Fenty Beauty changes face of cosmetics

Singer+Rihanna+attends+the+launch+of+her+beauty+brand+%22Fenty+Beauty+by+Rihanna%22+at+Duggal+Greenhouse+on+Thursday%2C+Sept.+7%2C+2017%2C+in+Brooklyn%2C+NY.+
Singer Rihanna attends the launch of her beauty brand

Singer Rihanna attends the launch of her beauty brand "Fenty Beauty by Rihanna" at Duggal Greenhouse on Thursday, Sept. 7, 2017, in Brooklyn, NY.

Brent N. Clarke/Invision/AP

Brent N. Clarke/Invision/AP

Singer Rihanna attends the launch of her beauty brand "Fenty Beauty by Rihanna" at Duggal Greenhouse on Thursday, Sept. 7, 2017, in Brooklyn, NY.

Sahara Harmon, Staff Writer

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Friday Sept. 8, 2017, Robyn ‘Rihanna’ Fenty brought sunshine to the streets of New York in a casual, golden, Oscar de la Renta ball gown to announce the launching of her new beauty line, Fenty Beauty. After two years of painstakingly poring over color palettes, finishes, and formulas, the pop star released her passion project unto the world to great fanfare.
Talks of the bad gal’s beauty line began in April of last year and became a source of anticipation after the announcement of the official launch date. Leading up to the release, a bevy of campaign ads and sneak peeks into the long-awaited collection gave consumers a glimpse into the inner workings of a fashion icon. Divergent from traditional high-end makeup brands, Rihanna made sure diversity was the forefront of Fenty Beauty’s campaign; a notion perfectly illustrated in the minute-long ad that preceded the historic launch.
The ad was praised for setting a new standard of diversity for other companies who have dragged their feet when it came to widening the range of color in the makeup products they offered as well as the models who represented the products.
Segun Geruba Okelarin, beauty insider and writer for the Huffington Post said about a recent experience at a UK makeup launch, “…trying out the product in the comfort of my own home and mirror, it sadly didn’t work on my skintone.”
This is an aspect of the beauty world most people of color have to endure, giving dollars to companies that often don’t make space for them or speak to their needs. Within the first five seconds of Fenty Beauty’s first video campaign, a dark skinned black woman, a hijabed model and a veritable gamut of other women indicative of every color on the spectrum were brought center stage, a feat that has taken years, if ever, for more renowned makeup brands to accomplish.
This disconnect between consumer and creator can be seen in the lack of options given by brands like Estee Lauder and Maybelline. Brands who have existed for over 50 years but only recently added three to four diverse darker skinned colors to a portfolio which features three times as many options for lighter skin-tones.
Fenty Beauty brings to a starving consumer base 40 shades to choose from with over half of them being darker than the classic alabaster range most brands showcase. With Rihanna’s new line of makeup, everyone can feel taken care of, a mission she herself set out to complete.
RiRi herself said in a statement plastered all over Fenty’s website, “Fenty Beauty was created for everyone: for women of all shades, personalities, attitudes, cultures and races. I wanted everyone to feel included, that’s the real reason for this line.”
Youtubers and bloggers alike took to the net within hours to rave about the line, rejoicing about the inclusivity and expelling stories of acceptance in an industry that has been the source of insecurity and doubt for many people, especially women of color. No more are the days of mixing foundations to get the right shade or being completely left out of the color range altogether.
Nyma Tang, youtuber and dark-skinned makeup guru stated, “I saw other dark-skinned girls in Sephora getting matched in this foundation, and it literally melted by heart because it was so awesome to see such a huge launch, and there were girls that looked like me that were able to get matched for it. It was amazing.”
What makes Fenty Beauty stand out from the rest of makeup brands produced or created by celebrities, besides the quality and the number of products offered on her first launch, is that Ms. Fenty has made it clear she is here to stay. According to a Bustle article, brands like KKW and Kylie Jenner’s lip kits are created in a smaller amount of under 300,000 units or less and are advertised solely through their personal social media. Rihanna has instead partnered with beauty titan Kendo, an innovative brand incubator. Kendo strategically disseminated information about Fenty Beauty’s campaigns over all media platforms and created enough stock to sell products internationally in over 1,600 stores among seventeen countries and online, according to Harper’s Bazaar. Of course, that didn’t stop them from flying off the shelves.
Within days, the darkest shades of Fenty Beauty’s new Pro Filt’r Soft Matte Longwear Foundation sold out online, in-store and internationally. In an interview with The Cut, Iman, famous international supermodel, wife of David Bowie and founder of her own line of cosmetics, regaled about her journey creating her brand and the amount of times she was told by retailers “black women don’t wear foundation.” The purpose of this line of makeup was not to add to Rihanna’s brand as a celebrity, but to supply her with credibility as a bona-fide creative powerhouse in both the fashion and makeup world.
Fenty Beauty has tapped into a relatively large niche of the beauty community who have felt their voices have gone unheard and their faces unseen. She has unequivocally addressed this concern by using her platform as one of the most iconic and productive creatives of our time to raise the standard of how people of color are represented not only in beauty, but as consumers. Her status as a sensational and relentless creator is cemented by the fact that she was one of the first artists to reach 100 million gold and platinum certifications for her work, her face has graced hundreds of magazines from Fader to Vogue and she has collaborated as supervisor and creator with countless fashion and makeup dynamos like Mac, Puma and Dior. Fenty Beauty is cruelty-free and predominantly vegan.

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Fenty Beauty changes face of cosmetics