On Thursday, RuPaul’s Drag Race season 7 contestant Pearl shared a set of photos to Instagram which many viewers are calling out as blackface.
The photos, which have since been deleted, show Pearl clad in a bright pink top with overly penciled lips, blue eyes, a bleach blonde wig, and a very tan complexion.
She also held a cup of iced coffee in her hand, writing in the caption: “Skipper’s all grown up now.”
The post quickly went vial in the RPDR community with many Drag Race alums speaking out on the situation. In an X post that read, “What about this gives blackface?”
“The fact that her face is darker than the iced coffee,” season 10 contestant The Vixen swiftly replied.
Drag Race UK season 2 star Tayce responded on Reddit saying, “Sooo much to unpack here and I’m so here for it.”
Silky Nutmeg Ganache also has something to say. “RuPaul should’ve just talked to her off-camera because now she’s mocking RuPaul in her younger years,” Silky said in an X post.
Pearl has since posted an apology in her Instagram stories, writing: “The character I posted this morning was not meant to resemble any other background ot her than my own,” she wrote. “She’s platinum blonde/blue eyes & meant to have 2000’s britney-esque tan.”
“I certainly didn’t mean to hurt anyone and will refrain from using any kind of tan at all when creating characters in the future,” she added. “I’ve removed the post as to not continue to offend people.”
Pearl did respond to one queen's reaction to the photos. Aquaria commented on Pearls post saying, “No shade and not meaning to get into things as I know u don’t mean harm but also u were the color of ur coffee and I’ve never seen a fake tan pumped girl with such a cool and natural undertone across the body,”
“I think people know u like to explore that character but I think it’s usually a bit easier for others to understand if it’s a less realistic shade for someone’s natural skin (like something a bit more orange) and I think it’s also fair to assume hopefully u saw that before posting as well. Not trying to dogpile but people have come for me for far lighter and I’d imagined you didn’t mean harm but were also both not blind or idiots.”
Now, EW reports that in now-deleted comments, Pearl replied, telling Aquaria that she was “the last person who needs to weigh in on this” and “I couldn’t hold a candle to the drama u have gotten yourself into so to see u here projecting is really awkward and twisted. U are nobody to comment on my cosplay when u have been cosplaying me ur whole damn career.”
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