Deep dive

Rappers are selling nail polish and this is just the beginning

Alina Amin


Background     Fashion     

The beginning

What do Machine Gun Kelly, Lil Yachty and Tyler, The Creator have in common? Yes, exactly. The all launched their own nail polish brand. Rappers selling and – especially – wearing nail polish has become the new black. It’s like, if you want to show your fans and the world that you are a fashion forward thinker, just paint on some blue polish and you’re good to go.

It’s the next step to the genderless mainstream fashion movement that has started to blossom in the recent years. And – again – Hiphop, or rather, fashion savvy rappers, are taking part in that progression. Whether it’s A$AP Rocky, Jaden Smith, or Young Thug: They all occasionally wear pieces that traditionally fall into the category of women’s wear.

Let’s defy somy

Kid Cudi went to the CFDA Fashion Awards in a custom bridal gown – his second homage to the late Kurt Cobain this year. Of course his outfit made headlines. After all, men wearing dresses is still considered to be rather risqué. But, just like everything else, there are changes going on in the spheres of heteronormative fashion.

The music industry has had its fair share of gender-norm-defying icons. Prince, Jimi Hendrix or David Bowie – they all chose to wear clothes that were out of the norm of traditional men’s wear. Since then, unisex fashion – even if not mainstream – has been a thing that exists in the minds of modern consumers.

Design-icons like Yohji Yamamoto pushed the idea of unisex clothes even further with his popularity rising in the 80s. Since then, celebs have been giving genderless fashion moments.

once and for all

So, fighting against traditional dressing isn’t something new. What does Hiphop, or rather Hiphop’s icons add to this movement?

Hiphop of all music genres –  a genre that is traditionally considered to be hyper-masculine – currently seems to be on the forefront of that movement. With the heavy influence that Hiphop has on Gen-Z and Gen-Z has on the general progression of trends, it’s only getting better from here.

While putting on nail polish and dresses on as a man always had a touch of *scene* and being *niche*, it’s now a widespread trend. That makes it less innovative but also more accepted in society. Which means that genderless fashion, jewelry and make-up could take over the industry for good.

What does that mean for brands? It’s time to take that final step out of your box.