Black and brown girls have been revolutionizing the beauty industry for decades, but Sephora has changed the game by featuring the first Afro-Hawaiian model in a major campaign!
Taija Kerr is a striking 23-year-old beauty who works at a Sephora store in New York City. She, along with 1,000 other store employees, applied to become one of 10 faces for their end of the year campaign. Kerr shared her excitement on Twitter about her fierce face being featured in a tweet that now has over 62,000 retweets.
"Aloha I’m Taija, 23, this year all of my insecurities brought me the biggest opportunity of my life.," Kerr said. "I am the FIRST Afro-Hawaiian Women to be displayed on a beauty campaign. Mahalo @sephora."
While there were tens of thousands of people praising Kerr, there were others who were genuinely confused as to how she defined herself as an "Afro-Hawaiian." Kerr was more than happy to explain.
"Most don't have curly 'Afro' curly hair and I have the [softer] Hawaiian features, my father is Hawaiian, my mother is black , so IM considered 'Afro-Hawaiian' to put them together."
The website POPSUGAR caught up with Black Girl Magic model for a chat about her Sephora feature. She recognized the social significance that her inclusion in the campaign means to global culture. She hopes that she not only becomes a role model but this campaign will spark conversations about the blending of Africans, Hawaiians, and Polynesian cultures.
“The response I got to something so important to me that I thought would be small to the world became an actual topic of discussion and an insight on not only Afro-Hawaiians but Polynesians, period,” she said.
“My supporters support me on the stance of being a strong woman clarify and her identity. Who’s reppin the Poly’s though?! No, really? I can count how many celebrities I know in the media and entertainment industry who are Polynesian on one hand,” she continued. “It’s sad I didn’t have any Polynesian public figure as inspiration growing up as a young child, hopefully I become someone the keiki (children) can look up to.”
We can't wait to see more of this beauty! Congrats to Ms. Kerr for her beauty campaign!