Karyn Washington, founder of influential self-esteem projects for women of color, including For Brown Girls and the Dark Skin, Red Lips Project has died at 22. The young woman reportedly took her own life.
Karyn launched the Dark Skin, Red Lips Project to display the beauty in women with darker complexions wearing red lipstick, after reading Harlem rapper A$AP Rocky’s comments during an interview that sun-kissed women of color should stay away from shades reserved for fair-skinned women. The rapper’s notion was quickly shattered through the images posted to social media using #DarkSkinRedLipProject.
The young advocate carried the torch For Brown Girls to appreciate their beauty from inside and out, while accenting their outer beauty with makeup. Her website is a cause of celebration of “the beauty of dark skin while combating colorism and promoting self love,” she wrote in the website’s mission statement.