A Look Into How Black Culture Influenced Nail Trends

A Look Into How Black Culture Influenced Nail Trends

Feb 21 , 2021



It goes without saying that “the Culture influences everything.” Among the many contributions to fashion and trends is the emergence and popularity of acrylic nails and nail art. Earlier reports can date the introduction of acrylic nails as we know them back to 1954. And while they have advanced, something that remains constant is black influence over it’s rise in mainstream acceptance by iconic and recognizable talents across sports, film, music and arts. Here are some of the most iconic and BLACK moments in nails.

Sports: Florence Griffith-Joyner (Flo Jo) Olympic Record Debut

In the 1988 Summer U.S. Olympics track and field category, Flo Jo earned the top place in the event by breaking the 100 meters world record three times and stamped herself in the record books (a record that is still held by her today). Often recognized for her nail art while being dubbed “The fastest woman in the world.”

Music: Lil Kim’s Iconic Money Nails Archived into the Modern Museum of Art 

Music has always been held in high regards for its ability to influence and spark trends. Well before today’s top music talents such as Cardi B and Saweetie became household names for the top nail trends and long before their arrival were Diana Ross and Donna Summer of the 70s disco era knocking down the door. Their influence and mainstream showcase helped propel Rapper Lil Kim’s infamous money nails right into the Museum of Modern Art as a historical art. 

Fashion: Breaking Industry Barriers through Nail Art

Among the hardest doors to break is the fashion industry. There are many first when we dive into black nail art trends, and among those worth noting is, Donyale Luna, as the first Black woman to cover Vogue, in Twen Magazine in 1966 with acrylic nails. 

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