The Magnificence of Blackness, a documentary at this time streaming solely on HBO Max, chronicles the increase — and revival — of just one of the American natural beauty industry’s most historic brand names: Vogue Honest Cosmetics.
First introduced in 1973 by Eunice Johnson, publishing govt and spouse of Johnson Publishing Firm CEO John H. Johnson, Vogue Good Cosmetics was the initially national make-up line formulated and made precisely for Black girls, an inclusive mission that is additional recognizable in today’s current market, but whose broad and loaded shade array was extremely hard to find at the time.
Far more from The Hollywood Reporter
Cheryl Mayberry McKissack and Desiree Rogers, both former executives at the Chicago-dependent Johnson Publishing (which owned Ebony and Jet publications, together with Style Honest), purchased the organization out of personal bankruptcy in November 2019 for $1.85 million, and now, as co-entrepreneurs (and president and CEO, respectively) have ushered it into its subsequent chapter.
Courtesy of Heather Houston
The collection, which is now vegan and cruelty-no cost, incorporates foundation, powder, priming serum, and 11 former bestselling lipstick shades with the addition of new nudes. It is offered completely at Sephora and the brand’s revamped web-site.
“I assume it has an prospect to charm to equally ladies who are loyalists and girls who are new, who potentially haven’t skilled the brand name still,” Mayberry McKissack tells The Hollywood Reporter.
Like a lot of trailblazing initiatives, significantly in the attractiveness market, Vogue Truthful was born out of necessity. When Johnson could not uncover products that correctly matched the complexions of Black styles collaborating in Ebony Style Truthful (the once-a-year, traveling manner function she established that doubled as a charity fundraiser), the cosmetics line was born. It supplied a daring vary of tangerine and plum-hued lipsticks and eyeshadows for women of shade (who had been frequently promoted far more neutral earth-tones) and ultimately became the initially global cosmetics model for girls of coloration readily available in superior-stop section outlets like Neiman Marcus.
“She started off this corporation to seriously deliver a resolution for a difficulty. The typical market organizations who have been providing cosmetics have been not generating shades for women of all ages of coloration,” suggests Mayberry McKissack.
The documentary — directed by Tiffany Johnson (Black Monday, Dear White Men and women and Twenties) and Kiana Moore (vp of material output and head of Vox Media’s Epic Digital) — tells this story as a result of a chorus of voices, which include previous Style Good styles like Pat Cleveland, singer Kelly Rowland, designer Sergio Hudson, and celeb makeup artist Sam Great.
Courtesy of Manner Truthful
“Fashion Fair Cosmetics presented some of the most vital cultural times for persons of shade,” states Wonderful, who more than his 30-calendar year profession has worked with quite a few notable actresses (Queen Latifah, Halle Berry, Beyoncé Knowles, Kerry Washington, Jennifer Hudson) and supermodels (Tyra Banking institutions, Veronica Webb, Iman, Naomi Campbell). “With very little to no illustration in cosmetics, Eunice Johnson single handedly produced heritage and developed a protected haven for gals of shade in cosmetics — for each consumers and personnel alike. I was thrilled to participate in the documentary and communicate on the historic increase, slide and relaunch of this iconic manufacturer. Obtaining develop into the 1st Artistic Make-up Director and launching the to start with co-branded assortment for the model has been a highpoint in my profession a homecoming of sorts.”
Filmed above the system of 2020, the film was made by Sephora in partnership with Vox Media’s Epic Electronic, Vox Artistic, and Ventureland, and streaming rights have been ultimately obtained by HBO Max.
“One of the factors you see in it is that it tells the background and results in that bridge to be able to tell the tale of what has been, but is also similarly significant to explain to the tale of what is and what can be. And so you have received like a few distinctive divisions: what transpired, what is occurring, and then you have individuals projecting what this signifies for the long run,” states Mayberry McKissack.
Adds Rogers: “No one is heading to — just for the reason that of nostalgia — buy one thing. So how do you excite individuals nowadays about a brand name that has the background but is in a crowded sector? We labored with a Black dermatologist [Dr. Caroline Robinson] who is aware of pores and skin, and we also labored with Sam Fine who definitely [knows color], in phrases of being equipped to tweak those undertones, generating specific that we have a neutral and a awesome undertone.”
These days, adhering to several cross-generation target group meetings, Rogers and McKissack have a potent sense of what the modern day client is seeking for: fantastic coloration matches, organic components, goods that conduct double responsibility — like moisturizing lipsticks with fantastic shade payoff.
“It actually is the initial cosmetics business that was designed in honor of Black woman’s glamour, natural beauty and vogue,” says Rogers. “Black females sit at the cornerstone of this astounding brand and we really don’t have lots of of individuals that have been close to 50 as well as several years.”