Katy Perry’s ‘blackface’ shoes spark backlash, designs pulled from stores

Katy Perry

Two styles of shoes in Perry's line feature faces on them; the Ora Face Block Heel and the Rue Face Slip-On Loafers.

Perry is the latest in a string of fashion designers who have been attacked for manufacturing apparel, footwear or accessories that many consumers say is reminiscent of "blackface".

Both shoes have also disappeared from the Katy Perry Collections website, which offers a number of other shoe options including sneakers, boots and flats.

People have accused Katy Perry's shoes and handbags line, Katy Perry Collections, of designing two shoes that resemble blackface. Representatives for Katy Perry, Katy Perry Collections, Walmart, and Dillard's did not immediately respond to INSIDER's requests for comment.

As of time of publication, Global News could not find the shoes on Walmart Canada's website.

The shoes that offended some people were part of a Katy Perry Collection which was sold in United States stores such as Dillard's and Walmart. The problem is the black one is troublesome considering the long, racist history of blackface makeup.

Others pointed out that if companies like Perry's hired more people of colour, they could avoid racist imagery from hitting the shelves.

Singer Masika Kalysha broached the topic on social media, calling for Katy to explain herself. The sandal version of the shoe looks similar.

The Italian luxury brand apologized for its "wool balaclava jumper", which pulls up over the nose and includes a cutout for the mouth with oversized red lips. In December, Prada removed a series of accessories that resembled black monkeys with red lips.

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