First-Ever Virtual Festival Includes Two UNSTOPPABLE Weekends of #ESSENCEFEST

WHAT:​           ESSENCE, the leading media, technology, and commerce company serving Black women and communities, today announced new additions to its stellar line-up for the 2020 ESSENCE Festival of Culture: Unstoppable Virtual Experience Presented by Coca-Cola. Taking place June 25-28 and July 2-5 (Thursdays-Sundays) and streaming on, the multi-day experience will extend to a global audience of viewers and feature virtual performances, summits, panels and more including leading musical artists, influencers and experts from around the world.

For the first time in the Festival’s 26-year history, the much-anticipated celebration – which annually draws more than 500,000 attendees and contributes almost $300 million in economic impact over July 4th weekend in New Orleans–will be produced as a fully virtual experience spanning two weekends of programming that entertain, empower, inspire, educate and mobilize. This year, in partnership with Michelle Obama’s national, nonpartisan organization, When We All Vote, ESSENCE will share voter registration and voting resources. The Festival will also include a benefit initiative to raise funds to support the critical needs and sustainability of Black and Brown entrepreneurs, micro and small businesses, and organizations focused on racial equity across the U.S. For an up-to-date artist lineup and schedule, click here.  The 2020 ESSENCE Festival is presented by Coca-Cola.  Major sponsors include Ford, McDonald’s, Walmart, My Black is Beautiful, P&G. For more information and to register, visit  Join the conversation via social @EssenceFest.



WHO:​              NEWLY ANNOUNCED: First Lady Michelle Obama; Kerry Washington; Naomi Campbell; Lena Waithe; Ayesha and Stephen Curry; Rev. Al Sharpton; Marc Morial; Tamika Mallory; Tarana Burke; Jon Batiste; Chronixx; Michaela Coel; Wyclef; Iyanla Vanzant; Sarah Jessica Parker; Iman Shumpert & Teyana Taylor. PLUS: Marco Borges; Jemele Hill; Misa Hylton; Jeanette Jenkins; MC LyteJodie Patterson; Michael Jai White & Gillian White; Ebonie K. Williams; and many more.

Previously announced performers include:

Headliner Bruno Mars plus: Amanda Black, Andra Day, Bell Biv Devoe (“BBD”), Burna Boy, Common, D-Nice, Damian Marley, Diamond Platnumz, Doug E. Fresh, Elephant Man, Estelle, India.Arie, John Legend, Ledisi, NAS, Patti LaBelle, Raphael Saadiq, Rapsody, Sauti Sol, Shaggy, Swizz Beatz, and more, hosted by Loni Love.  Leading a special tribute to the city of New Orleans will be Mayor LaToya Cantrell, PJ Morton, Big Freedia, Irma Thomas, Tank and The Bangas and Big 6 Brass Band.  Also, featured in the popular Sunday gospel Get Lifted celebration are Anita Wilson, Bri Babineaux, Erica Campbell, Fred Hammond, Greater Sound of Greater St. Stephen FGBC, Jonathan McReynolds, Kierra Sheard, Kirk Franklin, Koryn Hawthorne, Marvin Sapp, Tamela Mann, The Clark Sisters, The Walls Group, Tye Tribbett, and more, along with Sunday sermons from Bishop Paul S. Morton and Bishop T.D. Jakes.

Other culture-leaders and influencers raising their voices to speak include New Orleans, LA, Mayor LaToya Cantrell; Atlanta, GA, Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms; Chicago, IL, Mayor Lori Lightfoot; Washington, D.C., Mayor Muriel Bowser; Ferguson, MO, Mayor-Elect Ella Jones; San Francisco, CA, Mayor London Breed; Don Lemon; Ryan Michelle Bathe; Kirk and Tammy Franklin; Lori Harvey; Ryan Destiny; Lexi Underwood; Egypt Sherrod; Lisa Nichols; Master P.; Shaun T.; Tabitha Brown and more.

*Artists and schedules are subject to change.


WEEK 1 (6/25-6/28):

Merle Dandridge in Bonheur for Greenleaf’s Virtual Press Tour

Merle Dandridge was seen in Bonheur for Greenleaf’s Virtual Press Tour.

Styled by Christina Pacelli

Maelynn Lariat Necklace




A super chic lariat necklace crafted in sterling silver and embellished with Swarovski crystals complete with a bar-shaped charm.


