Happy Birthday SZA! The R&B Singer’s Best Barrier Breaking Beauty Moments

Shop Talk: SZA's biggest beauty moments

By: Akili King

Photos courtesy of SZA's Instagram

Whether it’s her voluminous, waist-grazing hair that continuously takes different shapes and colors, her flawlessly freckled skin, or her tomboy-meets-sexy style, we can all agree that R&B sensation, SZA, née Solana Rowe, is a statement-making beauty. The new-wave classic for a generation of risk takers. This year was a big one for the New Jersey native: dropping her relatable and honest hit album, Ctrl that seems to be helping all of the “20-somethings” through their rough patches; releasing a string of dope visuals; touring; and slaying red carpet after red carpet. But then again, SZA’s looks over the years have constantly broken barriers, pushing back on the stereotypical idea of what “sexiness” should look like. By showing confidence in so many different looks—from tomboy to glam--she continues to inspire so many black women to celebrate themselves in all their many forms. With her 27th birthday upon us, it only seems right that we celebrate the singer by looking back at some of our favorite “supermodel’s” stand-out beauty moments.


BEHIND THE LOOK: Whether SZA is strutting down a forest path in platform black pumps, a baby-tee and a befeathered shall in the hyper-surreal visuals for “Supermodel”, or rocking playful, high-pony pigtails with black lingerie and sparkly fishnet pants in “Love Galore”, SZA manages to be both sensual and angelic all at once. Exuding confidence as she honors every inch of her curves, the singer inspires her fans to celebrate themselves in their own unique ways. (Brb… on my way to purchase some stripper heels and butterfly clips!)


BEHIND THE LOOK: SZA first went red in 2015 which marked a big turning point in her career-- from getting recognized by Vogue, to playing a set at Afropunk. Fast forward to 2017, and we see SZA with red hair again in the music video for hit song “What Lovers Do” with Maroon 5, and also along stops of her Ctrl tour. Red hair seems to be SZA’s go-to look when she’s hoping to change things up, adding a fiery element to her otherwise signature cozy chic style. Basically, if you see SZA with red hair in the coming years, best believe some fire is on the way.


BEHIND THE LOOK: Seemingly having mastered the art of subtlety when it comes to dyeing her hair, every shade SZA tries never seems to overpower or distract from her natural beauty. The strawberry undertones pop with SZA’s skin tone, pushing back on the idea that black girls can’t rock blonde, when in fact, many black women are born with naturally blonde hair and lighter undertones. SZA paves the way for women of color to express themselves, proving we can rock any shade we want and do it well! No matter how light or dark; whether natural or not.


BEHIND THE LOOK: SZA truly owned these traditional Ethiopian fulani habesha box braids. Whether she’s in her freakum dress or wearing a dadhat, we really see SZA’s true chameleon come out with this style.


BEHIND THE LOOK: Those baby hairs!


BEHIND THE LOOK: SZA’s iconic dog-walking looks are the perfect representation of her cozy and adorable style. From overalls, to baseball hats and plaid pants, to track pants with fuzzy loafers-- SZA somehow pulls it all off and once more shows us that pulling “a look” is all about having fun and adding your own spin onto something that otherwise might seem “simple”. (Having a cute pooch helps too).


BEHIND THE LOOK: SZA, for lack of better words, slayed this past award season: from Black Girls Rock, the BET Awards, to the VMA’s, this lady came ready to stop the show. Opposed to your typical ball gown, SZA came rocking a 90’s- inspired jean dress with strappy heels showing that comfort can also be sophisticated and stimulating. And, of course, only SZA can make sparkly knee-high boots and an oversized sweatshirt look sexy together.


BEHIND THE LOOK: As of late, we’ve seen SZA in more and more sleek fits. All black, mesh, & Doc Martens. Are these the signs of new videos coming soon--and with it a new look? We honestly did not think SZA’s year could get any better, but she somehow manages to pleasantly surprise us at every turn. Guess we’ll just have to wait and see what she blesses us with next.

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