Jackie Aina Essence Magazine
photo: Essence Magazine

Amid all the recent beauty YouTuber drama, there was always one influencer who stayed above the fray. Her name is Jackie Aina, the unproblematic yet outspoken and talented beauty YouTuber who has made it her career mission to bring true inclusion and diversity to the beauty space. And though we hail Aina from our own platforms from day to day, another and much bigger platform is celebrating her, too. 

Yesterday, Essence Magazine revealed its newest digital cover girl, and it's none other than Aina herself. So if you were looking for a break from the fake and phony of the industry, take a read of this impactful and honest interview. We're proud of you, Auntie Jackie.

Jackie Aina is Essence's newest cover girl. 

Digital cover girl, that is. She's doing so in metallic style for the publication's June issue with her history-making feature. Aina is the first influencer to land an Essence cover both digitally and print. She took to Instagram to express her excitement. 

"Trying to maintain composure but also internally screaming from keeping this a secret for so long!!!! thank you @essence for this game changer career moment the June digital cover!! to any girl who’s ever dreamed of the impossible, it’s possible! Im living proof of it," she shared. 

She held nothing back in her interview. 

“I just want to be in every lane,”' she told Essence in an interview that touched on everything from relationships to how she feels about the beauty brands of today.

“I love when I see a team that’s just got everybody, that there are voices from every community because that tells me that behind the scenes you’re also walking the walk and you’re not just trying to capitalize and cash in on the movement,” she continued. 

The cover comes not even a week after she was featured in Forbes

Business publication Forbes Africa honored Nigerian-American Aina with one of its highest honors. 

"Thank you Forbes Africa. Is it still too late to make it on the 30 under 30 list?! we can lie and say I’m 29 no one will notice," she joked while announcing the award on her Instagram yesterday. 

Essence referred to Aina as a "change agent."

"'@jackieaina is on the front lines when it comes to educating the beauty industry on servicing people of color. 'I’m just going to keep strongarming this conversation.' Our digital cover star is more than a YouTube sensation, she's a change agent," it said, praising the history-making cover star.

And fans couldn't be more proud. 

The recognition is long-overdue for the hard-working YouTube vet.

"Come THRU Aunty Jackie! Like wow I couldn't have imagined seeing people like Jackie Aina on the cover of essence. I love seeing that magazine keeping up with the times and killing it. Jackie is such a good soul thank you for giving her her flowers now," an eager fan said. 

Even the great Pat McGrath congratulated her. 

The makeup powerhouse who has long been a supporter of Aina took to her Twitter to publicly congratulate her on her cover. Beauty fans freaked out over the display of love.  

"CONGRATULATIONS MY SWEET YOU DESERVE THE WORLD xx Pat," said the world-renowned makeup artist. 

And though Aina looked incredible all-around, people couldn't stop talking about her nails. 

And for that, we have Gracie J to thank. The New York-based nail artist slayed Aina's nails with gold and metallics, and ornate accents. Fans took notice. 

"Okurr aside of how much of an amazing accomplishment this is. My sis, we had THREE different sets of nails for the shoot. @jackieaina keeps on becoming more and more an inspiration #SLAYISTHEWAY," someone said. 

To read more about Aina's journey and her plans to take over the beauty space, check out the digital cover here