Poppy Earrings




For effortless style with major impact-try our Poppy Gold Earrings!

Material: Gold-tone brass
Closure: Post
Size: 0.9″ x 0.8″





Eva Classic Clutch from SCORE! Official Game Day Bag: Casual and Cute Accessory

The upcoming football season will be here soon.  Everyone loves the tradition of the game but there’s one small detail that all women must be aware of.  Most games require the use of a clear handbag.  This can shock even the most stylish fashionista because what clear handbag actually coordinates with your look?

Thankfully, SCORE! Official Game Day Bag has you covered.  The company specializes in designer, clear bags in an array of colors and styles.

I could not be more excited than to serve as an official influencer for the company.  Why?  I will be giving you guys details about 12 unique handbags all year long.  It doesn’t get any better than that!

Yes, I am a handbag fanatic and believe that each bag serves a purpose.  The right handbag can elevate an entire outfit.  Let’s not overlook this small accessory!

In the photo, I wore the Eva Classic Clutch.  Not only is this particular bag fancy but meets all stadium guidelines.  For me, it served as a cute little crossbody for a day of running errands.  The Navy and Light Blue color was a vibrate contrast with my hot pink blouse and yellow flats.  There’s nothing better than dressing casual and cute!

Visit SCORE!  Official Game Day Bag to add this bag to your shopping cart.  Oh, use this coupon code to receive a discount: KW 20

Blouse:  Target | Crossbody Game Day Bag:  SCORE!  Official Game Day Bag | Flats:  Express


International supermodel, activist, and philanthropist Naomi Campbell kicks off the relaunch of the second season of her highly popular and well-received series, “No Filter with Naomi” – a limited-time production as a part of her “Being Naomi” YouTube channel. The first episode is completely focused around the #BlackLivesMatter movement; Naomi has curated a special guest conversation that will feature Rev. Al Sharpton, Opal Tometi (Author and Co-Founder of Black Lives Matter) and Alphonso David (President of the Human Rights Campaign) and will touch on current cultural and political talking points that speak toward what humanity is experiencing globally – the fight for social justice, race, gender, and sex equality and its effect on world citizens.
The intimate, live-streamed daily series which first debuted on April 6th, has invited fans to #stayhome and save lives during this critical time and has focused on in-depth, career-spanning conversations between Naomi and a close group of her friends. “No Filter with Naomi,” which has already amassed over 2,844,000 views, has featured some of the most globally recognized figures in fashion, entertainment and beauty including Cindy Crawford, Marc Jacobs, Nicole Richie, Ashley Graham, Pierpaolo Piccoli, Lee Daniels, Christy Turlington, Adut Akech, Sharon Stone, Paris Hilton, Serena Williams, and Venus Williams, Karlie Kloss, Anna Wintour, Sean “Diddy” Comb and Jackie Aina.

WHO: International Supermodel, Activist, and Philanthropist, Naomi Campbell
WHAT: Relaunch of Naomi’s YouTube exclusive series – “No Filter With Naomi,” dedicated to #BlackLivesMatter – featuring guests Rev. Al Sharpton, Opal Tometi (Author and Co-Founder of Black Lives Matter) and Alphonso David (President of the Human Rights Campaign)
WHEN: Weekdays at 3 pm EST, starting Tuesday, June 23rd, 2020
WHERE: Streaming live on Naomi Campbell’s YouTube Channel


Naomi Campbell was born in London, England, and discovered as a fashion model at age 15. Throughout her career, she’s fronted the covers of over 1000 magazines, been featured in campaigns for celebrated houses including Burberry, Prada, Dolce & Gabbana, Marc Jacobs, and Louis Vuitton, and walked iconic shows for Chanel, Azzedine Alaia, Christian Dior, and Versace. Beyond her work in the fashion & entertainment industries, Campbell has used her celebrity for an array of fundraising and non-profit initiatives across the globe. Environmentalism, as well as Human Rights and Global Health, as it specifically pertains to women and children, have been critical sectors of Campbell’s work. She has also formed her own non-profit, Fashion For Relief, a charitable organization founded in 2005 that has raised funds for various environmental and humanitarian causes. It holds events in association with the London-based non-profit organization CARE. Today, Campbell is undoubtedly solidifying her place as a cultural innovator- using her incredible platform and success for positive change across industries around the world.


