Jackie Jackie Jackie Jackay! Our Girl Jackie Aina Covers Essence Digital Magazine
Youtube Sensation, Jackie Aina, Covers Essence Magazine
Jackie Aina covers Essence and we are here for it! Also, I’d like to go on record by declaring that we, and by we I mean me, little ole Lisa Jean-Francois from Boston, MA, interviewed Auntie Jackie two years ago when she first hit her first million subscribers on Youtube. You can read that article HERE. Yes, Essence, you’re late. Let me also point out, that I’ve been rocking with ole girl since she was known as LilPumpkin on the ‘tube. Back then I spent most of my time watching her videos and wondering how on God’s green Earth someone could be born with the very lashes I have to buy. But I digress, Auntie Jackie is on the cover of Essence, y’all!!
Even though I don’t watch Youtube as much as I did years ago, I still
stalk watch Ms. Aina’s Cinderlla-like glow up, and it is nothing short of amazing. Many have tried (myself included), but very few, like, very very few, have been able to do what she’s done.
But with millions of would-be Youtube creators uploading reviews and captivating their own audiences, it begs the question: what makes Jackie Aina so different from the rest?
Jackie Aina Covers Essence Magazine
The answer, I think, lies in the fact that unlike like content creators of old, Jackie was one of the first to openly discuss racial disparities in the beauty industry. It wasn’t so long ago when women who looked like me had to fight to find beauty products that catered to her skin tone in stores. And even when brands did have a wide shade range, they’d be lax about releasing those very shades to the stores in testers. We’d have to order our shades online, while our white counterparts had ready access to their shades in-store. It was wrong then and it’s wrong now, and Jackie risked losing her fans/followers/brand deals, by being vocal about it.
She had a choice, and she chose us.
She tells Essence:
This is a makeup channel. I’m going to have to eventually talk about the fact that my skin is dark…And then eventually I’m also going to tie in those experiences when I’m buying a product, as it relates to wearing makeup.”
Of course, the problem went beyond the foundation and concealer shade range. It extended into the way black consumers were treated in beauty retailors:
“I couldn’t go to makeup counters and get the help that I needed. I would ask them like, ‘Oh, how do I apply concealer?’ Or, ‘How do I contour?’ And it was always like my skin tone was a deterrent to everything,” she recalls. “According to them, it was like, ‘Well, you’re dark. So you can’t really do that.’ It was just like, ‘Okay, I’m sure there’s a way around it. You just have to know what you’re doing.’”
While observing these issues, which affected her personally, she opted to address them, head on, come hell or high water. We were and are grateful. Finally, somebody with a voice spoke our truth.
And now, after a decade of creating content, Jackie’s success is just getting started. I’ve seen her give Ted Talks, rub elbows with celebs, walk runways, speak at Universities, sit on all the digital panels, travel-nonstop, have her face beat by the OG’s Danessa Myricks and Pat McGrath, and make all the coins, honey. EVERY. LAST. COINT. But sis ain’t done.
According to Essence, the 31-year old, has some big things in the works, including her own makeup line, but she’s not stopping there. She has her eyes set on entering the fashion space, and even hosting her own TV segment. No matter what she does, we. are.here.for.it.
For more, check out Jackie’s full feature in Essence Digital HERE.