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beauty is pop culture // sex rules the world 

  • Chelsea Mtada

The Big Beauty Opportunity in Black Cultural Moments and Events

Credit: Topicals

From #TopicalsGoneToGhana to Notting Hill Carnival: Unleashing the Power of Beauty in Black Spaces

In recent times, there has been a noticeable shift in the beauty industry's landscape, with brands recognising the immense potential and cultural significance of engaging with creators and communities. At the forefront of this transformative approach is Topicals, a brand that has not only set a precedent but has unveiled a pathway for beauty brands to authentically connect with diverse audiences, contribute to local economies and redefine the beauty experience from a Black perspective.

Topicals' triumphant #TopicalsGoneToGhana campaign during Detty December stands as a testament to the immense success and positive reception that beauty brands can achieve when aligning themselves with culturally rich events led by the Black community. In an industry where influencer marketing often faces scepticism, and brand trips are met with criticism, Topicals emerged as a game-changer by orchestrating a masterclass in influencer engagement that showcased its products while creating an authentic and engaging narrative.

Credit: Topicals

The strategic decision to curate a week-long journey to Accra, Ghana, was not just a marketing endeavour for Topicals; it was a conscientious effort to participate in and contribute to the celebration of Detty December, a period of cultural exuberance and homecoming for the diaspora.

By actively engaging with events like Detty December, beauty brands have the opportunity to transcend traditional marketing boundaries and become an integral part of cultural celebrations, fostering genuine connections with diverse audiences.

The success of Topicals' Ghana trip can be attributed to several factors, one being the brand's positive reputation, especially among younger consumers. Since its 2020 launch, Topicals has garnered a dedicated following, becoming a cult favourite for its science-backed skincare products.

By strategically aligning itself with Detty December, the brand not only showcased its products but also became a participant in the celebration, reinforcing the idea that beauty brands can be more than just cosmetic providers—they can be active contributors to cultural moments.

From an economic perspective, beauty brands participating in black-led cultural events can play a pivotal role in contributing to local economies. In the case of Detty December, where tourists from the diaspora flock to Ghana, brands have the opportunity to not only engage with a global audience but also stimulate local businesses and artisans. This symbiotic relationship can foster economic growth, promote local talent, and create a sustainable impact beyond the confines of a marketing campaign.

Furthermore, the significance of beauty experiences from the Black perspective cannot be overstated. Historically, beauty ideals and narratives have been predominantly shaped by Western brands who have a higher consideration for White creators and influencers, often neglecting the diverse range of creators within the Black community.

Events like Detty December provide a platform for amplifying Black voices, celebrating beauty in all its rich and varied forms outside the confines and context of Western standards. Beauty brands participating in such events can actively contribute to breaking down traditional beauty norms, fostering inclusivity, and highlighting the unique beauty experiences of their Black consumers.

As we look to the future, the trajectory for beauty brands engaging with black-led cultural events appears promising. The success of Topicals' Detty December journey foreshadows a shift in the beauty industry towards more unconventional and culturally rich influencer trips. The emphasis on diversity, inclusivity, and cultural relevance is poised to become increasingly crucial for brands seeking to connect with the evolving values of millennial and Gen Z consumers.

Credit: Javanie Stephens, An Ode to Notting Hill Carnival Photography Javanie Stephens

The prospect of beauty pop-ups and experiences at iconic cultural events like Detty December, Notting Hill Carnival or Recessland holds tremendous potential for the beauty industry. These events, known for their vibrant atmospheres and diverse crowds, present a unique opportunity for beauty brands to engage with black audiences in new ways.

For example, Notting Hill Carnival, a celebration of Caribbean culture and diversity, could serve as an ideal platform for beauty brands to showcase their products and engage with a broad and multicultural audience. The carnival's lively atmosphere, filled with music, dance, and colourful costumes, creates a dynamic backdrop for beauty pop-ups.

Brands could set up interactive booths, offering makeup touch-ups and hair braiding stations. Given the carnival's emphasis on self-expression and bold aesthetics, beauty brands could curate special edition products or collaborate with local artists to capture the spirit of the event.

In conclusion, the future of beauty brands showing up at black-led cultural events like Detty December should not just be for one moment, #TopicalsGoneToGhana should mark the beginning of a transformative movement. By actively participating in cultural moments, beauty brands can forge genuine connections, break down historical barriers, and become integral contributors to the evolving and inclusive beauty landscape.

Are you passionate about exploring the intricate worlds of beauty, sex, wellness and culture ? Do you belong to a marginalised community and have unique perspectives and stories to share? If so, Nightstand Service is eagerly seeking contributing writers like you! Get in touch:


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