Estée Lauder ambassador sues Revlon over unauthorised Instagram image

By Sarah Parsons | Published: 6-Aug-2021

Grace Elizabeth, the supermodel and Victoria Secret's angel, claims the make-up brand owner used her face to promote products across social media without permission

Revlon has landed itself in hot water with Estée Lauder spokesmodel Grace Elizabeth, who is suing the rival beauty giant for using her image to sell products without permission.

Based in New York, Grace, real name Grace Elizabeth Harry Cabe, was a Victoria's Secret angel and Vogue cover star before signing an exclusive contract with Estée Lauder in 2018.

According to the lawsuit filed late last month, in April 2020, Revlon published an image of Cabe to its Instagram and Facebook pages to promote products, in particular its Skinlights Prismatic Bronzer.

"Revlon's uses of plaintiff's image, likeness, persona and/or name falsely impact that plaintiff is wearing Revlon make-up," reported the lawsuit.

However, the photograph was reportedly an editorial shot from Vogue Mexico in 2017 taken by photographer Michael Schwartz and does not feature any Revlon products; instead, Cabe is wearing Marc Jacobs' Beauty Dew Drops Coconut Gel Highlighter.

Cabe argues that Revlon did not seek permission to use her likeness and, if it had done, she would have refused the request.

Revlon allegedly attempted to sign Cabe as a model for its 2018 'Live Boldly' campaign for a "very substantial monetary offer", which the 24-year-old declined.

Since the 1960s, Revlon, the lawsuit reads, has developed a procedure of securing the rights of almost 100 models and celebrities to advertise and sell products.

"Revlon ignored its own protocols and used plaintiff's image, despite her rejection of working with Revlon," it stated.

"Beauty companies, such as Revlon, are often defined by their spokesmodels. Revlon is closely associated with the models it uses in its advertisements."

Cabe has requested a trial by jury for monetary damages and to permanently bar the company from ever using her likeness.

Founded in 1932, Revlon's ambassadors span the entire entertainment industry from actresses Halle Berry and Sofia Carson, to singer Megan Thee Stallion, and models Ashley Graham and Adwoa Aboah.

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