Tarte Cosmetics launched a limited-edition eye and cheek palette earlier this summer titled “Swamp Queen.” I don’t know about you, but the name doesn’t exactly promise beauty sovereignty.
While the name itself isn’t overly ridiculous, I feel the need to speak out for my people — Southerners from the Deep South, that is. Having spent much of my formative years in southern Mississippi and Louisiana, where we eat things that do come from the mud, alligators cross the road and the stink of Bourbon Street is like a welcome home, we take our connections to the bayou seriously. While many of us may very well feel like a queen of the swamp — especially after a few hurricanes or hand grenades — the name of this makeup palette has left me with a little dry mouth.
After a bit of research, it turns out that “Swamp Queen” is the pseudonym of YouTube personality Bunny Meyer, who is also known as grav3yardgirl. She’s from Pearland, Texas, which is a suburb of Houston. I don’t know about you folks, but Pearland is no more the swamp than Washington, D.C. And, while her “swamp family” is growing faster than you can say Tchoutacabouffa River, her connection to the swamplands only goes as far as the History Channel.
“Grabbin’ gators with one hand and gulping sweet tea with the other,” is her tagline. The gator, in her case, is stuffed I believe. Tea — at least she knows how it should be drunk.
Inside, the names of the individual blushes and shadows are only slightly less counterfeit. Is “Gator Wings” her homage to the University of Florida for a winning season? Is “Sippy Sippy” baby talk for the Magnolia State (that’s Mississippi, friends). Oh wait, there is a “Big Baby” eyeshadow shade …
I assume most, if not all, are some reference to her YouTube video segments or slang she uses. I will say that the palette itself features some very lovely colors, and I would expect nothing less from Tarte. However, if Ms. grav3yardgirl wanted to truly represent the swamp, she fell short of some of its signature colors: purple, gold and black.