The Beatdown

Here’s Why MAC Cosmetics’ Makeup Launches For Aaliyah And Selena Are So Important For Women Of Color

As an Afro-Latina, it’s never been easy for me to find intersections of Black and Latin American communities in the United States mainstream media. These days I have women like Princess Nokia and Amara La Negra to represent me. But, as a young Black Latina with friends who got to look up to and dress up like the Britney Spears and Jessica Simpsons of the world, I craved and cherished the moments in which I too had a chance to claim that a pop star looked just like me.

Ultimately, I was able to find representation, not quite an intersection, in two women of color who did not pass and also embraced their color and roots: Tejano Queen Selena and R&B songstress Aaliyah. The two musicians were women of color, with backgrounds and cultures similar to mine who ruled the music industry at the height of their games and made people listen. It’s why, when MAC Cosmetics revealed two years ago that they would be honoring the legacy of Selena through makeup I was elated and snatched up the Como La Flor lipstick dedicated to her like it was the dawn of the Apocalypse.

This year, especially after watching MAC’s preview of the line,  I’ll be camping out at my computer ready to buy Aaliyah’s upcoming makeup line like it’s Black Friday.

MAC’s answer to a call for a makeup line that honored the legacy of another woman of color is almost finally here.

#Aaliyah ???? @david_lachapelle

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Aaliyah fans have begged the beauty brand to launch a collection in honor of the late R&B artist, who notoriously loved and promoted the line, for years. Six years after the death of Selena, the “Rock The Boat” singer died in a plane crash at the age of 22 and like the great Tejano singer, she had a massive fanbase that admired her for her radio hits and influence on both fashion as well as beauty.

Last year after fans kicked off a massive campaign on Change.org, which was supported by Aaliyah’s brother Rashad Haughton, the cosmetics company announced that they would finally release an Aaliyah for MAC collection. I am Oprah-style heeeeerrre fooorrr iiiit!

In a recent interview, Aaliyah’s brother revealed that her family was involved in every aspect of the collection’s creation.

According to Refinery29, MAC Cosmetics implored the help of the singer’s family to design and even name the products. During the interview, Aaliyah’s brother revealed that the family had the idea to name certain shades “Try Again,” “Street Thang,” and “More Than a Woman.” “Other names I chose convey more aspects of my sister’s life and experience,” Houghton said.

While the new line won’t be out for a few more weeks, MAC is teasing the product on Instagram.

The makeup brand teamed up with Aaliyah fans to create a film on the beauty legacy of Aaliyah called “A-Z of Aaliyah.” Seen talking about the legacy of Aaliyah are Latina artists Princess Nokia and Empress Of.

“I remember being in love with her, I’ve always been inspired by that minimalist beauty so different so alternative but still surround the way girl-next-door type,” the Afro-Latina singer Princess Nokia says in the video.

Aaliyah’s limited edition makeup launch will be another big beauty moment for women of color.

For so many of us who have been underrepresented and ignored by the beauty industry for years, it’s exciting to see a major brand invest in the power of another woman of color, a true icon, in this way.

That’s exactly why I’ll be getting my basket ready for checkout come June 20, when it’s released!


Read: The Latina Who Sparked MAC + Selena Got Emotional During Her Radio Interview

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Forever 21 Debuts New Line Of Selena Merch ‘The White Rose’

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Forever 21 Debuts New Line Of Selena Merch ‘The White Rose’

A brand new line of Selena Quintanilla merch has arrived at Forever 21, and we’re all feeling muy excited.

The popular clothing retail store debuted “The White Rose” collection Thursday, with T-shirts, pants, hoodies and accessories celebrating La Reina de Tejano available in its stores and online. Prices range from $3.90 to $78.

On Friday, the late icon’s sister Suzette gave a sneak peak of the collection when she shared a video of herself sporting a hoodie with the “Como La Flor’s” singer’s face on it.

“Trying super hard to look cooollll in this new Forever 21 X SELENA hoodie,” she said.

Suzette, who famously played the drums in the Quintanilla family band Selena y Los Dinos, also attended a F21 meet-and-greet event at a Cerritos, Calif. location, where fans swarmed the shop in their Selena tops excited to take pictures.

