James Charles is under fire for taking part in a triggering viral trend known as the "Mugshot Challenge."

Yesterday, the beauty influencer posted a photo of himself made up to look like he had a black eye and bloody nose — something that led many to say Charles was trying to "glamorize abuse," physical assault, and domestic violence.

"Ya know whats not cute? Doing up your makeup like this & tiggering alot [sic] of people who suffer from ptsd of abuse," as one user wrote, while another person added that the challenge was "extremely triggering for survivors of abusive relationships & those attacked by police."

Following the backlash, Charles deleted the photo and tried to defend himself by writing that "hundreds of other influencers and artists have done something similar."

"I deleted the mugshot trend because it was never my intention to trigger anyone & it's a waste of time trying to have an open discussion with people who hate me regardless," he said. In another since-removed tweet, he also asked why the cover of The Weeknd's new album After Hours — which features the singer with a bloody face — wasn't seen as "glorifying violence or abuse."

Charles then continued to double down on his post in subsequent responses, replying to one user who argued that the trend itself was "triggering to many," by writing, "I do understand that but this dumb trend has nothing to do with domestic abuse. what about action movies? halloween? special effects? simple bloody noses? this is nothing new."


Not only that, but Charles responded to another fan who recounted her own heartbreaking experience with abuse by writing, "hi babe, I'm so sorry that you went through something so awful and traumatic. it's a TikTok trend going around where people post their 'mugshots' and has nothing to do with domestic violence whatsoever."

Despite all this though, Charles has since clarified that his initial response was "not an apology."

If you or someone you know is a victim of domestic violence, contact the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233.

Photo via Getty

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