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Black girl magic on your newsstands

BLACK EXCELLENCE: Lupita Nyong'o and Beyonce (Photo credit: Porter magazine / American Vogue)

DIVERSITY IN fashion has always been an ongoing issue. Whether it’s representation on the catwalk or in the editorials, the lack of inclusion within the high fashion industry and subsequent products has been a cause of contention and continuous debate.

In research from The Guardian’s data team, of 214 covers published by the 19 bestselling glossies last year, only 20 featured a person of colour – that’s only 9.3% and shines a greater light on the state of diversity in magazines

Many fashion lovers – including myself – have always desired to see a day where stars of different shades graced various magazine covers and that day ladies and gentleman might be now.

Call it the Edward Enninful effect – the British Vogue Editor-In-Chief has been keen to highlight diversity and push a new era of Vogue and arguably fashion publishing all together – and it seems other publications have followed suit.

From Rihanna for British Vogue, Beyonce for American Vogue, Slick Woods for Elle UK to Zendaya for Marie Claire US, Lupita Nyong’o for Porter Magazine to Tracee Ellis Ross for Elle Canada, Tiffany Haddish for Glamour Magazine and Issa Rae for Ebony Magazine – black women are finally being represented on our newsstands and long may it reign.

Beyond the glorious cover shoots and show stopping images, the interviews from these powerful ladies are even more noteworthy.

STAR POWER: Zendaya and Rihanna (Photo credit: Marie Claire / British Vogue)

In Zendaya’s Marie Claire cover story, the Greatest Showman actress speaks on the pressures of Hollywood and not having the space to make mistakes as a black girl and public figure.

“The one thing I struggle with is I sometimes get so afraid to make a mistake. Like, I want to be perfect, I want to make all the right decisions, and when I don’t, it stresses me out. But I can’t allow myself to be scared of not always doing the right thing.”

Meanwhile, both Beyoncé and Rihanna spoke about embracing their curvier figures and highlighting the importance of body positivity.

The Crazy In Love singer said: “I think it’s important for women and men to see and appreciate the beauty in their natural bodies. That’s why I stripped away the wigs and hair extensions and used little makeup for this shoot.

“To this day my arms, shoulders, breasts, and thighs are fuller. I have a little mommy pouch, and I’m in no rush to get rid of it. I think it’s real. Whenever I’m ready to get a six-pack, I will go into beast zone and work my ass off until I have it. But right now, my little FUPA and I feel like we are meant to be.”

For Porter Magazine, Nyong’o reflects on driving change in Hollywood and redressing beauty standards. Speaking on the importance of natural hair representation, the Black Panther star said: “My hair is something that, historically, has been shunned I mean, how often do you hear, ‘You can’t get a job with hair like that’?” I ask if that’s still true. “Oh, yes,” she says. “Natural, African, kinky hair – it’s often been painted as uncivilized or wild.”

BLACK GIRLS ROCK: Slick Woods and Tracee Elis Ross (Photo credit: Elle UK / Elle Canada)

“Being featured on the cover of a magazine fulfils me, as it is an opportunity to show other dark, kinky-haired people, and particularly our children, that they are beautiful just the way they are.”

Check out some of the social media reactions below, celebrating the black excellence taking over this month’s magazine covers:

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