“If Black Girl Magic was a place it would be Essence Festival.” says a very impassioned Mel B coming off a high of her weekend in New Orleans. According to ESSENCE magazine, the festival garnered 500,000 people, its highest amount of attendees in 24 years of existence. The festival known for the celebration of black womanhood is like the mecca where every woman present is an expert in their field. Our own girl boss founder, Melissa Butler talked with us about the magic that happened in NOLA, learning from her peers and all things beauty whilst traveling.
Courtesy of Melissa
In a short car ride we covered everything from Mel B speaking on panels with Queen Latifah and Mona Scott Young (Creator of Love & Hip Hop) to brunches with Missy Elliot and Mary J. Blige, podcasting with Forbes columnist Julian Mitch and the premiere of her appearance in Renae Bluitt of In Her Shoes Blog’s documentary #SheDidThat. The aftermath of the premiere is that Chase Bank partnered with Karleen Roy of The Vanity Group to throw Melissa, Lisa Price (Carol’s Daughter) and marketing guru turned digital strategist and author, Luvvie a party to celebrate their wins. Furthermore, this experience inspired Melissa to continue supporting those who support her.
“It was so beneficial and like I was consistently being fed so I just felt warm and fuzzy inside I just felt like I was doing things right and I was surrounded by my peers who were doing things right” Butler says, when asked about how the festival impacted her in terms of her perspectives on beauty, business and self-care. In a world that celebrates entrepreneurship amongst black women as simply being “Superwoman” the founder and bawse babe has managed to effectively portray all elements of entrepreneurship, from the glitz and glam of running a successful beauty company to the gritty ugly parts that ultimately end up becoming beautiful.
Yet, Renae Bluitt's She Did That wasn't the only medium exposing those ugly moments, music superstars Mary J Blige and Missy Elliot both shed a light on vulnerability within black womanhood describing their hard times, sacrifices and gratitude for sisterhood while at their brunch. Both women cried together and it spoke volumes letting everyone everywhere know that powerhouses cry too.
Richelieu Dennis, Mary J. Blige Courtesy of Melissa
Courtesy of Melissa
We’re so ecstatic about Mel B’s experience at the Essence Fest, not only was she asked to speak on several panels but she was VIP while doing so, whilst enjoying all of Janet Jackson's wonder and seeing her mentor Richelieu Dennis, be honored by Reverand Al Sharpton. Her stories are sensational, and we are overjoyed at how affirmative the festival was for this helluva brainchild, The Lip Bar.
Beauty Hacks During Essence Festival:
Press On Nails $8.99 Light coverage = no eyeshadow, glossy lips, fire blush and highlighter + slick back poofy ponytail.