John Legend just announced the launch of his new skincare line.
The brand is currently still in development, but Legend has said that his products will specifically focus on meeting the needs of people with darker and melanin-rich skin.
Speaking to Fortune earlier this month, the multi-award-winning musician and philanthropist explained that lines catering directly to people of color are important for a multitude of reasons.
He noted that they prompt broader conversations within the sector concerning Eurocentric beauty standards, as well as the racial wealth gap and the fact that folks with darker skin need specialized products. Good skincare also has the power to help everyone feel positive about themselves.
“Everybody has skin, and everybody cares about their skin, and everybody cares about presenting themselves well in every situation, whether it’s, you know, family, community, or wherever they are,” said Legend. “It’s such an important part of who they are, and how they present themselves to the world, and how they feel.”
While details of the upcoming products remain to be seen, there is an industry-wide shift towards plant-based and cruelty-free ingredients and vegan certification, particularly amongst celebrity-founded brands, making it likely that this selection will be no exception.
This new line won’t be Legend’s first foray into beauty products. He was an early investor in Bevel, a brand that also focused on Black customers by meeting their shaving needs. (Bevel CEO Tristan Walker has since founded Form, a haircare brand. The former is cruelty-free.)
John Legend skincare
As per Fortune, Legend is working with Los Angeles-based A-Frame Brands to create the upcoming range. A-Frame is a holding company specifically focused on creating products for those not being catered to properly by the mainstream beauty industry.
“The entire purpose of the business is to create products for people who need them the most,” said A-Frame’s chief brand officer Martin Ekechukwu. “And we’re defining ‘people who need them the most’ as Black, Brown, Asian, and [people with disabilities] … anyone for whom there has been nothing specifically created for you, from the ground up.”
In September of last year, A-Frame partnered with tennis champion and mental health advocate Naomi Osaka to launch KINLÒ, a functional, vegan, cruelty-free skincare brand also designed for “the melanin-rich.” Osaka previously said that the lack of sun protection products, in particular, made for darker skin tones is what prompted her to found the label.
“Through my personal experience and learnings, I have found that Black, Brown, and other melanated skin-toned communities are often an after-thought in the discussion and research surrounding sun care,” she explained, “including being excluded from clinical studies on skin cancer.”
Both Legend and Osaka join a growing number of celebrities choosing to launch their own beauty brands, many of which are framed around inclusivity, sustainability, and simple ingredients. For some of the top celeb-backed launches of 2021, read on here.