June is Pride Month, a time to honor the LGBTQA+ community. To celebrate this important month, Boca Beauty Academy wants to put the spotlight on some of the icons who have helped to shape the beauty industry in the past and present times.
The world is full of so many unique, diverse and talented people, and the beauty industry is making waves in celebrating the diversity of the world. Let’s take a look at just a few icons that have paved the way.
Since 1974, Thierry Mugler has been breaking down boundaries with his unique fashion and fragrances, while also advocating for the LGBTQ+ community. Mugler is a proud gay man and his influence on the beauty industry is undeniable.
He showcased transgender models on his runways in the 1980s–an unpopular course of action at this time and still not common in the industry today.
Mugler’s determination to proudly boost the LGBTQA+ community to center stage through fashion, makeup, hair, and more, is what sets him apart.
Dutch make-up artist, Nikkie de Jager, but more widely known as NikkieTutorials, has been leaving her mark on the beauty industry since her first YouTube video in 2009. Not only that, she is a proud, openly transgender beauty guru. Her videos have millions of views, and she has worked with industry icons like Marc Jacobs and Kylie Jenner.
Nikkie has not only been loved for her incredible makeup talent and amazing beauty looks, but for sharing her story openly and honestly with her audience. Nikkie has become an icon for the trans community.
3. Johnathan Van Ness
There’s no denying the impact that Johnathan Van Ness has had on the world, but specifically the LGBTQA+ community. Van Ness, known for being the dedicated and outgoing hairstylist on Queer Eye, found instant fame. Their likable personality and advocacy for the LGBTQA+ community has not gone unnoticed. The reality star and hair aficionado is open about navigating life with HIV, and being a committed anti-homophobia activist.
“I think what I would say is the most universal thing that I’ve learned is that at the end of the day, we all really want to be loved,” Van Ness said. “We really want to be loved, and we want to be loved for just living our authentic truth, which looks different to everyone.”
4. Way Bandy
Often hailed as one of the world’s best and first makeup artists, Way Bandy led the way for modern-day make-up artists. Bandy was renowned for his flawless and precise signature makeup style. A few celebrities on his client roster include Elizabeth Taylor, Diana Ross, Farrah Fawcett and First Lady Nancy Reagan.
Bandy was also an avid activist, committed to ending the harmful stigma around AIDS and the queer community. When Bandy died of the disease in 1986, he directed that his cause of death be mentioned in his obituary, unashamed.
Way Bandy’s legacy lives on within the beauty community. He influenced a generation of beauty artists and defined what it means to be an MUA. It’s been said that Way Bandy inspired the legendary 90’s makeup artist Kevyn Aucoin, another icon that changed the face of beauty and makeup as we know it today and is still considered one of the best makeup artists of the modern day.
This is just a short list of beauty influences in the LGBTQA+ community, and as times change and barriers are broken down, honoring the community’s influence on style and beauty can grow to become the norm. It is important to us, at Boca Beauty Academy, to ensure that all our students, staff, and friends enter our doors feeling safe, accepted, and free to be their best creative selves.