With a new season of the ballroom drama set to start filming in 2020 and her finishing up in the musical Little Shop Of Horrors, the Black transgender actress is now the new face of Olay Body.
Over the weekend, the New Jersey native announced a new partnership with Olay Body, where she will serve as one of the brand’s coveted ambassadors for their “14 Day Skin Transformation” campaign.
“WOW! TODAY IS FINALLY THE DAY… I’m down here in Washington D.C. Speaking on the importance of diversity, inclusion and equality! I am feeling all types of confident for my speech at the Diversity Summit thanks to my friends at @Olay Body. This is officially my first ever beauty campaign — I am so thankful to have the opportunity to show other trans women of color everywhere that they are seen and that they are worthy,” she wrote on Instagram on Saturday.
During the next two weeks, she will post on social media how her skin has will transform over time. Of course, she looks fresh and fab:
Mj recently told The Cut that she couldn’t believe she was chosen for such a high-profile gig.
“When they called me, I screamed on the phone, because Olay is one of the leading forces in beauty. I was like ‘oh my god, am I really being considered for this, am I worthy?”
Yet, she gets how important this is, adding, “As a woman, as a black or Latina or trans woman, we have to constantly give words of affirmation to ourselves. It’s just hard for us. I’m just focusing on amplifying my voice, trying to get it out there as much as possible.”
Here’s what we definitely know: Mj is more than worthy. She is gorgeous, inside and out, and her embodiment as Blanca on Pose literally makes you want to be a better person. Mj is joy personified. But most importantly, campaigns like this one, with Mj at the center matters.
As I’ve written before, it’s no secret that we live in a transphobic world that has tried to push trans women into the shadows and use violence and discrimination to deny them the right to exist and their womanhood. That’s got to change. And no, this Olay Body partnership will not eradicate that oppression, but as affirming representation like this campaign becomes the norm, the more transgender women can come into the light, be celebrated for the women they are and help raise awareness around the issues that they face.
Visibility is the answer and this is a step in the right direction. Because remember: Like Black cis women in America, Black trans women are also beautiful, crucial to our community and contribute daily to our collective liberation.
My hope is that more beauty brands get with the program because it’s been time for our trans sistas to be in the spotlight.