Nigerian American Youtube star and budding beauty mogul Jackie Aina is flexing on us yet again with her ESSENCE Magazine‘s June 2019 Digital cover .
On her Instagram she shared her excitement saying:
Trying to maintain composure but also internally screaming from keeping this a secret for so long!!!! thank you @essence for this game changer career moment the June digital cover!! to any girl who’s ever dreamed of the impossible, it’s possible! I’m living proof of it. link to this digital cover story is in my bio
The beauty activist serves up some serious beauty lewks rocking super sparkly out there makeup, from blinged out eyebrows to platinum hair.
We can totally see some of these looks being translated for your summer beauty (albeit a bit toned down). That gold metallic lip, Marilyn Monroe-esque platinum bob and the killer silver mani? Sign. Us. Up.
Inside the issue, Jackie talks to former Vogue writer Marjon Carlos about her journey to digital stardom, why she does what she does and what’s next for the Jackie Aina brand.
Read excerpts below:
On how she started on Youtube
“I wasn’t trying to start a YouTube channel,” Aina explains by phone. “I just liked watching YouTube. But my best friend was like, ‘You should just put your looks online.’ I was just saying, ‘No, not interested.’ And then finally I was like, ‘You know what? Why not? I’m not doing anything bold with my life. I might as well.’”
On the frustrations that led her to Youtube in the first place
“I couldn’t go to makeup counters and get the help that I needed. I would ask them like, ‘Oh, how do I apply concealer?’ Or, ‘How do I contour?’ And it was always like my skin tone was a deterrent to everything,” she recalls. “According to them, it was like, ‘Well, you’re dark. So you can’t really do that.’ It was just like, ‘Okay, I’m sure there’s a way around it. You just have to know what you’re doing.’
On figuring out solutions to the lack of diversity
“What good would my platform be if it was only negativity and blasting people all the time?”
On addressing colorism
“This is a makeup channel. I’m going to have to eventually talk about the fact that my skin is dark,” she says matter-of-factly. “And then eventually I’m also going to tie in those experiences when I’m buying a product, as it relates to wearing makeup.” By making videos like “The Worst Beauty Brands EVER for POC!” Aina used her growing platform to call out brands that simply were not “chocolate-girl-friendly” or were not doing enough to create products that addressed the needs and wants of darker-complexioned consumers.
On assessing brands before working with them
“Are you employing disenfranchised people? Are you employing black people on your social teams? Are you making it holistically from the ground up so your brand represents the very products you’re trying to sell on shelves?’” she probes. “I love when I see a team that’s just got everybody, that there are voices from every community because that tells me that behind the scenes you’re also walking the walk and you’re not just trying to capitalize and cash in on the movement.”
Read more from Jackie Aina on www.essence.com
Art Director: @inrashidasworld
Global Beauty Director: @missjulee
Prop Stylist: @mz.icar