Essence Magazine blessed us with another fabulous event this past April called the Essence Beauty Carnival Tour. If you missed it, have no fear because the tour continues this weekend at Essence Music Festival in New Orleans, Louisiana.
I believe, this is the first of it’s kind for the publication, so I was front row and center with my homegirl Jessica at Pier 36 in New York City.
There were two lines: one for general admission and the other for VIPs. There was a significant price difference between the two, so we bought the general admission tickets. VIP gave you perks such as access to a private area called “The Beauty Bungalow” and an Essence tote bag with products, to name a few.
We walked right in when the doors opened and were visually struck by the theme, “Bring the Bold!”. An inviting array of colorful information stations, activations, a grand stage and brands/shops were from wall to wall (video below).
The information stations were amazing because they wrapped in a nutshell the evolution of black hair and beauty. I personally could not get enough of the “Wigs & Weaves” station. The collection of paint brush hair (picture below) shows the versatility of a black woman’s crown. From curly to straight to red to black. I change my hair every two months so this is probably why I liked it so much.
Every activation station was a fun photo opportunity. The ‘Glam Room’ was my favorite because everything was laid out from combs, to lip gloss, to a flat iron – basically everything a woman needs to get ready. I didn’t know what to grab before taking the picture and realized, let me do what every black woman can relate to – itch their scalp with a tail comb (pretend lol). We all know that good feeling it brings after a long day…
Another activation had a carnival theme that took a boomerang and a few others. Overall, there were about 3-4 other areas where you could take photos.
And the shops! Now, I have to say, they had the right amount of vendors. It wasn’t overcrowded and you didn’t have to wait on long lines. I bought a few items (posts to come!), but one of my favorite’s was the card game, “Trading Races“. As stated on their website, each player “selects a card from their hand that reflects a higher level of blackness and plays their card. As a group, players must come to a consensus on which card is blacker. Whoever played the winning card, wins the book.” (Video of us playing below).
The main stage had a series of events including competitions, sit-down interviews, informational chats and performances.
There was so much more, for instance, the Aveeno station, where you received a mini-consultation, a small bag of products and a boomerang photo. I saw a few celebrities/influencers such as fashion model and entrepreneur Iman, singer Ciara, fashion designer Dapper Dan, influencer Megz (ULoveMegz) and Gizelle Bryant from The Real Housewives of Potomac. They also had food trucks outside.
Will you attend next year?
Most definitely! But this time, the goal is to experience it at Essence Fest in New Orleans.
Check out videos and photos from the event on their website here.