What Beauty Look Were You Influenced To Try?


I get an immediate dopamine rush whenever a pristinely styled person crosses my path. But...I'm cool about it. First, I do a cursory scan of their glorious mosaic of an outfit. The style goddess registers my appreciation as a quick nod, the most classy and timeless of wordless communications. Only when they leave my subway car—and rightfully transfer to a fluffy cloud where the conductor is a cherub, feeding passengers grapes while transporting them to their place of work—do I let out a breath. I’ve already taken a dozen mental snapshots, like it’s 2009 and my excitable brain is lookbook.nu.

It's always like this: I see a look. I LOVE it. And then I save it away—in a corner of my mind or literally, in my IG Saved Folder—and take it out for a spin later. Inspiration at its finest. Especially this summer, when the lewks were full of Hot Girls with an excess of joie de vivre. In this last gasp of summer, I’ve been influenced into buying Diorshow On Stage Liquid Eyeliner in Matte White (thanks Euphoria), getting sparkly nails (also Euphoria), and trying straight-back cornrows. It’s a hairstyle I’ve noticed on five Glossier HQ colleagues, Yara Shahidi, RiRi, Jorja Smith, Imaan Hamman, and every other Black girl that came across my feed in the past three months, including Mekdes Mersha, and Lynette Nylander.

It was my first time getting my hair braided in such a snatched way, and my cheekbones and peers have complimented me so much for doing so. And the cherry on top? When artist Kilo Kish surprised the living daylights out of me by stopping by ITG last week—unannounced and in cornrows. I squealed, "I was NOT prepared to meet you today." She laughed and said, “We’re twins!” I smiled then, but soon after became deceased. I rise again to ask you this:

What was the last beauty look were you influenced to get? Let’s unpack how nothing is original—and why copycatting is pretty fun. The world is your moodboard, so carry on in the comments.

—Utibe Mbagwu

Photo via ITG.