Cast your mind back four years, shoe extraordinaire Christian Louboutin launched the now iconic “Nudes For All Collection”. Five shades of nude to suit five different skin tones. Louboutin famously campaigned for recognition of black skin on the ‘Nude” colour spectrum and took matters further into his own hands with the launch of his Solasofia ballet pump and the addition of another two shades of Nude taking the total up to seven.
That’s just four years ago. Just four short years black women struggled to find a simple “Nude” shoe to compliment an outfit, simply because these are mass produced with white skin in mind. Even now in 2017 it’s an uphill battle to get cosmetic companies, lingerie manufacturers and luxury shoe brands to recognise that black women buy fashion. That black women are unfairly represented throughout the industry. Singer Jamelia produced a documentary about her difficulties in finding makeup to suit her black skin which made company executives at Boots and Superdrug squirm when they realised they had no suitable offering for black skin.
Christian Louboutin is famed for his “Nude is not a colour; it’s a concept” philosophy towards his shoe design and as such, has expanded his “Nudes” collection and introduced two high heeled sandals; the Christeriva and the Cherrysandal. Both are available in all seven shades that make up the Louboutin “Nude” spectrum and with wedding season in full flow, they couldn’t have arrived at a better time. Obviously they carry a hefty pricetag (The Christeriva is £595 and the Cherrysandal is £635) something we’ve come to expect from Louboutin and those covetable red soles. But in this case, when there are high street or cheaper designer alternatives for white women, it’s a bitter pill to swallow for black women who don’t have as many options and who might be priced out.
Huge kudos to Louboutin for spearheading the “Nudes For All” campaign, it’s a strong move; one which should have been matched by now. But where are the high street collections?? Over to you Topshop, River Island and Office…