24 Times Janet Jackson Gave Us Major Beauty Inspo


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Janet Jackson could teach a course on range if she wanted to. Throughout her musical career, the Indiana-born entertainer has blessed us with a versatile portfolio of music: from the electric sounds on Control– her 1986 album that reminded everyone she’s all grown up– to the sultry vocals and, as Apple Music eloquently put it, “sex-positive” lyrics on janet. in 1993.

But one can’t mention Ms. Damita Jo without discussing her next-level dance moves that makes you want to get up and groove. This includes music videos like “Rhythm Nation” or her “Would You Mind” live in Hawaii performance that would later inspire the likes of Teyana Taylor and more. That said, it’s a no brainer why she’s won countless awards– think: Billboard, MTV, several Grammy’s, and more– over the years.

And with each new era of music, Jackson has also blessed us with trendsetting beauty looks that have proven to forever have a spot on our mood boards. For example, her fiery red curls during her “Velvet Rope” era and chestnut “Poetic Justice” box braids throughout the early ’90s will always be timeless. With that, Jackson not only reminds us that beauty is a powerful self-expression tool, but also that Black women are, and forever will be, the blueprint.

Up next, catch Jackson performing at the 2024 ESSENCE Festival of Culture. Until then, and in honor of her birthday today, below, take a look back at 24 times Janet Jackson gave us major beauty inspiration over the years .

Portrait session, 1984

Two years after releasing her debut solo album, Janet Jackson, the singer poses for a portrait session in 1984 clad in red lips, smoky liner, bangs, and tousled blowout.

24 Times Janet Jackson Gave Us Major Beauty Inspo
LOS ANGELES – 1984: Singer Janet Jackson poses for a portrait in 1984 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Harry Langdon/Getty Images)

Portrait session, 1986

And speaking of her first album, this portrait feels like an ode to that cover: slicked-back strands, fuchsia lips, and flower-adorned blushy cheeks.

24 Times Janet Jackson Gave Us Major Beauty Inspo
LOS ANGELES – 1986: Singer Janet Jackson poses for a portrait in 1986 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Harry Langdon/Getty Images)

Going platinum, 1989

The entertainer closed out the decade with a bang. To receive her platinum plaques for “Rhythm Nation” and “Miss You Much” she rocked a bold red lip, a sporty ponytail tucked into a hat, and the iconic key hoop.

24 Times Janet Jackson Gave Us Major Beauty Inspo
Singer Janet Jackson attends the presentation of platinum records for her album “Janet Jackson’s Rhythm Nation 1814” and two singles “Miss You Much” and “Rhythm Nation” on December 8, 1989 at A&M Records in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images)

Billboard Music Awards, 1990

She brought the red lipstick into the nineties as well. For the Billboard Music Awards, for example, she paired it with winged liner, bangs and a messy-cute updo.

24 Times Janet Jackson Gave Us Major Beauty Inspo
SANTA MONICA, CA – NOVEMBER 26: Singer Janet Jackson attends the First Annual Billboard Music Awards on November 26, 1990 at The Barker Hangar, Santa Monica Air Center in Santa Monica, California. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images)

Soul Train Music Awards, 1992

For Jackson, the Soul Train Awards were all about the liner: both on the pout and around the eyes. Pin curls and natural nails softened harsh lines, while large hoops and brimmed hat added an effortless cool girl element.

24 Times Janet Jackson Gave Us Major Beauty Inspo
LOS ANGELES – MARCH 10: Singer Janet Jackson attends the Sixth Annual Soul Train Music Awards on March 10, 1992 at Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images)

“White Men Can’t Jump” premiere, 1992

Her signature makeup look seemed to carry her through the early nineties while she changed up the hair for each outing. For this premiere, she wore the infamous Poetic Justice braids that we all know and love.

24 Times Janet Jackson Gave Us Major Beauty Inspo
WESTWOOD, CA – MARCH 23: Singer Janet Jackson attends the “White Men Can’t Jump” Westwood Premiere on March 23, 1992 at Avco Center Cinemas in Westwood, California. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images)

GRAMMY Awards, 1993

Instead of a red lip, she opted for a neutral pink one to go with her jumbo braids pulled half-up into an elegant white scarf.

