Once upon a time models only walked runways in cornrows and natural hair when designers wanted to make a deliberate statement with their show, often resulting in tense conversations around cultural appropriation. Today, we’re seeing more Black models walking generally, and walking in natural hair. This season actress and host Keke Palmer joined those models, taking the Christian Cowan spring/summer 2020 runway show in jumbo cornrows and vibrant red lips.
Two weeks ago at an Olay event Palmer announced that she would be walking the runway, her very first time being part of New York Fashion Week in this capacity. She didn’t give up any info about the looks that we could expect to see, though her hairstylist Ann Jones said that it would be special.
Backstage was like a beauty blitz, with the MAC cosmetics team on makeup, Dashing Diva hooking up the models’ nails, Olay keeping skin moisturized, and Bumble and bumble. getting hair runway ready. While the beauty looks weren’t the most dramatic—red lips and winged liner were the main standouts—some face glitter made its way onto the runway for a couple of girls. Many of the models also walked with just clean flawless skin and glossy lips, reminding us that even the simplest looking looks take time and detailed attention.