To celebrate Black History Month, Glam Africa Magazine released a powerful campaign
as featured in their latest edition ‘Beyond Beauty’ (the October – December issue)
which focuses on the changes in beauty standards for women of colour. This campaign
delves into recent discussions on colorism, African features and the stories of burn
survivors, as well as those who deal with conditions such as alopecia and vitiligo.
Through the stories of nine women featured in the campaign, it becomes clear that
what beauty means today is so different from what it used to mean in the black
communities. With many Africans growing up in a typical African household where
they are told who to be, what to be and how to go about it, it is an important
discussion to be had, but slowly, change can be seen both in the media and within
these communities thanks to women like those featured in this campaign who have
used their social pages, and influence in the community to encourage change. They
have broken stereotypes, focused on being their true selves while embracing what
others may describe as their 'flaws' and in some cases, had to learn to love
themselves all over again.
‘Beyond Beauty’ saw Glam Africa magazine dig deeper to understand and showcase
what beauty really means, in the various shapes, sizes and forms it comes, as well as
the power of social media in exerting change within the black community today.
The campaign features, these 9 beautiful women:
Hodhen Liaden (Beauty Blogger) who shares her journey on how she came to love
her dark skin after being tormented about her shade when she was younger. To
empower other dark skinned muslim women (whom she describes as ‘a minority
within a minority’, she founded an online inspiration page called ‘Dark Skinned
Eva Khyne Sam, a make up artist and Vitiligo model who was diagnosed with the
skin condition in her early 20’s. Eva was featured on the ‘Portrait Of Britain’ campaign
by the British Journal of Photography which saw her images published at train
stations, bus stops & Billboards across the city.
Lynette Duah, also known as Mela Child is a dark-skinned beauty influencer and
youtuber. She speaks openly about having suffered from lack of confidence and
growing up struggling to love her skin color. Speaking about her struggles has allowed
her to encourage her younger subscribers of 90,000+ followers to love themselves.
Funmilayo Dami Otuniyi, also known as That Girl Dami is a beauty entrepreneur
and social media influencer who shares her story on struggling to fit in to the UK after
migrating from Nigeria. She found comfort in make-up and has since established a
career for herself as a makeup artist and founded her own brand DFA Cosmetics.
Hannah Olateju, quadruple amputee and beauty blogger. Hannah had all four of her
limbs amputated after contracting meningitis and gangrene at 2 years old. She has
become a body positivity advocate and uses fashion and makeup to help boost her
confidence whilst sharing video tutorials online to almost 100,000 followers.
Jacqueline Ilumoka, International Model and Marketeer. As a young girl Jacqueline
suffered from low self-esteem and lack of confidence among her peers due to her
striking African features i.e. square jaw, large lips, wide nose and small eyes. She has
since found her feet through modelling in an industry that appreciated these features
and has since become an advocate for self-love and body confidence using her social
media influence to encourage other African women to appreciate their strong features.
Nikky Odutayo, a pastor and motivational speaker, she discusses her experience of
being diagnosed with Alopecia at 21 which saw her lose her hair and eyebrows. Now
she is also a mental health advocate, inspiring a new generation of young people to
find confidence despite any physical or emotional condition.
Misty Bailey, also known as ‘Misty the Brand’ is an alternative model who started in
the modelling industry trying to look like every other girl, after a short hiatus, she
came back stronger by taking control of her beauty and rebranding herself in a way
she felt more comfortable. Despite coming back with a ‘not so typical /alternative
look’ it surprisingly turned out to be the reason for her success in modelling.
Olamide Fetuga (Also known as PaintedByCocoa) is a make-up artist and burns
survivor. She shares her story on suffering from depression after experiencing second
degree burns on her face due to a hot water accident. She recently launched
'PrettyNScarred' out of frustration as she was tired of being seen for just her
appearance. This project allows Olamide to use her makeup skills to help other burn
survivors regain their confidence because she believes that “No matter what you’re
going through, yoThese nine women of colour with inspirational stories, have all embraced their bodies
and features unapologetically and are empowering others to do the same. Not
only are these incredible women united by their melanin, but they have each
also battled with their individual beauty in some shape or form. And by
learning to love themselves just the way that they are, they have been able to
challenge conventional beauty standards and show the world that beauty
doesn’t have just one face.
Their full stories and features can be read in Glam Africa’s latest edition the Beyond
Beauty Issue available to purchase in stores or online at glamafrica.com/magazine
PHOTOGRAPHY: Amifel Cliff Eribo
VIDEOGRAPHY: Fame TV UKu can be who you want to be”.