24 Times Janet Jackson Gave Us Major Beauty Inspo
Janet Jackson (Photo by Kevin Mazur/WireImage)

“Janet” album celebration, 1994

On the note of half-updos, for her sold-out concert and Janet album celebration, she turned heads with auburn curls adorned by a scrunchy and chestnut lips. Tell us it was the nineties without telling us…

24 Times Janet Jackson Gave Us Major Beauty Inspo
CULVER CITY, CA – APRIL 7: Singer Janet Jackson attends the Party for Janet Jackson’s Sold-Out Concert Tour and Plaque Presentation for 10 Million Copies of “Janet” Album on April 7, 1994 at Sony Pictures Studios in Culver City, California. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images)

MTV Video Music Awards, 1995

It’s the simplicity of this look that makes it oh so iconic. Jackson’s pixie cut framed her peachy cheeks, wispy lashes, and grey-ish shadow perfectly. Meanwhile, her ab game continues to inspire us all.

24 Times Janet Jackson Gave Us Major Beauty Inspo
NEW YORK CITY – SEPTEMBER 7: Singer Janet Jackson attends the 12th Annual MTV Video Music Awards on September 7, 1995 at Radio City Music Hall in New York City. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images)

Des O’Connor Show, 1997

This look needs no introduction. The fiery strands let you know this was Jackson entering her “Velvet Rope” era. She graced the Des O’Connor show with four curly space buns, red brows, septum ring, and a smile. The result? A love letter to the alternative Black girl inside of all of us.

24 Times Janet Jackson Gave Us Major Beauty Inspo
Janet Jackson interview on Des O’Connor Show, London, 2nd December, 1997. (Photo by Jo Hale/Redferns)

Planet Groove interview, 1998

As she inched towards the early aughts, Jackson slowly began to phase out of the red tresses. But she held on, thanks to crimson-struck bangs, for her Planet Groove interview in 1998.

24 Times Janet Jackson Gave Us Major Beauty Inspo
MALIBU, CALIFORNIA – MARCH 18 : Janet Jackson at home during a pause in interview by Jamaican-born Canadian TV host Rachel Stuart, March 18, 1998 in Malibu, California, (Photo by Bob Riha, Jr./Getty Images)

Source Hip-Hop Awards, 1999

A honey-dipped updo is always a good idea. Jackson decided to rock hers with monochromatic makeup: pink lady apple hues across the lids, cheeks, and lips did the trick.

24 Times Janet Jackson Gave Us Major Beauty Inspo
08/18/99. Hollywood, CA. Janet Jackson attends the “Source Hip-Hop awards” Picture by DAN CALLISTER Online USA inc.

AIDS Gala, 1999

The next time you need braid inspo, look no further than here. Play with lengths and opt into an amber braided bob like Jackson did in 1999. To bring it all together, she decided on pink cheeks and lips.

24 Times Janet Jackson Gave Us Major Beauty Inspo
Janet Jackson during 11th Annual AIDS Project Los Angeles “Commitment to Life” Gala at Universal Amphitheatre in Universal City, California, United States. (Photo by SGranitz/WireImage)

MTV Movie Awards, 2000

Sleek is an understatement. When in doubt, silk press it out. To add an edgy element, line your eyes and swipe on a gold-flecked gloss like Jackson did for the MTV Awards in 2000.

24 Times Janet Jackson Gave Us Major Beauty Inspo
Singer Janet Jackson attends the Ninth Annual MTV Movie Awards on June 3, 2000 at Sony Pictures Studios in Culver City, California. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images)

Billboard Music Awards, 2001

Sometimes more is more. At least it was when Jackson decided to rock choppy waves with dirty blonde streaks, pomegranate gloss, and violet shadow for the Billboard Music Awards in 2001.

24 Times Janet Jackson Gave Us Major Beauty Inspo
Janet Jackson at the Billboard Music Awards Arrivals. (Photo by Denise Truscello/WireImage)

BET Awards, 2002

Whatever happened to the white liner trend of the early 2000s? Jackson’s eye look, next to rose gold makeup and chestnut layers, give us all the nostalgic vibes.

