Chances are if you grew up during the nineties, you had this week’s throwback blasting through your casette player during personal moments of both heartbreak and triumph. With soul-quaking lyrics sung over a melodic piano and hard hitting drums, Hip-Hop Soul was born, and Mary J. Blige is still the reigning queen of this genre.
Just as noteworthy as her music is her sense of style. From fitted caps and baseball jerseys to couture gowns on red carpets, MJB has never shied away from serving a look to get the people talking.
The nineties were a time of bold prints and lots of urban flair when it came to Blige. Baseball jerseys, oversized athletic jackets were a part of her steeze, as her style reflected that of many of the girls from the Bronx during this era. And who can forget those iconic “Not Gon’ Cry” sunglasses? MJB began to experiment with her style even further, especially during red carpet appearances. Outfits gilded in gold paisley, baroque prints and vivid fur coats draped over sparkly gowns became the norm whenever Blige hit the carpet.
Eventually, the silhouettes of her outfits became more streamlined. More column dresses featuring halters or asymmetry at the shoulders or sleeves came into play as Mary became more fashion forward. Mary also loves to switch things up when the occasion doesn’t call for a floor length gown. She kills it in separates, especially in pieces that feature geometric prints. Though she’s been in the game for almost thirty years, there really is no stopping Mary as the slay is still consistent. Column dresses are still her favorite silhouette to consider, but these days, she may be inclined to show a little leg, evidenced by her saucy La Perla gown worn at this year’s Met Gala. From Reem Acra to Gucci and J. Mendel, and with Jason Bolden as her style architect, how can she do wrong?
So here’s to Mary J. Blige, a pioneer of the music world who defined the genre of Hip-Hop Soul, a beacon of hope to women who struggle to keep a positive outlook on life, and a style icon with looks to last a lifetime.
What do you think of Mary’s style?