Black Stylists Launch the Black Fashion & Beauty Collective

Black Stylists Launch the Black Fashion & Beauty Collective

Black Stylists Launch the Black Fashion & Beauty Collective

Their main objective is to fix the lack of representation in fashion and beauty.

Their main objective is to fix the lack of representation in fashion and beauty.

Text: Michaela Zee

As protests continue worldwide following the deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and other black men and women who were killed due to police brutality, the Black Lives Matter movement has also been addressing other drawbacks in society, including the lack of representation within fashion and beauty companies. 

In order to enact change within these professions, a group of black makeup artists, stylists, and hairstylists just established the Black Fashion & Beauty Collective, a nonprofit organization that sheds light on black creatives in the fashion, beauty, and entertainment industries who are often given less support and/or recognition compared to their white counterparts. 

“It’s almost like creating a black glam union,” stylist Jason Bolden told Business of Fashion about the collective. 

The Black Fashion & Beauty Collective was formed by hairstylist Lacy Redway, celebrity stylist Law Roach, and stylist and designer of Aliette, Jason Rembert. Along with focusing on growth and change in the industry, the collective also wants to correct diversity issues within existing companies. 

On June 11, supermodel Joan Smalls spoke about her experiences in the fashion industry using the hashtag #WeAreNotATrend. 

“I don’t need validation from an industry that casts me as the token black girl while ignoring my whole cultural identity,” Smalls said. “What I do need is recognition of the systemic issues — the issues that arise from top to bottom within the industry, from photographers not wanting to shoot me because there’s no need to shoot a black girl to the magazines, brands, and agencies who continue to work with people of that mindset.” 

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The recent and long standing acts against the black community have been saddening, frustrating and unacceptable. I feel these same emotions when I think about how my industry, the fashion world, is responding. It is time for this industry to do more than post a black square and say they’ll “Do Better!” It’s time for us to see the change starting from the ground up. Give us a seat at the table, include us, give us a chance, because we are worthy, talented and unique. There have been so many times where I’ve had to face issues against my race within this industry because I was their token black girl. The campaigns and editorials I had to share while my counterparts got to achieve that on their own. Or that my hair was an issue or that I made a show or campaign too ethnic, the list goes on and on. This industry that I love has profited from us but has never considered us equal. This. Stops. Now. It’s time for the fashion industry to stand up and show their solidarity. Time for you all to give back to these communities and cultures which you draw so much inspiration from. I do want to thank those that did see me for me and gave me a chance. Those that helped me fight my way to where I am today. Thank you, thank you for doing what you knew to be right versus what others said should be done. You will help us be the leaders of change. In saying all of this, I also pledge to donate 50% of my salary for the remainder of 2020 to Black Lives Matter organizations. I know I can’t just talk about change, I have to be a force for it. I encourage and will continue to encourage brands within this industry to do the same and give back. Let’s all be the change we want and need to see. These battles are long from over but together we’re stronger and together we can accomplish what is needed. #WeAreNotATrend #blacklivesmatter

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According to Bolden, the Black Fashion & Beauty Collective will become a “safe space” filled with connections and insights on these industries for emerging black creatives. 

“It’s us being able to own our blackness and also let people know we’ve had enough and this is what it is going to like going forward,” he said to BOF

To learn more about the Black Fashion & Beauty Collective, go to their official website here.

Credits: Photo: VH1


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