24 Times Janet Jackson Gave Us Major Beauty Inspo
Presenter Janet Jackson during The 2nd Annual BET Awards – Gallery at The Kodak Theater in Hollywood, California, United States. (Photo by L. Cohen/WireImage)

TAO first anniversary party, 2006

Classic, bronzy makeup, slicked back strands tucked under a hooded dress, and dark brown nails for fall? Noted!

24 Times Janet Jackson Gave Us Major Beauty Inspo
Janet Jackson during TAO Las Vegas First Anniversary Weekend – Janet Jackson Album Release Party – Red Carpet Arrivals at The Venetian Resort Hotel Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada, United States. (Photo by Bruce Gifford/FilmMagic)

U.S. Open, 2007

Jackson has always known how to turn her off days into a statement, too. She felt like waist-length, goddess-like strands tucked under a cap was a good idea for the 2007 U.S. Open. And we agree.

24 Times Janet Jackson Gave Us Major Beauty Inspo
NEW YORK – AUGUST 27: Singer Janet Jackson looks on during a tribute to Althea Gibson as part of the opening ceremonies for the 2007 U.S. Open at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on August 27, 2007 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)

Cannes Film Festival, 2012

For the Cannes Film Festival, Ms. Jackson brought the chic factor with swept back hair, lashes, and pumpkin-stained cheeks.

24 Times Janet Jackson Gave Us Major Beauty Inspo
CAP D’ANTIBES, FRANCE – MAY 24: Janet Jackson arrives at the 2012 amfAR’s Cinema Against AIDS during the 65th Annual Cannes Film Festival at Hotel Du Cap on May 24, 2012 in Cap D’Antibes, France. (Photo by Andreas Rentz/Getty Images)

Rock & Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony, 2019

Jackson embodied Rock & Roll at the Hall of Fame induction in 2007, thanks to highlighter on the nose, bold brows, and even bolder curls.

24 Times Janet Jackson Gave Us Major Beauty Inspo
NEW YORK, NEW YORK – MARCH 29: Inductee Janet Jackson attends the 2019 Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame Induction Ceremony at Barclays Center on March 29, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images For The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame)

Rock & Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony, 2022

The following year, onyx texture was swept up and to the side while her lids were traced in lavender hues.

24 Times Janet Jackson Gave Us Major Beauty Inspo
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – NOVEMBER 05: Janet Jackson attends the 37th Annual Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame Induction Ceremony at Microsoft Theater on November 05, 2022 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/WireImage)

Louis Vuitton fashion show, 2022

The baby hairs were giving, honey. Artful curls framed icy lids and a deep berry pout at the Louis Vuitton fashion show in 2022.

24 Times Janet Jackson Gave Us Major Beauty Inspo
PARIS, FRANCE – OCTOBER 04: (EDITORIAL USE ONLY – For Non-Editorial use please seek approval from Fashion House) Janet Jackson attends the Louis Vuitton Womenswear Spring/Summer 2023 show as part of Paris Fashion Week on October 04, 2022 in Paris, France. (Photo by Marc Piasecki/WireImage)

Thom Browne fashion show, 2022

Major fringe was found front row at Thom Browne’s fashion show in 2022. And we’re not just talking about Anna’s bangs either.

24 Times Janet Jackson Gave Us Major Beauty Inspo
PARIS, FRANCE – OCTOBER 03: (EDITORIAL USE ONLY – For Non-Editorial use please seek approval from Fashion House) Anna Wintour, Janet Jackson and Doja Cat attend the Thom Browne Womenswear Spring/Summer 2023 show as part of Paris Fashion Week on October 03, 2022 in Paris, France. (Photo by Pierre Suu/Getty Images)

Thom Browne fashion show, 2024

Jackson sported sleek pigtails, coral blush, and chocolate gloss to Thom Browne’s fashion show earlier this year. A nod to the beauty of being playful and fun at any age.

24 Times Janet Jackson Gave Us Major Beauty Inspo
NEW YORK, NEW YORK – FEBRUARY 14: Janet Jackson attends the Thom Browne fashion show during New York Fashion Week at The Shed on February 14, 2024 in New York City. (Photo by Raymond Hall/GC Images)





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