“So much love and fun meeting everyone today,” Suzette wrote on Instagram after the event. “Saying thank you just doesn’t seem to really sum up how grateful I felt to receive all this love I felt today.”

But while most people are celebrating the new Selena-inspired gear and accessories, others have expressed disappointment, both in the brand and the Quintanilla family.

As for Forever 21, most of the items in the collection aren’t available in plus-size. According to the Revelist, of the 94 pieces, just six have curvy offerings, including graphic tees, one that’s not available yet, and plus-size jeans that are web-exclusive, and anyone with meat on their hips and legs knows how difficult it is to find a pair that fits, making in-store fittings necessary. Even more, while straight-size items include several crop tops, all the plus-size tops are full-coverage.

Several women of size expressed their disappointment in the collection’s lack of plus-size offerings, and Suzette, who also identifies as plus-size, weighed in.

“Hi, I totally understand but there is a couple shirts that are come in our sizes,” Suzette responded. “I really hope I can have the opportunity again to create a collection with a [lot] more for us plus size girls.”


Neither she nor her family, however, has responded to the second critique of the collaborative collection: That the Quintanilla family decided to work with a fast-fashion brand that is famous for sweatshop-like factories and animal abuse.

On Instagram, owner of the Etsy shop Barbarawarbara, called out the Quintanilla family’s ethics and double standards. The designer, who has created pins, pouches and shirts celebrating the singer, common among Etsy shops, revealed that the Quintanilla family threatened to sue her for inexpensive merch while teaming up with a big brand that has a troubling history, particularly for exploiting workers of color.

The debut comes almost two weeks before the 24th anniversary of the Tejana icon’s death.

Read: The Best Tributes To Selena Devoted Fans Of The Reina Made This Year

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The Best Tributes To Selena Devoted Fans Of The Reina Made This Year

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The Best Tributes To Selena Devoted Fans Of The Reina Made This Year

At the height of her fame, Selena was a Tejano star whose concert attendance shattered records both abroad and at home while also gaining her certain type of love and adoration that can only be attributed to her fans.

Here’s a look at the best tributes to Selena’s legacy.

Country music star Kacey Musgraves paid homage to the late Tejano reina at Rodeo Houston where Selena gave her final performance.

@KaceyMusgraves / Twitter

The six-time Grammy Award winner’s reverent rendition of the beloved Selena song couldn’t have been performed on a more appropriate day. In keeping with Selena’s performance at the Houston Astrodome, which was song 24 years to the day, Musgraves entered the dome on a horse while wearing a white jumpsuit.

Musgraves’ decision to sing in Spanish lends a thread of unity to her audience.

@laflorhes / Twitter

In recent years, Musgraves has proved herself to be a far cry from the traditional image of a country music star. Country music has long been part of a history of anti-gay, racist, and conservative sentiment. The imageries most associated with the genre, ones related to empty bottles of whiskey, pick up trucks and blondes in cowboy beats aren’t ones that many liberals of colors are either eager to hitch their wagons to.

It’s why, when the LGBTQ+ affirming singer sang to a crowd of country music lovers in Spanish so many outside of the country music community felt particularly touched and optimistic.

Fans of Selena have been quick to comment on posts about the country singer’s cover with one fan writing “Kacey musgraves Spanish accent is pretty good and why? because she’s Different she’s that new type of country.”

Others were quick to share how immediate Kacey’s gesture to include Spanish speakers in her lineup affected her fans. “The crowd surrounding me were chatting and I heard comments such as, “Who is this?” and “Is she speaking Spanish?” They were younger non-kids of color so she may have unknowingly introduced Selena to a new crowd!” another Twitter user wrote.

Cardi B Paid Also Tribute to Selena Before Her Record-Breaking Performance at the Houston Rodeo

Cardi B has always repped her Latinx heritage loudly and proudly, including supporting and collaborating with fellow Latinx artists like Bad Bunny and Bruno Mars. She took the Latinx love even further by taking to social media to pay tribute to the Queen of Tejano music herself: Selena Quintanilla.

As we previously reported, Cardi B was chosen to perform at the famous Houston Livestock and Rodeo Show–otherwise known as the biggest rodeo in the world. In line with her heretofore history-making career, Cardi B broke further boundaries by smashing the rodeo’s previous attendance record and playing to a massive audience of 75,580 people.