ESSENCE, the leading media, technology, and commerce company serving Black women and communities, today announced its 2020 ESSENCE Festival of Culture: Unstoppable Virtual Experience Presented by Coca-Cola. For the first time in the Festival’s 26-year history, the much-anticipated celebration – which annually draws more than 500,000 attendees and contributes almost $300 million in economic impact over July 4th weekend in New Orleans – will be produced as a fully virtual experience spanning two weekends of programming that entertain, empower, inspire, educate and mobilize. Taking place on June 25-28 and July 2-5 (Thursdays-Sundays) and streaming on ESSENCE Studios, the multi-day experience will extend to a global audience of viewers and feature virtual performances, summits, panels, and more including leading musical artists, influencers and experts from around the world. ESSENCE’s #BlackVotesMatter365 voting hub will also be a core element of the virtual Festival including quick access to helpful resources for Black women and communities to amplify their voices in local and national elections through voting. The Festival will also include a benefit initiative to raise funds to support the critical needs and sustainability of Black and Brown entrepreneurs, micro and small businesses, and organizations focused on racial equity across the U.S. For an up-to-date artist lineup and schedule, click here.

“Due to COVID-19, this was certainly not the year we planned for the 2020 ESSENCE Festival of Culture, but challenging times call for innovative measures,” said Richelieu Dennis, founder & chair, Essence Ventures (parent company of ESSENCE). “As we began to see the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on our community, it became more important to us than ever to still create a Festival experience that delivered the community, love, laughter, fun, and empowerment that the Festival is known for—and to leave our audience feeling inspired and uplifted, especially during these times. “For 50 years, it has been ESSENCE’s mission to provide content that our community needs – when they need it, and we are thrilled that ESSENCE Studios has been the perfect platform to deliver our offline experiences, such as Festival, for the first time ever virtually. We are also appreciative of our partners for their support and vision as we continue to navigate this time together and provide quality programming, a stellar lineup of musical talent, leading experts and thought leaders, and the epicenter of global Black culture that the only ESSENCE can.”

The 2020 ESSENCE Festival of Culture will feature a global ensemble of performers, including Amanda Black, Andra Day, Bell Biv Devoe (“BBD”), Bruno Mars, Burna Boy, Common, D-Nice, Damian Marley, Diamond Platnumz, Doug E. Fresh, Elephant Man, Estelle, India. Arie, John Legend, Ledisi, NAS, Patti LaBelle, Raphael Saadiq, Rapsody, Sauti Sol, Shaggy, Swizz Beatz, and more, hosted by Loni Love. Leading a special tribute to the city of New Orleans will be Mayor LaToya Cantrell, PJ Morton, Big Freedia, Irma Thomas, Tank and The Bangas, and Big 6 Brass Band. Also, featured in the popular Sunday gospel Get Lifted celebration are Anita Wilson, Bri Babineaux, Erica Campbell, Fred Hammond, Greater Sound of Greater St. Stephen FGBC, Jonathan McReynolds, Kierra Sheard, Kirk Franklin, Koryn Hawthorne, Marvin Sapp, Tamela Mann, The Clark Sisters, The Walls Group, Tye Tribbett, and more, along with Sunday sermons from Bishop Paul S. Morton and Bishop T.D. Jakes.

Other culture-leaders and influencers raising their voices to speak include Steph and Ayesha Curry; Rev. Al Sharpton; Ryan Michelle Bathe; Don Lemon; New Orleans, LA, Mayor LaToya Cantrell; Atlanta, GA, Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms; Chicago, IL, Mayor Lori Lightfoot; Washington, D.C., Mayor Muriel Bowser; Ferguson, MO, Mayor-Elect Ella Jones; San Francisco, CA, Mayor London Breed; Tamika Mallory; Lori Harvey; Teyana Taylor; Iman Shumpert; Ryan Destiny; Kirk and Tammy Franklin; Lexi Underwood; Egypt Sherrod; Lena Waithe; Lisa Nichols; Marc Morial; Master P; Naomi Campbell; Nia Long; Shaun T.; Tabitha Brown and more.

With an impressive slate of talent, the 2020 ESSENCE Festival of Culture will deliver diverse programming within the following daily overviews:


  • ESSENCE Wellness House [5 PM-9 PM (ET)]: Kickstart your path to recovery with meditation, conversations, workouts, and tutorials designed to boost your mental, physical, spiritual, emotional, and financial wellbeing.


