On Sept.3, R&B superstar Rihanna launched her makeup line, Fenty Beauty, at Sephora stores across the world. The line includes 40 foundation shades, 30 skin sticks, and an endless amount of highlighters, concealers, and lip glosses to match. The makeup line is being hailed by critics for the wide range of foundation shades. Fashion website Harper’s Bazaar talked with the superstar at her makeup launch in Brooklyn on Sept. 7 about what it took to create the makeup line. “I didn’t care how long it took, I was going to make sure that we covered every skin tone,”said Rihanna. “Diversity and inclusivity were important to the brand”.
Diversity has been the main focus of the superstar’s makeup launch. In an advertising campaign for Fenty Beauty, Rihanna used famous fashion models such as Duckie Thot, Halima Aden, Slick Woods, and Indyamarie Jean to promote the products to her consumers. Rihanna has been a long supporter of diversity and this was not the first time she has catered to the beauty community. In December 2013, Rihanna collaborated with makeup line, M.A.C Cosmetics, to release different shades of lipsticks just in time for the winter season.
Fenty Beauty has not been the only makeup line to celebrate diversity. The makeup brand ColourPop has also taken to women of color with their array of lipsticks and eyeshadow palettes, while at the same time, making their makeup more affordable for the everyday consumer. In an interview with fastcompany.com, ColourPop President Laura Nelson explained how ColourPop is able to appeal with their products. “For us, digital marketing is like breathing. It’s a fluid natural part of the rhythm,”says Laura.
Rihanna’s original net-worth is an estimated $230 million, according to Celebrity Net Worth. Given the Fenty Beauty launch, it is expected that she is to surpass that number in a matter of months. With the success of the products, other makeup brands have noticed how it’s been catering to women of color. Makeup brands such as Kylie Cosmetics, Clinique, and Makeup Forever have released foundations and lip-kits with specific shades that they feel can cater to women of color as well. According to an article by Bustle correspondent Kali Borovic, “people have been comparing celebrity makeup product launches a few days after the Fenty Beauty launch.” Rihanna fans have been noticing the product launches with these other makeup brands and are attacking them for doing something that should have been done ever since they started, which is cater to women of color.
New Jersey based-makeup artist Deseree Perrin gave her thoughts on the Fenty Beauty line as well as the advertising campaigns Rihanna used for her products. “When I heard that Rihanna was coming out with a makeup line, I felt proud. All of these different shades of foundation not only cater to just one skin tone. It catered to all women’s skin tones so I think that was a win in her part.” Deseree said. “The marketing strategy that she used was excellent. Catering to everybody and not just one person.”
Marketing has played a big role in Rihanna’s makeup line, not just for the hype surrounding it, but actually using diverse models to appeal to the average woman of color is genius. Hopefully, more makeup brands other than Kylie Cosmetics, Makeup Forever, and Clinique will start to see diversity for what it truly is and create makeup that is accessible for every skin tone. These makeup brands have a long way to go and Fenty Beauty seems to be the catalyst to make diversity happen.