To Want To Look Like Me

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Earlier this month, the moment in the above picture happened on the Queen Latifah show. Janelle Monae got a chance to surprise a 10-year-old fan who really looks up to her. The fan was very surprised, but it was Janelle who became overwhelmed with emotion. Her statement, “Never in a million years did I think that I would see a young black girl wanting to look like me,” was so touching and profound. First, it spoke to her personal journey as an artist. Janelle has always placed her humble beginnings at the forefront of her image and artistry. There was so much genuineness in her realization that she is actually someone that a young girl wants to be, was so beautiful.

Her statement also meant a lot on a societal level. Though media images have come a long way, the “classic” ideas of beauty are still very prevalent. Not to mention the hyper sexualized portrayal of women in general. It’s so refreshing to have an image like Janelle to be proud of. Today, we have more images of strong and successful black and brown women to look up to than we have in the past. Seeing more of these images of women who look like us, being comfortable being themselves has a lot to do with how comfortable we feel being OURselves.  The emotion that poured from Janelle’s realization that the person she is is someone that little black and brown girls all over the world aspire to be, was beautiful to watch. I appreciate Janelle and women like her, who help make it okay to want to look like me. I cried, of course, but what’s new?

I didn’t really have much to say about this besides that it was absolutely beautiful. You can watch the full clip here >> Janelle Monae on Queen Latifah





Imani Williams is a staff columnist for The Mixx Magazine from Louisville, KY. She is a Clark Atlanta University graduate with a degree in Communication and a passion for people. Her goal is to provide meaningful commentary and positive images on Black Love, Literature, Hair & Culture. Imani currently moonlights as Beyoncé.