Though I can be a hopeless nostalgic when it comes to brown girl beauty, it’s hard to deny that in recent years being brown and beautiful has risen to nearly Kardashian levels of mainstream mania. And as the rest of the world eagerly catches up on how dynamic and downright trend-setting women of color can be, I find this phenomenon ironically does even more to open up brown girls’ views of our own beauty boundaries.
I’ve lost count of the brown girl “sister circles” I’ve partaken in where the robust dialogue’s been sparked by the latest mainstream brown beauty obsession. From electing which VH1 Basketball Wife is the fiercest to seeking a verdict on Rihanna’s red hair revival, my collective of sista-friends and I never fail to fully assess what these pop culture contributions mean for us and what we see in the mirror.
Lately, increased diversity in which brown beauty trailblazers are highest trending on Twitter or most-featured at our local newsstands has helped to fill valleys of division between sistas. Where debate once ensued over “the great complexion conflict” (lighter skin vs. darker tones) brown girls are now boasting a broader spectrum of contemporary beauty tastemakers—showcasing nearly every shade in between. We indulge in the beautiful brown ambiguity of supermodel Chanel Iman and singer Sabi, while reveling in the refreshing mold-breaking boldness of actress Gabourey Sidibe and model Amber Rose.
Like many other infectious beauty movements, this brown girl bonanza is a self-fulfilling prophecy. As the paparazzi increasingly snap shots of countless brown girl beauty icons, legions of women of color confidently prepare for their own close-ups. And with our refreshed standards of brown girl beauty cultivating added sisterhood, right now is shaping up to be a great time to be brown and fabulous!
Driven to infuse each encounter with joy-inducing laughter, Dre Brown seeks to offer those she reaches both something for the eye and for the soul. Based out of New York City, Dre splits her time between makeup artistry, hair styling, strategic marketing, writing and entrepreneurship. Follow her exploits on her blog: a Dre in The Life and her Beautylish series "Confessions of a Nouveau Natural Woman"