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The Beauty of Blackness - Relaunching Fashion Fair with Black Beauty (2021)

I've always found it interesting, but also really weird, to hear from a creative team about their campaign and how they arrived at it, etc. Outside of the panel discussions, lectures, workshops, meetups, and events that we ad people arrange for our stuff, I can't think of anyone who wants to hear it. But we do! And we are so bored of case studies, so this is rather refreshing, to be honest. This team has been given the exciting job to revive an iconic brand. Fashion Fair, the first cosmetics brand created exclusively for Black women, it was created in 1973 by Eunice Johnson, the co-founder of EBONY and JET magazines. The brand has been bought by  Desirée Rogers and Cheryl Mayberry McKissack who aimed big for a well-timed relaunch. As the team searched they found two obvious truths, Google "black beauty" and all you'll find is a horse due to a novel that millions of girls around the world read. Look at Instagram, and you'll see makeup tricks shared by people that seemingly don't even realize where they picked this fashion up from, even when it's obvious that black women did that look first.  

A documentary was created. The film chronicles the checkered past, present, and future of Black Beauty. It calls attention to the historical and still persistent dearth of fashion and beauty products made for and by People of Color.

At the center of the film is Fashion Fair. Following its launch in the 1970s, the brand would go on to revolutionize the beauty industry and become a household name for every Black woman in America. The film unveils Fashion Fair’s rise, fall, and rebirth in 2021, against an equally tumultuous shift in commerce and culture.

We’re introduced to renowned experts, artists, and models who have witnessed firsthand the evolution of the industry. We watch with anticipation as Fashion Fair’s new leadership - Desiree Rogers and Cheryl Mayberry McKissack - plot the brand’s high-stakes relaunch.

The Beauty of Blackness is a front-row look at the massive undertaking that goes into reviving an iconic beauty brand amidst a new cultural context, how the industry has changed, and how much progress we still have to make.

Client :  Sephora
Ad Agency: Digitas, New York
Media agency: Vox Media, New York, Epic Digital, New York

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