Since the debut of the first Vogue issue in 1892, the admired “fashion bible” has primarily chosen, with a few exceptions, Caucasian women for their cover. However, the renowned singer and actress, Beyoncé Knowles, graces the 2015 September issue. (The largest edition of the year) This is not Beyoncé’s first cover, it’s closer to her fifth or sixth; however, it begins a string of covers this September that platform beautiful and successful black women and men – and it’s not just Essence magazine.
The successful pop singer Ciara is on the cover of a fitness magazine, Shape; a young Willow Smith is on the cover of a creative magazine, i-D; Kerry Washington graces the cover of a magazine that specializes in health, wellness, beauty, and style, Self; and Serena Williams is on the cover of an American magazine of reportage and commentary, The New Yorker. The list goes on including Variety, Essence, Ebony, and Paper magazine for choosing Balmain creative director, Oliver Rousteing and singer/actress Jennifer Lopez for their September issue.
Penetrating the fashion industry is often a difficult task for black professionals and celebrities, as noted by Kanye West. The struggle has been publicized with the likes of Kanye West and his fashion line, black models fighting to get covers and spots in couture shows, and even young black students attempting to land an internship within the industry. With jobs and positions that were projected for white women to fill, it is exciting to see the surplus of covers this September that are displaying black culture and providing a platform for black professionals.