  • ESSENCE Beauty Carnival [5 PM-9 PM (ET)]: Step inside a virtual beauty sphere with top brands, makeup artists, hairstylists, skincare experts, and more! Stream live tutorials and get expert tips for accentuating your own flawless beauty with products and brands that are making a splash across the globe.
  • ESSENCE After Dark [9 PM-10 PM (ET)]: Tune in for music brought to you by your favorite stars.


  • Wealth & Power [2 PM-6 PM (ET)]: Get the tools you need to invest in yourself and make strides in entrepreneurship, career, and personal finance. Plus, get the latest on the 2020 candidates, the issues that matter most…and why your voice counts!
  • Entertainment All-Access [6 PM-7 PM (ET)]: Catch your Hollywood favorites in Q&As and be the first to see exclusive sneak peeks of the hottest upcoming releases.
  • Evening Concert Series [7 PM-10 PM (ET)]: Our explosive evening concert series goes digital! Catch the #ESSENCEFest all-star lineup in performances to benefit and celebrate our Essential Heroes, Black-owned businesses and entrepreneurs.


  • Get Lifted Gospel Sunday Celebration [11 AM-1 PM (ET)]: Tune in for Sunday worship featuring powerful words of praise and legendary Gospel performances.

In addition, as the fight against COVID-19 rages on in states across the country, many essential workers continue to be on the frontlines helping to ensure the nation’s health, safety, and essential needs are met. ESSENCE is honoring these workers with its first-ever ESSENCE Essential Heroes Awards program. This three-part, the year-long franchise will highlight those who, despite systematic disparities, have risen to become Essential Heroes in their communities during this pandemic. A ceremony recognizing the 50 ESSENCE Essential Heroes honorees will be streamed live via ESSENCE Studios during the virtual Festival experience on Saturday, July 4th.

The 2020 ESSENCE Festival is presented by Coca-Cola. Major sponsors include Ford, McDonald’s, Walmart, My Black is Beautiful, P&G.

For more information and to register, visit Join the conversation via social @EssenceFest.


*Artists and schedules are subject to change.



Essence Communications, Inc. is the number one media, technology, and commerce company dedicated to Black women and communities and inspires a global audience of more than 31 million through diverse storytelling and immersive original content. With a multi-platform presence in publishing, experiential and online, ESSENCE encompasses its signature magazine; digital, video and social platforms; television specials; books; and live events, including Black Women in Music™, Black Women in Hollywood™, Beauty Carnival™ and the ESSENCE Festival of Culture™. Essence Communications is owned by Essence Ventures, an independent Black-owned, consumer technology company merging content, community, and commerce to meet the evolving cultural and lifestyle needs of people of color.


The ESSENCE Festival of Culture is the world’s largest cultural, music, entertainment, and empowerment experience and the global epicenter of Black culture. As a platform to advance global Black culture, economic ownership and inclusion, and community development, it has contributed more than $4 billion to the local New Orleans economy since its inception. It has also created a home for Black communities around the world and routinely attracts more than half a million international attendees over July 4th weekend. In 2019, the Festival celebrated its 25th anniversary–and annually contributes almost $300 million in economic impact to the City of New Orleans and the State of Louisiana.

Miss USA, Miss America and HBCU Queens Speak on Black Beauty and Freedom

Guests Include Carole Gist (First Black Miss USA), Ericka Dunlap (Miss America 2004), Miss FAMU and Miss Jackson State

Miss USA, Miss America, and HBCU queens join together for a meaningful conversation about the origins of Juneteenth traditions and the intersection of Black beauty and Black freedom. The event is hosted by The Museum of Black Beauty.

WHEN: Thursday, June 18; 7 pm EST

WHERE: Via Zoom Meeting:

Meeting ID: 955 2034 2774
Via phone:

+13126266799,,95520342774# US (Chicago)

Business 101: Understanding Efficiency and Sustainability in the Fashion Industry

From the earliest days of the industrial revolution, companies in all industries have sought after technology that would improve efficiency in the workplace. With the introduction of the power loom in the 1800s, the development of cotton gin, and the mechanized cotton spinning techniques the fashion industry saw technology improve their businesses.

Two centuries after the industrial revolutions, technology is revolutionizing how the world works in life-changing ways.

However, now that a pandemic has struck the world, the fashion industry will have to embrace sustainability to overcome these unprecedented challenges. Although sustainability is in danger, the companies that commit to it will be among the leaders of the renascent fashion industry as we reach the other side of the pandemic.

