achievements, black women, Fashion, feminism, movies, theater, women

Trends: Are Black women back from the dead?

I’m not big into rap or hip-hop, so the last few years seemed like an entertainment and inspiration desert when it comes to seeing empowered black women just being excellent and special without screaming curse-words or whatever. That annoys me.

It alsofelt like there was a lot of negativity surrounding those of us with darker skin, and I was starting to think that people just couldn’t give up on the idea that being dare with full lips and natural hair was an actual state of being that didn’t require apology.

Then the waters started parting…5 serenaSerena Williams was a badass April cover girl and that just seemed to inspire her and she went on to win a bunch of tournaments. You know, like Wimbledon and whatnot. After she was rested up from that she was just everywhere, including the Harper’s Bazaar Women Who Dare  issue and the upcoming Pirelli calendar.

I really should have taken tennis more seriously in high school…

1 nina simoneIn June one of the most revolutionary black entertainers in the world was honored with a documentary. What Happened Miss Simone? came out and her name was on everyone’s lips again. Sad, because after a revival in the 90s her incredible voice had sunk into obscurity.

2 grace at afropunkI thought that I would have to content myself with that, but then Grace Jones played Afro Punk! I found out too late to get tickets, but whatever. She was there!!! he inspiration of so many crazy-dressing black girls was actually up to her usual tricks, being her amazing and provoking self and it was awesome to have my twitter taken over by …GRACE.

And then she put out a book, I’ll Never Write My Memoirs, and then freed the nipple at a New York book signing.

I mean, could anything else happen?
4 fashion month Just Fashion month, no biggie. While some people were moaning and whining over 20% non-white models on the runways, I was too busy cheering. I mean- Herieth Paul, Tami Williams, Grace Bol and that gorgeous big afro girl who starred in the under-reported Stella McCartney One City One Girl series. Nana Ghana wore Stella McCartney in her own individualistic way and for all those people saying there’s no diversity, I just really didn’t see a lot of people covering this.  3 ajak deng at phillipe plein One of my fave instagram models, Ajak Deng killed it to death in the Phillipe Plein show. Which brought everything back to punk, Grace and all that’s good in the world. 6 viola At this point the world was just bursting with black lady goodness but then? Viola Davis won the Emmy for leading actress in a drama. As Analiese Keating, a high-powered lawyer and law professor, Davis shows such a kaleidoscope of feeling that her just raising her eyes to stare into the camera can blow you away. The character calls for a real, raw earthy (yet touchingly elegant) performance and Viola Davis has brought it with every episode.

Then she gave this speech and everybody was like- yeah! And then she also won wearing her hair in it’s naturally textured state and her dress was gorgeous, so it was like amazing black lady heaven. 7 lupita

And then,my October Vogue came and Lupita Nyong’o was on the cover looking crazy gorgeous and at that moment you could be like, ok this was a good year to be a black woman- but then the Mert Alas & Marcus Piggot photos were just… there were so many!!!! I mean a LOT! It wasn’t just fashion, it was grace, beauty, mystery, and romance.

Then she turned out to be starring in a play written by other gorgeous black lady Danai Gurira for Walking Dead at the Public Theater. Can you be any more proactive about bringing diversity to the stage? AND THEN it’s just been announced that the play, Eclipsed, is moving to Broadway.

If anything else happens, I’m just gonna faint.

xoxo, Faith/Sassy Ethnic Bohemian

beauty, black women, confidence, Fashion, makeup, self-affirmation, shaming, women

Shame Series (part 1)- is there such a thing as too black to wear makeup?

One day, not yesterday or anything – it was awhile ago, somebody told me that I was ‘too black to wear makeup’. She said there was no point because no one could see it on my skin. Being a patient person, I didn’t bother reacting the way that they may have hoped. I wanted to turn that phrase around in my brain for awhile.

Too Black To Wear Makeup. 

I kept talking at the time, carefully watching the person’s face. They seemed so angry that I would dare to do this makeup thing! The woman’s head was literally shaking. I looked her over, looking at her makeup- which was the type of makeup worn to enhance rather than blind. I thought carefully about whether or not her words hurt me. Finding that they didn’t, I put those words away for later, when they would be useful and advantageous to me.

Like, oh, say- today.

Black women wearing makeup:

Now these people are of varying shades of dark, but let’s agree that they are visibly of the shade that would make people identify them as ‘black’. or ‘negro’ or what have you. THEY ARE ALL WEARING MAKEUP. The makeup is visible upon their faces, I can see it and it is there.

Therefore? There is no such thing as being too black to wear makeup.

Black women selling makeup:lupita ad

This woman is not only ‘black’ (or ‘negro’ or whatever) she is African- which is basically like the ultimate black of blackness. She is not only WEARING makeup, but she has been paid a fair sum of money to WEAR the makeup and as we have seen in previous photos, the makeup is visible upon her skin and looks rather nice!

Ain’t that something?

I mean- there it is, right? But I guess that’s not enough. I’m kind of into proving things beyond a shadow of a doubt, so let’s look at some more photos.

Sassy with no makeup:tbtwmu4

This is how I look without makeup. This is an actual progression of photos over the past year. There is NO makeup- but my skin is amazing, wouldn’t you agree? I like it. I’ve also improved over the last year, lol!

But again- I am NOT wearing makeup. And I think that we can all agree that I am ‘black’. If anyone doesn’t agree, you may need some glasses.

Sassy in no makeup makeup:tbtwmu1

Now sometimes I am guilty of wearing subtle ‘no makeup makeup’ meant to make me look a little more bright-eyed and bushy tailed than when I rolled out of bed. However? It’s still makeup, and I am ‘black’ and I am WEARING it. My lashes look insane! #love

tbtwmu2

Now, in this set the makeup is getting a little more intense, and when you get to the last shot I think we can all agree that there is a makeup ‘lewk’ happening. There’s some gold on the eyelids and some berry on the lips. There is blush and I know I left a sinkful of products in the bathroom when I ran out of the house wearing this MAKEUP on my ‘black’ skin.

Sassy and red lipstick are besties:tbtwmu3

because I have this amazing dark skin (which causes me to be identified as ‘black’ or ‘negro’ and so on) I can wear some boldness on my face. My favorite socially acceptable bold statement is red lipstick. It just instantly says- Hey world! I am Black and WEARING MAKEUP!

Ok, that’s not why I wear it- I wear it because it’s pretty and I like the way my lips look in it. Because most women that wear makeup are usually wearing whatever they have on for that particular reason. It pleases me, and makes me feel attractive. It kinda doesn’t matter very much what someone else wants to project onto me. As long as my lipstick is not on my teeth? It’s all good.

Basically?

Sassy is just doing her thing: 

tbtwmu5

It is not up to anyone else to define me as too anything to do anything. That is my judgement call. People have called me a lot of nasty things over the course of my life, and I felt it more when I hadn’t proved to myself what I am. I’m beautiful. I’m unique. I’m amazing. There is no one like me on the whole planet. No one can take my place or subjugate me or degrade me or anything. I am me and I am perfect.

Gosh darn it- I LIKE me!

So although some may not like my dark color, I am good with it and I will wear makeup when I feel like it.

That is all.

Next up: Summer beauty from sunup to sundown

xoxo, Faith/Sassy Ethnic Bohemian