This TokTok Series Combines Black History Month With Makeup
This Black History Month, one TikToker is using her following (and her makeup skills) for good.
Ariam, better known as @iambrattyb on TikTok, is spending the entire month of February educating her 42 thousand followers about Black historical figures and Black beauty trends from the past. She spends each 45-second video transforming herself into a Black icon like Ma Rainey or Ella Fitzgerald with historically-accurate makeup, adding text with facts about each figure.
The series kicked off on January 31 with a teaser where Ariam explained the purpose of the project: “I’m excited to teach y’all about iconic figures that deserve more praise! This ‘Decades of Black Beauty’ series will shine light on Black figures and their achievements along with beauty/makeup trends through each decade.”
“This was something I came up with last year when I began to take content creating seriously,” Ariam tells Allure. “I grew up listening to a wide array of artists and I wanted to find a way to talk about these icons on my platforms. I thought it would be important for others to know that Black History goes farther than the more well known figures mentioned every year.”
Ariam plans to spend February sharing educational makeup videos centered around various Black historical figures. So far, she’s featured Ma Rainey, Betty Boop (who was inspired by cabaret singer Baby Esther Jones), and Ella Fitzgerald.
While we’re super into the makeup, it’s the factual tidbits that are at the heart of this series. Of Ma Rainey, Ariam writes, “what’s most inspiring is that her lyrical content directly referenced her own bisexual tendencies (it’s not known what she identified as specifically),” all while lining her lips and smoking out her shadow.
“My main goal is for readers to feel inclined to do their own research and learn more about these figures,” Ariam explains. “There’s only so much I can fit in a 60 second video, so I hope that people will take the next step by stepping out of their boundaries when learning about Black Historic figures. This series hopefully helps to get the ball rolling for others.”
Follow along with Ariam’s Black History Month series here.
More on Black beauty:
Now, watch Zendaya try nine things she’s never done before:
All products featured on Allure are independently selected by our editors. However, when you buy something through our retail links, we may earn an affiliate commission.