Highschool Senior from Chicago, IL.
There are many trends in fashion and media that were once just a ¨Black people thing¨ to wear. Mainly Black people, in fashion and media, were the ones to start many trends that soon became popular and even mainstream for other celebrities to use or wear. One issue with this is that Black people wouldn't get the proper recognition for starting these trends. Once it became mainstream, it would seem like something that was made popular by nonblack celebrities. Although before these trends became mainstream, they were called ¨ghetto¨ and ¨ratchet¨ because they were worn by only Black people. When in fact these things would only be ¨ghetto¨ until other cultures are okay with taking it. So I'll list 3 trends that became very popular due to Black culture and people.
In today's society, acrylics are now seen as a part of the ¨Instagram baddie¨ troupe or a form of art that includes getting your nails done in the most over the top way, both things being a part of our consumable media. Anyone can get acrylics, or even do them on their own at home, and although Black women aren't the creators, they did push this trend to become a cultural wave. From that, many people have taken acrylic nails turned them into an art form and a culture dedicated to all the girls and guys who love to get their nails done. But then you may ask, how did Black women come into play ? Dating all the way back to 1966, Donyale Luna wore them on the cover of Twen Magazine. She was also the first Black woman to be on the cover of Vogue. Soon 70s disco stars , Diana Ross and Donna Summers wore colorful square tipped nails. Following through to the 80s where Florence Griffith Joyner, the fastest woman of all time, had become an iconic symbol of Black excellence and acrylic. In many ways, Black women used their talents and beauty to amplify that nails were beautiful and suppress the notion that acrylics were ¨tacky¨ and ¨unprofessional¨. Now, you can find just about any runway, fashion magazine or salon that uses nails to display beauty in this way.
Hoop earrings are a popular piece of jewelry that is a part of streetwear style and the popular y2k style. As hip hop and pop culture began to get more popular, hoops became a staple for fashionable looks at award shows and events. Even before this time, a black jazz performer named Josephine Baker became known to wear large hoops. As a symbol of beauty for African American women and women of color, hoops became a day to day accessory. In addition to that, Josephine was a civil rights activist so it was popular to see black women with hoops, afros and afrocentric clothing. Furthermore, popular singers such as Diana Ross and Cher would help push hoops to become a part of the soul and disco era. Soon enough other recognizable artists like Erykah Badu, Lauryn Hill and Missy Elliott helped push hoop earrings as a sign of beauty and femininity.
A very popular and well known part of Black culture is how we care about shoes or as some people call it ¨shoe game¨. Sneaker culture emerged in the wake of hip hop and rap culture. The popularity of basketball and Air Jordan´s by Michael Jordan became an elevated signature of quality shoes for many Black youth. Inevitably, Sneaker culture became linked to the streetwear style and seen as a symbol of status. With social media and internet trends in the picture, luxury brands like Alexander Mcqueen and Dior have synchronized to push to larger audiences. Because of Black youth in Urban areas propelled brands like Nike, Converse, Jordans, Adidas, and New Balance to help them become a part of sneaker culture. As they became a part of streetwear culture, it became popular in skateboarding and skaters to wear popular shoes.