The announcement of People Magazine’s Most Beautiful person of 2014 has sparked much conversation surrounding the definition of beauty in America. The choice of Lupita Nyong'o is a historical move for People that has caused many to applaud the choice—and some to question the decision. Nevertheless, women of color around the world are applauding, and Lupita Nyong’o is shattering stereotypes and having the time of her life.
Lupita’s stunning red carpet appearance and recent Oscar win for best supporting actress in "12 Years a Slave" made national and international headlines, and her popularity is soaring an ever-increasing. Amidst criticism, naysayers, and haters, she recently landed a coveted contract with luxury beauty product brand Lancome Paris. One critic has repeatedly and openly criticized the dark-skinned beauty, but Lupita took the high road and let her talent and beauty do the talking.
The actress and spokes model has a full plate and a busy schedule, and the demand for her continues to rise. Lupita also signed with the elite Creative Artist Agency (CAA). According to the Hollywood Reporter, ““At CAA, Nyong’o will be repped by a team led by Hylda Queally, who also reps Jessica Chastain, Marion Cotillard, Cate Blanchett, Kate Winslet, Berenice Bejo and Noomi Rapace.”
The definition of beauty has certainly evolved, and Lupita told People that while growing up, she thought the definition of beauty meant “light skin and long, flowing, straight hair.” She told a captive crowd her emotional story at the Essence magazine Black Women in Hollywood luncheon that she ‘used to pray to God each night for lighter skin’ and ‘awaken to disappointment’ of the same dark skin.
Today, she has become the epitome of beauty. During her emotional Oscar’s speech she stated, “When I look down at this golden statue, may it remind me and every little child that no matter where you’re from, your dreams are valid.”
Congratulations to Lupita for daring to dream and shattering stereotypes.