Is fashion finally getting its diversity mess together?
Probably not, if the harrowing tales of minorities in the fashion industry have anything to say about it. Yet, while there’s still a long (very long, if we’re being totally candid) way to go for total inclusivity in fashion, we can’t deny that there has been at least some movement in the right direction. The latest ray of light? September brought a wave of hope in the form of glossy magazine covers. For the first time – and during the biggest month in fashion, no less – 50 percent of fashion magazines featured women of color on their covers. Now, this is a style trend we can get behind.
For starters, fashion-world darling Rihanna stunned on the cover of British Vogue, where she singlehandedly brought wire-thin eyebrows back from the depths of fashion days past. Newly-minted editor-in-chief Edward Enninful wrote about why he chose Rihanna to be the face of his first September issue in the boss’s chair.
Then there was cover queen Beyoncé, who slayed all of our flower crown fantasies with her incredible American Vogue cover, which, just for the record, was also the first to be shot by a black photographer, Tyler Mitchell. A behind-the-scenes video of the shoot reveals the depth of Beyoncé’s connection to her roots, and the degree to which she strives to represent them in her work.
Other notable cover stars of the month include Tiffany Haddish on Glamour, Zendaya on Marie Claire, and Letitia Wright on one of W Magazine’s multiple covers. And needless to say, this wave of inclusion, even if not nearly as wide-reaching just yet as it ought to be, is a pretty big deal, considering that representation within the industry is still a massive – if not the most massive – pain point in the business.
Fashion has a ways to go in pushing for equal opportunity and representation, but given that September issues are all about setting the stage for what’s to come in fashion, we can only hope that this is a positive sign of what’s on the horizon.