Featured Photo from

Why is it Important for the Fashion Industry to be Efficient and Sustainable?

While traditional brands and retailers are struggling to manage inventory, overstock, and decrease consumer spending, some fashion brands are thriving in the corona crisis with sustainable designs.

Currently, sustainability and efficiency in fashion is a hot button topic. Fashion brands, both large and small, are trying to prove their green credentials. Nevertheless, the world’s desire for new attire makes the industry one of the largest polluters.

A significant amount of environmental resources go into making the clothing we wear. For instance, it requires nearly 20,000 liters of water to make just a pair of jeans and a t-shirt. This is almost the amount of water that a person will drink in 13 years.

Furthermore, harmful chemicals, non-biodegradable packaging, and global transport of goods add to the environmental cost.

However, consumers are more mindful. They want to know where and how their clothes are produced and demand ethical practices and responsible retailing. Also, technology is shaping the industry in unpredictable ways. It is undeniable that the fashion industry needs to adapt. Both manufacturers and retailers have to find innovative solutions like the few brands already doing so.

How Can You Improve Your Company’s Efficiency?

From social media apps to augmented reality, technology is changing the way people shop. Fashion brands are adapting to these changes to get their products in front of customers. Here are a few examples of technology that can significantly improve your fashion brand’s efficiency:

  • Invest in PLM software

Apparel chains are complex. Thus, maintaining control and the right level of communication between all the parties involved is highly essential. Using apparel product lifecycle management software, you will be able to coordinate and directly track every aspect of the brand, from product design to development, sourcing, and retail.

The record of end-to-end design, production, and retail process in a single place helps companies deliver accurate and transparent information to the consumers and, in turn, make smart decisions. The improved efficiency brought about through better communication and more predictable costs and timelines further leave a positive impact on suppliers.

  • Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning

Artificial Intelligence (AI) adds value to almost every part of the fashion industry. Leveraging AI and machine learning, fashion brands can improve the efficiency of the system through intelligent automation and improving sales processes using guided sales processes and predictive analytics. Additionally, the introduction of chatbots and voice assistant devices helps fashion brands gather data by asking customers questions to understand their needs and purchase patterns.

  • Inventory Management

Optimizing inventory management adds to the agility and overall performance of your organization. Moving inventory quickly through the supply chain prevents the need for huge discounts and unwanted inventory pile up.

Keeping track of your inventory will allow you to have a quicker inventory turn around, which will positively affect your company’s bottom line. Knowing what you have in stock and what you need to restock will help keep your inventory margins down, waste less, and keep costs down.

  • Training Employees

Training employees about sustainability helps them come up with new ideas that support the company’s sustainability goals. When each employee understands the seriousness of the matter and is ready to commit, it will become easier for the organization to set action plans and do things more sustainably.

You will also want to train your employees on inventory management to help your company waste less and remain sustainably responsible.

  • Online Stores Instead of Brick and Mortar

In the era of connectivity, secure payment experiences, digital wallets, and online shops, you can easily shop online and purchase something with the click of a button. Mobile-friendly shopping experiences effectively reduce search time by helping customers find products and shops all through their smartphones.

Online stores also create less waste and use fewer resources. Online stores don’t have to operate the same way as a brick and mortar store. You can cut down on electricity, take up less space, and avoid paying to rent a retail space.

How Can You Improve Your Sustainability?

As stated earlier, the fashion industry is one of the most significant contributors to pollution. Customers, as well as brands, are inching towards sustainable fashion. Here are some vital benefits that sustainability in the fashion industry brings about:

  • Meet Consumers Demands

Primarily, sustainability helps meet the changing consumer demands. As people prefer greener alternatives, adopting sustainability will help your company ace the game.

  • Reduce Pollution

Sustainability in the fashion industry means a reduced rate of pollution. Sustainable products such as organic fabrics can be recycled and reused, thereby reducing waste in the environment.

  • Economic Balance

Fast fashion often leads to loss and overspending. Most importantly, it leads to the dumping of unsold and outdated products when new and trendy designs become popular. When companies make sustainable products more frequently, it will help them earn profit as well as strike an economic balance.

  • Social Awareness

Employees in fast fashion companies work extra hours and often get paid less due to the large number of new designs they need to produce in a short amount of time. On the other hand, sustainability will enable these employees to work regular hours since apparel will not have to create items in bulk.

