No matter how many Grammys you get nominated for or how much fame one accumulates, when you’re a person of color, you can still be mistaken for any ol’ miscreant by someone who chooses to see you in that way.
This was singer SZA‘s experience this week. The 28-year-old, born Solána Imani Rowe, shared on Twitter on Tuesday night that security was called on her when she visited a Sephora in Calabasas (LA County). The city is known as the home of the stars, including the Kardashians and Drake.
SZA was just trying to shop there. An employee she dubbed “Sandy Sephora” sicced security guards on her when she thought the singer was stealing. SZA said they all “had a long talk” after she was confronted while trying to “cop her fenty in peace.”
Ironically, before the fame, the star used to work at Sephora, helping customers get their skin together.
“I used to work in the skin-care department [at Sephora], so I know for a fact that everyone’s skin is different,” she said in 2018 to Refinery29.
She also told ELLE last year that while working there, she learned a lot. For instance, she found that the more expensive and “organic” the product, the more often it wreaked havoc on people’s skin.
“Basically, the most valuable thing I learned is that a lot of ‘organic’ things are bad for your skin! Just because a product is ‘natural’ or ‘vegan’ doesn’t mean you won’t break out. There are so many natural and non-natural irritants, and some chemicals are actually nice to your skin, and some are hella chemical-y and mess up your complexion. It’s the same thing with price. Some of the biggest skin issues I’d see were from really expensive brands that I can’t bash, because they’ll hate me forever. [Laughing.] But the bottom line is, most skin doesn’t need tons of stuff on it. Keep it as simple as you can, and use what you like, even if it’s not trendy. If it works for you, don’t apologize for it.”
Now she’s learned from her experience at Sephora that if she does some shopping in Calabasas again, she may or may not have to deal with racial profiling. Welcome back to the struggle, sis.