Before hitting the stage, Cardi took to social media to share with fans how nervous she was to perform in front of such a large audience.

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EVERYTHING BIGGER IN TEXAS !!!!!

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Wearing a very fitting sparkly pink cowgirl outfit, Cardi stood in front of a picture of Selena, also dressed in a western-style outfit, and addressed her 41 millions followers.

“I was so nervous to perform in front of 70,000-plus people, but when I saw this picture,” Cardi said, pointing to the photo of Selena wearing her signature bustier and an off-the-shoulder leather jacket, “…I knew I was gonna be alright.”

According to Cardi, the outfit Selena was wearing in the photo was the style inspiration for her recent “Please Me” music video.

In her “Please Me” music video, Cardi B wears a very similar purple bedazzled Western-style leather jacket and matching bustier along with corn-rowed hair stacked with gold beads, effectively repping both sides of her Afro-Latina heritage.

Cardi continued to stan for Selena by singing along with a recording of “Como La Flor” that was playing in the background, including turning and serenading the picture of Selena on the wall.

Twenty-four years after her death, Traveling Selena made sure the singer’s influence is still being felt across the world.

Today, nearly 30 years after her death, the American singer’s legacy has continued its stretch across the globe, partially in thanks to a devoted Instagram profile called Traveling Selena which features the late singer in Barbie doll form at some of the most recognizable sights around the world.

In the style of a traveling gnome, the Instagram account is taking n the Tejano singer to some of the most recognizable sights in the world. Even more exciting the page’s creator features Selena wearing some of her more memorable outfits. The page’s account describes itself as taking pics in front of some of the most beautiful places! Outfits and pics are all my own.”

So far Selena has gone to the Grand Palace in Bangkok.

During her career, Selena expanded her fan following by touring New York City, Argentina, Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic, and Central America. At the time of her death, despite her broad international fan base which included countries such as Japan and Australia, she had not traveled much outside of the Americas. Now ya girl is getting to do the Bidi Bidi Bom Bom wherever the account goes. Including.

To Phuket.

Where even ancient dragons aren’t as fire as her replicated outfits.

They’ve even taken her to San Fran…

Where Selena’s most basic fan base will adore the Instagrammable pics taken by the bridge and the house from “Full House.”

And to see one of the world’s most iconic figures of all: Selena herself in wax form.

How meta.

And to San Diego

I love that they have Selena being a true millenial taking pciks in front of mural art.

As well as the zoo

And heading off to bless the animals at the zoo with her presence.

Even to her own mural

The best part of these pics is that we now get to add locations to our bucket list.

And Khao San Road

Literall watching Selena head off to all of these places is giving me so much wanderlust.

The Phi Phi Islands

Her trip to Thailand looks like the best ever and now I want to go take a vacay at a tropical get away.

On a Tuk Tuk

This is the best look above all and now I want to hop on a tuk tuk and take a ride!

All of the way to Sunset Station

Nothing more divine than Selena in her Dreaming of You outfit.

Aruba

Selena visiting the Caribbean?! Hope the account takes her back to Puerto Rico.

And Multnoham Falls

Selena literally living our best lives beyond the grave is everything.

And of course Avatar Land!

James Cameron would be so lucky to include the Latina icon in his wonderfully made up land.

BB even got to Palace of Fine Arts

Selena being her most real Barbie self outside of the palace of fine arts is everything .

And to the Cola factory!

And look at her chilling next to her favorite beverage of choice.

Girl got herself to Vegas!

Seeing the diva showing off a totally classic outfit on the strip will give you major going out vibes. Bidi bidi bom bom.

And The Full House house

Selena rocking her fullest self at the Full House house will give you all kinds of nostalgia for forever.

Of course Her favorite place in all of the land!

Selena went to visit her favorite state in the country: Texas for Halloween and got dressed up as the true reina that she is.

And last but not least the gum wall

Wearing one of her iconic outfits, Selena suited up to go to the gum wall.


Read: Netflix Posted Beautiful Throwbacks Of Yalitza Aparicio, Now #YalitzaChallenge Is A Thing

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