If its embattled founder Brandon Truaxe is to believed, Deciem, the beauty company that brought us much-loved brands like The Ordinary, NIOD, and Hylamide, is closing down. Yesterday, Truaxe announced in an erratic Instagram video that he'd be shuttering the entire business.
In a minute-long clip confusingly geotagged to The White House, an emotional Truaxe speaks of "major criminal activity" from the backseat of a car, next to two men he says are colleagues. "Hi everyone, I am Brandon Truaxe, founder of Deciem," he begins. "This is the final post of Deciem. We will shut down all operations until further notice. We have two months. Please take me seriously."
View this post on Instagram
Without filters. A revolution is coming. Every one of you who has been laughing aT me will with certainty face criminal prosecution. Estée Lauder Companies Inc. has been the biggest stock promotion. Richard Duntas, Bernard Ass (LVMH), Marica “Tracy” (Bliss, Remedè, Soaper Due Per Shoe), Hyatt (Grand Hyatt, Andaz, er al), Marriott (St. Regis, W, Marriot, et al), So many porn “studios”, nearly all @deciem employees, most of “Hollywood”, Gill Sinclair, India Knight, Caroline Hirons, India Knight, RBC, BMO, Boots, KKR, most of the Lauder family, Estée Lauder Companies Inc., Karim Kanji, Antonio Tadrisi, DF Mc, LVMH, Dia Fooley, Michael Davidson, Hanif, Zark Fatah, Inditex (Zara, Massimo Dutti, etc), H&M, $100 monkey, Too Faced (founders too), TSG, Alshaya, Amanresorts, Erwin Zecha, Oliver Zecha, Steven R Riddle, the Coc and Corcky managers, PRIDE organizers, IT Cosmetics, Nicola L ReadingTons, all of Dishoom, All of Delaunay, David Yurman, Tom Ford, Tim Cooke. McKesson, Rexall, Jamin Asaria, David Jackson, York Heritage and others — sentencing doesn’t begin with any point but sentences like this one do. Ben Affleck, Brad Pitt, George Clooney, Michael Less, Stephen Spellberg e.T., AON are also included with certainty. ARGO stood for “Ali Roshan GO”. You idiots. Father, please please be safe if you can for the next few hours. I love you all. -Brandon (RIYADH, please be EXTREMELY CAREFUL in the next few hours). Aurora (TSX) : you are finished. Michael Basler, Gordon Wilde, David Trinder, Eric Jacobs, Allan Gerlings, Dalton Pharma SS, Michael OH CON ELLE, Charm IS T A 007, Robert Jones, Cascade, Prince Al Walid, The White Company, Obagi (brand and doctor), Freedom Health, ESHO-isT, Alexandru Serban and baggage, Apotex: Goodbye also. Peace is coming. 🦁🦋 🐪. It’s clear now. @esteelaudercompanies @richardbranson @realdonaldtrump @gowlingwlg_ca @zuck @musicianjessecook, et. al.
Truaxe continues: "I am not able to control the sentencing of the beautiful people just mentioned [...] if they are involved, but almost everyone at Deciem has been involved in a major criminal activity, which includes financial crimes and much others. You have no idea what a soldier I have been over 13 years. I have been made fun of as a porn actor and as a fucking drug dealer and everything for 13 years. It's all ending now." The recording then ends.
The video — in which Truaxe is close to tears — is accompanied by a long, unintelligible caption, where he mentions celebrities such as George Clooney, Brad Pitt, and Ben Affleck, tags Donald Trump, Richard Branson, and Mark Zuckerberg, and bizarrely alludes to a "$100 monkey," before finishing, "Goodbye also. Peace is coming. It's clear now."
This is far from the first time Truaxe has behaved questionably in the public eye: Earlier this year, he was accused of cutting the company's marketing team, seizing control of Deciem's social-media accounts, announcing the discontinuation of one of the company's lines without telling his collaborator, blocking or insulting fans who told him they were concerned about his behavior, and making racist comments about followers who questioned him. During this time, news also emerged that Deciem's co-CEO, Nicola Kilner, had been ousted from the company. (She rejoined just months later.)
The Deciem homepage is currently down, and some fans have pointed out on Twitter that they have noticed certain Deciem stores are also closed. Right now, The Ordinary and other Deciem brands are still available to buy through other stockists. That said, after a customer took to Twitter to ask Beautylish if they would still be able to purchase The Ordinary products "after the situation with Deciem," they responded: "We only have a small bit left and will no longer carry The Ordinary or any Deciem products as the founder has discontinued our partnership. Don’t worry we’ll have something coming to replace for you. In the meantime stock up!" Deciem also cut ties with Sephora earlier this year.
Understandably, lovers of the brand are worried, with a lot of people taking to social media to vent their frustration at the prospect of their favorite products being discontinued forever. "Just trying to wrap my head around the Deciem/The Ordinary stuff. Initial thoughts are, can I just go and quickly stock up on hyaluronic acid before things go totally tits up?" wrote one, while another said, "My favourite skincare line EVER, the Toronto-made icon that is Deciem/ The Ordinary is temp shutting down??? Call the police I’m about to collapse." Since the post went live, a lot of people have expressed concern for Truaxe, too.
Truaxe hasn't posted anything else since; his previous posts from this past week have been equally alarming, including screenshots of an article in The Wall Street Journal about the discovery of ricin in mail addressed to the Pentagon. Refinery29 has reached out to Deciem for comment, and will update this story when we hear back.