How powerful is hair? It can affect a woman's attractiveness significantly up or down. Besides weight management, it's also an area that young women often screw up. Alicia Keys has a sexy face. She has nice symmetry, a great, even skin tone, and facial features that look proportional. There are plenty of promotional photos where she looks beautiful. I know these are photoshopped, but even singing the national anthem on HD television, her face looked good without the help of adobe. Her facial beauty is a great foundation for overall attractiveness. I'm not going to comment on her pear shaped figure that seems to be slipping from her control. Honestly, did you ever think Jennifer Hudson would be the thin one of the two of them? Alicia Keys screws her attractiveness up with her hairstyle selection.
Pretty glamour shot for the Maybeline ad.
Some of this stems from early in her career when the producers had her trying too hard to rep like she was from 'da streetz'. She and Kobe Bryant were in a battle for who could look more foolish trying to rep hard and appear more authentically black. This is a real fact for black public figures considering the flak RG3 just took for being perceived as a 'cornball brutha'. This was part of her marketing and packaging. Pop musicians can't just be vocal talents anymore. The expansion of television as a medium, music videos and endorsement tie ins changed that. Producers had to initially fit her into the black square. Keys is biracial (black and white) and was raised by her white mom. Using my black female coworkers' words, what momma looks like for biracial kids is how they be acting since momma ends up raising them (they are silent on Obama and have no grasp on other types of biracial pairings). Keys grew up in Hell's Kitchen, which was an Irish ethnic neighborhood during her youth, and today is well over 50% white (per NY Times census maps). She also was accepted at Columbia University after enrolling at 12 at the Performing Arts Specialty School in NYC. Not a lot of 'da streetz' soaking in. The producers applied the Mariah Carey playbook to sell her to the black audiences as authentically black (surround her with blacks in videos + sing funkier tunes in between the well crafted pop ballads). It's the Mariah Carey playbook because it feels like Carey was the first music product that the entertainment industry had to sell hard to blacks out of fear of not being black enough taking her parents and childhood into account. Similar to Carey, Keys can't dance. For Alicia Keys in the early 2000s, this also meant cornrows and braids as accessories. It diminished her attractiveness by making her look like a skull with braids attached. Bo Derek can pull off braids, and that is it.
Who the fuck do you think you're fooling?
It is a bit of a weird twist how black females like Toni Braxton, Halle Berry and Janet Jackson had plastic surgery to remove or minimize what are typical considered black features while Keys "puts on the uniform" to appear blacker. This is mostly due to target audiences. Jackson was seeking to reach all audiences and carried jealousy of Latoya Jackson's looks with her to the plastic surgeon's office. Braxton was R&B focused, but her niche was replacing Anita Baker in that adult contemporary slot that has a huge white audience. Keys was going for the younger R&B crowd. Better for young Alicia to go hard for 'da streetz'.
Good use of curls. This is the black chick for hipster white guys.
I am not saying it is only when she tries to wear her hair stereotypically black that she has a problem. Her hairstyle when she sang the national anthem was an awful "1920s flapper slicked down inspired" shitshow. She can also pull off the kinky haired look when it frames her face and keeps the focus on her facial features. When her hair hangs down framing her face and flowing with her jawline, she looks her best. When her hair is mega blown out afro style, it takes the focus off of her face and makes her face look tiny. When she wears her hair tight or slicked back, she doesn't look as good. In the back of your mind, there might a tiny, nagging feeling that she resembles a tan Justin Bieber (especially at the Grammys). If she doesn't look as good in the facial beauty department, her widening pear shape and rising weight in general will not help. She has a great voice, but this is purely an aesthetics post. Knock it off Alicia because your weight is rising and the wall is approaching.
Cross posted at Judgement of Paris