Gwyneth Paltrow is the latest celebrity to release budget skincare products she’d probably never buy for herself. Earlier this week, she embarked on a press tour to promote her new, affordable skincare line called good.goop.clean. (Not to be confused with the higher quality Goop Skincare.)
It’s probably a pretty big deal that Goop, once synonymous with rich white women and exclusivity, is being made available to us poor people at Target and on Amazon. However, it was Paltrow’s defense of nepotism that immediately caught the internet’s attention — and sparked backlash.
It was only last year that Shakespeare in love Stern did that stupid statement (in conversation with NB colleague Hailey Bieber) that Nepo babies have to work “twice as hard” as average people without industry contacts. And now she seems to believe that success as an actress is akin to studying medicine.
In an interview with Bustle, Gwyneth was asked what it was like for her 19-year-old daughter of Coldplay’s Chris Martin, Apple, navigating college with a Hollywood family. Paltrow had this to say:
“Now there’s this whole nepo-baby culture and judgment towards children of famous people. She’s actually just a student, and she was very… She just wants to be a kid and be in school and learn. But there’s nothing wrong with doing or wanting to do what your parents do.”
She continued, “No one walks over a child who says, ‘I want to be a doctor like my father and grandfather.’ The truth is that when you grow up in a house with a lot of artists and people who make art and music, you know that, just like when you grow up in a house with laws, the discussions at the table revolve around the nuances of each law that the parents practice. I think it’s kind of an ugly nickname. I just hope that my children always have the freedom to do exactly what they want to do, regardless of what others think or say.”
Any comment about Hollywood nepotism that ignores the reality of privilege is sure to cause a stir on social media. And right to work rolled like clockwork while the world imploded.
I found Paltrow’s pro-nepo-baby argument to be as silly and harmless as any that go viral, including her own. But it reminded me a lot Comments from Lily-Rose Depp on this topic last year. She also compared a famous actor who gives his child an audition to a doctor’s child who completes four years of medical school. (I’m starting to think the Nepo-Girlies came up with these bullshit refutations together.) Still, it goes without saying that booking a role in a Hollywood or Broadway production is far more arbitrary than getting a certification that one A certain qualification requires a lot of knowledge and skills – and therefore many hours of work.
However, as far as Paltrow’s comments go, I don’t think Nepo babies are being stalked on the internet just for doing what their parents do. It’s the fact that they have easy access to jobs – some of which they’re not even qualified for – while everyone else struggles to get their foot in the door that continues to test people.
I also don’t think Nepo Babies, unless they’re behaving egregiously, are constantly subjected to hate – at least no more so than the average public figure, who is by nature a victim of online cruelty. However, celebrities are far too sure about what they think the Nepo baby “talk” on the Internet actually entails. For some people, it’s just fascinating to discover that their favorite actor or singer is related to another famous person, and that’s the end of it. Others are probably more critical of the privileges of these emerging artists. But when has acknowledging the truth ever stopped a rich person from pursuing what he wants? But for some reason journalists are afraid to investigate these facts!
“Overall, Paltrow is too rich to care.”
All in all, Paltrow is too rich to care about any of this, especially for a celebrity whose entire personality is like she lives in her own privileged bubble and has no idea what us common folk are up to. She’s also the rare Nepo baby whose career no one seems to object to (at least in 2023) because she’s undeniably talented. Just enjoy your nepotism in silence!