Today we celebrate the birthday of arguably one of the most dynamic musical icons of our time. Prince Rogers Nelson, known to us as simply Prince, was a trailblazer and pioneer, not only in music, but in beauty and fashion. With his refusal to be boxed into societal norms and notions of masculinity, he redefined for many what a man looks like. Though many questioned his sexuality as a result of his beauty and fashion choices, even in a time where long hair, eyeliner and nail polish was typical wear for musicians (and even though he was always surrounded by a bevy of gorgeous women, many of which he was rumored to have bedded), he forged on, staying true to his aesthetic and definition of beauty and gender.
Not subscribing to gender norms made him a hero to generations that will never know what it is to see Prince perform live, but who understand the importance of living in one’s truth, and who also benefit from the boldness of his choices. So on the day that he entered the world, we salute Prince and look at just a handful of the times (because really we could go on and on) that he reminded us that makeup and hair products are not just for the ladies. He constantly gave us looks that we treasured like diamonds and pearls. And on some occasions, put yours, your mama’s, and your sister’s blowouts to shame.
50th Annual Grammy Awards
Prince was bringing back the pompadour years before it became trendy with Hollywood ladies.
LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 10: Musician Prince presents the Best Female R&B Performance award during the 50th annual Grammy awards held at the Staples Center on February 10, 2008 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
BBC Radio in London
Cara Delevingne's eyebrows ain't got nothing on these full bushes.
Musician Prince arriving at the BBC Radio 1 studios, London, April 1st 1987. (Photo by Dave Hogan/Getty Images)
Super Bowl XLI Half Time Show
He reminded us that the show goes on rain or shine, and that a cute scarf can make a look work.
Prince during Super Bowl XLI - Indianapolis Colts vs Chicago Bears - Half Time Show at Dolphins Stadium in Miami, Florida, United States. (Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic, Inc)
38th Annual NAACP Image Awards
The artist was constantly showing your auntie and her friends how to update that short cut.
LOS ANGELES, CA - MARCH 02: Musician Prince accepts the award for "Outstanding Male Artist" onstage during the 38th annual NAACP Image Awards held at the Shrine Auditorium on March 2, 2007 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Vince Bucci/Getty Images)
Performing At Wembley Arena In London
Sweating out his blowout, sweating out his press, and still fresher than you.
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - JULY 11: Prince performs on stage at Wembley Arena on his 'Nude' tour on July 11th, 1990 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Pete Still/Redferns)
2015 American Music Awards
He hit the carpet with a full beat and full 'fro to complement his royal ensemble.
LOS ANGELES, CA - NOVEMBER 22: Musician Prince speaks onstage during the 2015 American Music Awards at Microsoft Theater on November 22, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
In Rotterdam With Sheila E. and Cat
Prince and his lady entourage were giving us #squadgoals before it was a hashtag.
ROTTERDAM, NETHERLANDS - AUGUST 17: Prince after soundcheck, Feyenoord Stadium practice field, Netherlands on August 17, 1988 in Rotterdam, Netherlands. (Photo by FG/Bauer-Griffin/Getty Images) 170612F1
31st Annual People's Choice Awards
He also made skin envy officially a thing with his dewy flawless face.
Manuela Testolini and Prince during 31st Annual People's Choice Awards - Backstage and Audience at Pasadena Civic Auditorium in Pasadena, CA, United States. (Photo by KMazur/WireImage)
Performing In Los Angeles
Proving that the right hold spray can mean everything for your curls holding up.
INGLEWOOD, CA - FEBRUARY 19: Prince performs live at the Fabulous Forum on February 19, 1985 in Inglewood, California. (Photo by Michael Montfort/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)
2013 Billboard Music Awards
It warmed our hearts to see him looking beautiful and happy in a TWA and winged eyeliner.
LAS VEGAS, NV - MAY 19: Musician Prince performs onstage during the 2013 Billboard Music Awards at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on May 19, 2013 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/WireImage)
77th Annual Academy Awards
His edges were so perfectly naturally laid in a way that even the best edge control can't achieve.
HOLLYWOOD - FEBRUARY 27: Singer Prince and Manuela Testolini arrive at the 77th Annual Academy Awards at the Kodak Theater on February 27, 2005 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Carlo Allegri/Getty Images)
2011 MusiCares Person Of The Year Tribute To Barbra Streisand
Prince showed us that a light beat can go a long way.
LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 11: Prince speaks onstage at 2011 MusiCares Person of the Year Tribute to Barbra Streisand at Los Angeles Convention Center on February 11, 2011 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/WireImage)
Performing At Wembley
With that wind-in-the-hair blowout that is a concert go-to for today's biggest pop stars.
American pop star Prince performing at Wembley, London, 22nd August 1990. (Photo by Graham Wiltshire/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)