  • Give Back To The Community

Sustainability in the fashion industry is also about giving back to society. Companies will often take the time to support sustainability by giving back to the community in different ways, such as distributing their profits to non-profit organizations, donating unsold items to people in need, and promoting sustainability.

How Can Technology Save the Fashion Industry and Make It More Sustainable?

  • With the rise of environmentally friendly and sustainable materials like alternative textiles, the fashion industry has considerably reduced waste and pollution. Natural fibers such as cotton are resource-intensive and synthetic materials like polyester, acrylic, and nylon degrade and slowly leave behind harmful chemicals. Turning to eco-friendly textile alternatives made from leaves and rinds better support sustainability.

  • The fashion industry is full of options, but repairing and redesigning happens to be the trendiest of them. Following the 5 R’s of fashion – Reduce, Repair, Recycle, Repurpose, and Reinvent –both brands and consumers are becoming more sustainable.

  • Low waste and eco-friendly packaging, labels, etc. are made from plant-based or fossil fuel materials. When you dispose of these materials, they will break down quickly and provide essential nutrients to the earth. Recyclable packaging can be reformed and used again.

  • Thanks to the inventory management technologies, fashion’s waste problem is slowly transforming. The massive amount of unsold and surplus clothes and materials are responsible for ten percent of the world’s carbon emissions. By adopting strict inventory management and guidelines, brands are cutting down excess merchandise, reducing the environmental impact.

  • Product and brand transparency allows customers to know whether their favorite brands are following sustainable and ethical practices when manufacturing clothes. Additionally, it also helps identify and protect vulnerable people and the planet.

Time to Become More Sustainable

As the world still tries to navigate its way through the pandemic, the road ahead is still unclear, and many questions remain. However, the most crucial lesson that COVID-19 teaches us is that health, safety, and prosperity are collective pursuits rather than individual ones.

By successfully weaving sustainability into your business strategy and by leveraging the latest technologies, not only can you make your fashion industry more environmentally friendly but also your business more successful.

Collaborative Post


M·A·C Cosmetics is excited to announce a highly anticipated, limited-edition makeup launch in collaboration with one of the most versatile entertainers of her generation, Teyana Taylor.

M·A·C  x Teyana Taylor collection has been over a year in the making, born out of a partnership between M·A·C and Teyana stemming from her authentic love for the brand and its artistry.

As a powerful, creative artist, Teyana taps into the spirit of individuality, is a trendsetter, and a true embodiment of M·A·C’s creative compass. Inspired by her love for classic 90’s fashion and beauty, Teyana worked alongside M·A·C to create her exclusive, multi-product collection – from the products, packaging, product names, and even the photoshoot. “I was inspired by the 90s and the heart & soul of Harlem and wanted to show that through the shades and packaging.” – Teyana Taylor.

Teyana has been a true fan of the brand since she was 15 years old and began mixing, matching, and playing with M·A·C products to develop her own finishes, colors, and textures. Her first memory was receiving a gift box filled with M·A·C products from special-deco collections like Hello Kitty and the iconic Alexander McQueen collaboration. The M·A·C x Teyana Taylor Collection was created to embody a new approach to beauty; encouraging fans to create their own version of her style and vibe.

“I’m very excited to be partnering with a company like M•A•C who I’ve watched collaborate with strong women of color over the years. I’ve been a fan of M•A•C ever since I was 15 years old and started experimenting with makeup, it was the first brand that made me like makeup. I’m so grateful and excited to be sharing this beautiful collection I created with the M•A•C team but also hoping to inspire other young women that anything and everything is possible.” – Teyana Taylor. “As a longtime friend of the brand, we’ve grown to know and love Teyana for having a style unlike anyone else.

She’s fierce, bold and unapologetically herself, no matter what she’s wearing – all qualities we stand for at M•A•C, and are so excited to bring to life through this new collaboration.” Ukonwa Ojo, Global Chief Marketing Officer and Senior Vice President, Global Marketing, M•A•C Cosmetics.

As a Dancer, Choreographer, Actress, Model, Fitness aficionado, Songwriter, Producer, Director, and now M·A·C’s newest collaborator, Teyana embodies artistry boldly, originally and without boundaries. Stay tuned for more details about M·A·C X Teyana Taylor, coming soon.



BLOOM readers, I would like to introduce Arlene Henderson.  Motivational Speaker, Author, Empowerment Coach, and Blogger, Arlene has blazed the Birmingham, Alabama community.

