Thank you for your comment and prayers. I have been praying over my business since it was only an idea and although this is very tough, I will see it through. God has me and MY business covered.

      Like

    • KeSheena Heard

      Thank you for your kind words. It indeed sucks to have celebrity and her team publically lie and manipulate a situation that they are completely wrong in. I highly doubt they thought I would speak up for myself or my brand but I will see this through. Thank you again for the kinds words!

      Like

  6. Beauty Lover

    Hi Kesheena. I hope you are having a wonderful day, and even though I don’t know you personally (or Selena Gomez & her company, for that matter) I started following your story from YT, ‘What’s up in Makeup’ and am curious about a few things..
    I know your business means a lot to you, as with any small business owner just starting out. I am just as ignorant with Trademark Laws as any random consumer could be.. and I also understand that what information has been shared could be false.. but instead of fighting against such a big money business why couldn’t you get a settlement? Where you do get a lump sum for your current products with the branding (which are easily reproduced with that money) and then sit down with an advisor to figure out what vision you want for your brand/business.. you could use this to start fresh.. I promise I understand fighting for something you care about, but big corporations CAN afford to drag out court proceedings for YEARS. This is not unheard of. However, I feel like you are taking on a fight which you cannot win.. I’ve seen the website and it doesn’t seem like you’ve really established yourself in any distinctive way nor do you have comparable products that would give you enough business to afford all this bad publicity.. That is why you shouldn’t continue fighting this losing battle, because it’s ruining any chance you have at success. I’m sorry babygirl but you should have trademarked the name before you started business or shortly there after. ‘Intent to Use’ is still more than you have on your side at this point and your lawyer is only using you for money if they told you that this case is in your favor…

    Like I said, I PROMISE I’m unbiased. I want you to succeed because black women deserve so much more than you’ve been given throughout history. This is just a mess of a story, and it doesn’t look good for you. I’m sorry.

    Liked by 1 person

    • KeSheena Heard

      Hello, thank you for your comment. I will be releasing a Q&A soon. Be sure to tune in, I plan to answer some of the questions you asked.

      Like

  7. ella Parker

    I 100% support small business but this case seems like quite a hard battle to win. I admire your persistence but within this case it kind of seems like a loosing battle

    I understand this is your passion but I would hate to see you accidentally place yourself into a worse situation then the current, especially given her team has a pretty solid case and have enough money to make sure they can fill the gaps. I’m especially worried about their intent of making you not only pay your own legal fees in a loss but four their bills as well

    We all have her passion projects but this seems like a significant bind that may not be worth the risks. Nonetheless I wish you the best able a beautiful black woken but I really don’t think the case is worth the possible looses. Celebrities don’t play fair as is and the fact that rare beauty has soo many large connections with major industry players is especially worrying as even if you win they could still do some major jeopardising behind the scenes of the wider industry – and that would be the least of the worried seeing as they aren’t planning on letting the case be an easy win

    Ultimately best wishes to you and all those on your side

    Liked by 1 person

    • KeSheena Heard

      Hi Elle, thank you for your comment but it proves my exact point. All of the information released in that lawsuit came from the #RareBeauty team, not me or my lawyer. All of it is lies. That was strategic and done in an attempt to paint a negative picture of me and brand in hopes of me folding under pressure. Elle, the amount of hate mail and evil comments I’ve been receiving since January 29th(the filling of their suit) is sickening especially when the FACT still remains, I have priority rights to the brand.

      Although it may seem like it to you, it’s not a hard battle to win at all. It actually quite simple, they’re just trying to use their fame and money to pressure me into giving up ownership to MY brand and I will not. We haven’t responded to their lawsuit yet nor I have released MY facts to the case. It saddens me that you and so many others are saying how you support small businesses but then proceed to say things like it’s a losing battle going against a celebrity for that same small business. It sounds like a contradiction to me but again, thank you for your comment! Enjoy the rest of your day.

      Like

  8. ella Parker

    I 100% support small business but this case seems like quite a hard battle to win. I admire your persistence but within this case it kind of seems like a loosing battle

    I understand this is your passion but I would hate to see you accidentally place yourself into a worse situation then the current, especially given her team has a pretty solid case and have enough money to make sure they can fill the gaps. I’m especially worried about their intent of making you not only pay your own legal fees in a loss but four their bills as well

    We all have her passion projects but this seems like a significant bind that may not be worth the risks. Nonetheless I wish you the best able a beautiful black woken but I really don’t think the case is worth the possible looses. Celebrities don’t play fair as is and the fact that rare beauty has soo many large connections with major industry players is especially worrying as even if you win they could still do some major jeopardising behind the scenes of the wider industry – and that would be the least of the worried seeing as they aren’t planning on letting the case be an easy win

    Ultimately best wishes to you and all those on your side .

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Loraine

    I’m not sure about this case but they are many details coming out that is being used too make you ‘shady’. I was wondering off you clear up claims of you requesting 10 million from rare beauty and using this situation to your financial gain

    either way girl this case is truly a sticky situation and being honest I don’t see It being easy for you, there team of major lawyers are pretty confident given them holding first access to the trademark and they have stated having amply proof to back up their process. Could you possibly elaborate why you didn’t take the settlement as thats one of the major confusions for us looking outside given ir seems like a pretty decent deal and avoids the possible repercussions with a loss of case

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Kat Wilson

    Hi! I am curious as to why you continued with your name when you were unable to obtain the trademark? When you were denied use of the name was that indicative that another company had been given a trademark? I have not used either brand but appreciate your passion for your company! Are your eye shadows developed in a lab to your specifications or do you choose from available lab samples and make them yours?

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Willamina-eloise

    Girl your lawyers are doing you dirty. This is a loosing battle and the fact you didn’t get your trademarks together from the jump is the biggest nail in the coffin. They literally did everything by the books. Yes you may have produced products first but your failure to file gives their ‘intent to use’ trademark more power. Also intent to use doesn’t require immediate action (hence its name) so no they didn’t “admit to not using the brand name” . Irt actually the opposite – THEY SHOWCASED INTENT TO USE and as long as they can pull up behind the scenes evidence of them doing that (which would be very easy given how large their company is )they are very much correct. Your primary production means nothing without you appropriating handling things legally

    I know it sucks to hear but their are MULTIPLE lawyers that looked at this case and already stated it’s not in your favour. Save yourself what little cash you have left and move on because they will not only have you paying your legal cost but their legal costs and we all know their big name teams are not cheap. This is a losing case and your 10 million value on your company account high was exposed to making barley 35 grant will do nothing but encourage them to be more harsh on you

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Keisha Daniels

    I’m typically for the small business in cases like this but you seriously fumbled the bag to the point you have no case. trade marking isn’t squatters rights – the only race is the race to LEGALLY attain trademark. Instead of running to manufacture products you should of ran to the legal office the secure the name. It doesn’t matter that they took their time after filing their intent to use. The fact is that they ultimately were the only ones who did things within correct legal procedure and they made their progress well within the time period of the ‘intent to use’ expiration date.

    It’s really sad seeing this case because not only are you going to loose but they are going to put you even deeper into your original bankrupt state

    Liked by 1 person

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