Tarte Cosmetics is again embroiled in controversy after Bria Jones, a Black content creator, shared her experience of being invited on a brand trip to the Miami F1 Grand Prix last weekend.

“I will be damned as a Black creator if I accept anything other than equal treatment on these trips,” she said in a since-deleted TikTok video.

Jones said she decided not to participate in the brand trip after discovering her schedule differed from other influencers, Insider reported. She was due to leave for Miami on Thursday before the Grand Prix’s practice and qualifying sessions and return a day before the race on Saturday.

“I would love to go on a Tarte trip, and trust me, I’m so grateful,” Jones said. “But I have more integrity than to get all the way to Miami and realize that I’m being treated like a second-tier person or like I’m being ranked.”

Jones was told the lack of an invitation was a typo but decided to skip the event. She also wished brands would be more transparent regarding planned brand trips. Jones has since retracted her initial comments, saying there was “miscommunication on both ends” about the trip. 

Maureen Kelly, the CEO of Tarte Cosmetics, addressed the situation in a since-deleted Get Ready with Me video posted on TikTok.

“Woke up pretty sad this morning,” she said after hearing about Jones’ video.

“I wasn’t thinking what’s going on in the track; I was just thinking how can we get the most people to have this fabulous experience?” she continued while curling her hair and applying Tarte makeup.

“I couldn’t imagine making someone feel sad or, you know, hurting someone’s feelings,” Kelly said, adding there was no ranking of influencers during brand events.

Kelly deleted the video and issued a more formal apology after she received backlash for not addressing the situation appropriately.

“My choosing a lighthearted approach to a topic that deserved a serious response was definitely a wrong approach,” Kelly said in a recent video. “I should have used this as an opportunity to address the unequal treatment of Black creators within beauty creator programs. My post came off as me not taking the issue seriously and I’m really sorry for that.”

She addressed that the brand has “fallen short in matters of diversity, inclusion and equity in the past.” Kelly said the company is reviewing the brand’s creator program and pledged to take immediate action against inequality.

Late last week, Tarte Cosmetics posted a job on LinkedIn for a director of diversity, equity & inclusion position. Kelly said the company is establishing a creator advisory group to provide the brand with feedback and will update its guidelines to ensure that creators are treated equally regardless of background.

“The goal of these initiatives is not to make a problem go away, but rather to start conversations that can lead to a better solution,” she told NBC News. “I want to express my gratitude to those who shared their feedback and comments online. I want to assure you that I took it to heart. Your input has helped me grasp the more significant problem, and work with my team to make sure we rectify the situation immediately to start the process of regaining your confidence in Tarte.”

Under Kelly’s apology video, TikTok users pointed out it isn’t the first time the brand apologized for lack of diversity and equity.

“Tarte made promises in writing like this YEARS ago… and nothing changed. Why is this any different?” a user commented.

“Just now STARTING to be a more diverse and inclusive brand after YEARS of being called out on it is ridiculous and disappointing,” another said.

In 2018, Tarte received backlash for failing to include a wide range of shades for one of its products, the Tarte Tape Shape Foundation. Beauty influencers Alissa Ashley and Jackie Aina reviewed the product and called out the brand for not being inclusive in a YouTube video.

The controversy isn’t specific to Tarte. In the past, several brands have been accused of treating Black content creators differently on press trips. In 2019, Kianna Naomi and Lisette went viral for sharing their experience on influencer trips.