With her warm personality, she imparts wisdom to those around her; striving to be a light in a world filled with darkness!

BLOOM SPOTLIGHT:  Arlene Henderson

  • When you think of the word “successful,” who’s the first person who comes to mind and why?

When it comes to a “successful” relationship I think first about Barak & Michelle Obama. Together they managed to lead with strength, grace, and dignity during their eight years in the White House as the first African American First Family. This is something that I will treasure forever. The Obamas were real friends. They enjoyed life. They expressed love while encouraging all of us to take the high road when faced with adversity. The couple was often criticized for being President and First Lady which is what I believe they were always destined to be.

  • What is the number one way we can make a difference in our community?

We can make a difference in our community by communicating with each other. The bible tells us to seek wisdom and get an understanding of all that we do. We cannot do that unless we have an open and honest conversation. We will never conquer hard topics until we address them head-on. It is time to talk about the big elephant in the room. We all love our country but we must do the hard work for the love to shine through. This also requires us to listen to each other even when it is a topic we don’t really want to discuss. Its time to do some deep cleaning/communicating of our hearts and minds to make a difference.

  • What has helped you get to where you are and what advice would you give to others on the same path?

My path has been very rocky, so my first piece of advice would be to get a clear understanding of who you are through God’s word. Establishing a personal relationship with God and staying connected to him will help when life comes at you from all directions. If you do not know who you are, you will end up trying to be something that was not purposed for your life.

My advice to others on the same path would be to get connected with like-minded people who are willing to help and encourage you along the way. You will need someone to journey with you in life if you are going to ever accomplish something great. I do not mean great in the monetary sense, but great in the sense of what did you to do help or inspire others. Think about what legacy are you leaving?

  • Do you have a specific experience where you wish you had done things differently?

Absolutely. I wish I would have taken time to be focused on what I wanted out of life for me. Instead of trying to be what the person I was with at the time wanted me to be. I feel like I lost my identity at such a young age in a relationship and it has taken over two decades for me to find my true self. Sharing all my challenging experiences helped me find my strength and my voice.

  • What advice would you give to your 20-, 25-, or 30-year-old self? And please place where you were at the time, and what you were doing.

I would not go back to my twenties even if I had the chance. I was so naive and gullible to life and people. I trusted everyone and was hurt by so many. I thought that if I were the best friend and girlfriend then that would make people love me. I was so wrong. I was looking for something in other people instead of finding it in myself first. It was a case of the blind leading the blind. But I was so blind and immature I thought everyone had it together but me. I would tell my 20-, 25-, or 30-year-old self, to learn to love yourself. Unconditional love will only be found in you through Jesus Christ. I would advise that it cannot be purchased or manipulated into being something it is not. Slow down and plan for your future. Be prepared for your future – mentally, physically, and financially.

  • How has a failure, or apparent failure, set you up for later success? Or, do you have a favorite failure of yours?

Failure has humbled me. Failure has made me grow up. Failure has taught me that I cannot leave anything to happen by chance. It has taught me that I am responsible for my own happiness and wellbeing. I must be connected to good and healthy people but I cannot require more from them than I require from myself.

All of this has taught me that I can do things that I once dreamed of. My failures taught me to believe in me and stop counting myself out. Why not me is the question I as now!

Do you have a quote you live your life by or think of often? I have scripture and quote.

One of my favorite scriptures is: Psalms 46:5 “God is within her, she will not fall, God will help her at the break of day.”

Break of day means everything is new each morning. So, if I can make it through the midnight, I know morning restores me to full capacity to start all over again.

And my quote is “Hear My Cry, We Are Better Together”. Every great movement begins with a sound. I want to be a sound that is everlasting, long after I am gone.

Follow Arlene Henderson and learn more about her platform on social media:  FacebookInstagramTwitter, and LinkedIn.


Nuno Wearable Art Eco-Products

Nuno is a luxurious brand of wearable art that you can feel good about.

  • Nuno collaborates with up-and-coming artists ensuring each earth-loving piece is one-of-a-kind wearable art.
  • Plastic bottles are washed, shredded, and turned into small pellets. These pellets are then melted and spun into yarn. The yarn is then woven into this fabric with a luxurious feel, Neosilk™.
  • Unlike the silk robes and scarves that are dry clean only, Nuno’s NeoSilk fabric is machine washable and will still stay as soft as silk.