You may know Gwyneth Paltrow from her successful career as an actress. Or maybe, you know her from the spotlight being shined on some of her famous relationships, like when she was engaged to Brad Pitt. But if you follow Paltrow’s Instagram, you’ll also know the actress by her brand “Goop.”
Paltrow has been promoting Goop, a lifestyle brand, and a lot of fans are mocking it for being dangerous and irresponsible. With the launch of her Netflix documentary The Goop Lab, we can expect to get even more of Paltrow’s pseudoscientific health advice.
As Paltrow’s fame rose, she gained a reputation for unusual health practices. When she attended the Anchorman premiere, she was covered from cupping marks, a remedy designed to suck toxic energy from the body. The marks definitely drew attention.
In 2008, Paltrow followed up her cupping attention with the launch of Goop. At the time, it was a nutritional newsletter she used to promote her personal ideas on health and wellness. Which might not be the best thing to do when you’re gaining a reputation for psuedoscience.
The early days of the newsletter were focused mainly on food, as you’d expect from any nutrition newsletter. Goop helped bring followers into successful cookbook launches while catching the attention of a few critics as well.
Critics often slammed the cookbooks promoted by Goop for projecting an unrealistic idea of gaining bodily perfection. The foods on her list of “off-limits” items don’t seem to be anything but personal preference.
Another point of criticism was Paltrow’s elitism since items like $100 salads were considered a treat and the recipes she promoted used expensive tools and ingredients. Not everyone has movie star money.
Paltrow really started to hit the e-commerce wold hard in 2014. Goop had expanded to include Goop-branded houseware, clothing, and vitamins. From there, the brand opened storefronts and pop-up shops, putting Paltrow’s expensive merchandise on display.
As the brand’s reach has expanded, so has the criticism, much of it over the goofy, unrealistic nature of her products. Things like a $66 jade egg to be stored in the vagina as a way to increase female energy probably have something to do with it.
Where Paltrow believes she’s using her product to change the world, many others believe promoting pseudoscience is dangerous to communities since it pulls people away from medicine and towards “magical” cures.
Paltrow recently posted a photo to Instagram that caused some controversy with the COVID-19 outbreak happening across the world. The photo in question was of her wearing a face mask while traveling.
With the recent shortage in medical equipment, some fans think Paltrow’s photo may have given people the idea that they should be wearing masks as a safety measure. Possibly contributing to the shortage.
To be fair, she did promote handwashing as well, but promoting misinformation (which her photo may have done) is dangerous during a health crisis. And, promoting pseudoscience can be dangerous as well, since it promotes the use of untested ideas for health.