Leah Vernon is one heck of a woman: fashion/beauty blogger, model, writer AND body-positive activist. This young, African-American Muslim hails from Detroit, Michigan, and has been featured on multiple sites for her keen fashion sense; including Bustle, Plus Model Mag and Styleblazer. She also just released her first fiction novel about a dystopian society entitled ‘Impure’. With a business degree from Wayne State University and two (yes, you read that right!) Master’s degrees from Wilkes University for Creative Writing and Publishing, Leah started her blog due to the lack of diversity of role models in the fashion and beauty scene. By combining fashion with faith oh-so-stylishly, Leah is leading the revolution for atypical forms of beauty, all while advocating style and self-love for the underrepresented communities. Join us for an exclusive interview with this trailblazing Zahara Warrior, who’s making waves for the global modesty movement!
Tell us five things about yourself.
1. Deathly afraid of spiders.
2. Obsessed with matte lippies.
3. Cheese is my best friend.
4. I have three degrees from two universities.
5. Huge Sci-fi and superhero fan.
You’re currently living in Detroit right now. Any cool spots we should know of if we’re visiting your hometown?
The best place to go in Detroit is the Riverwalk. From there you can view the large body of water that separates the U.S. from Canada.
I was tired of feeling ugly because I wasn’t tall, because I wasn’t light skinned, and because I was fat. So, I set out to create my own version of beauty—inner and outward.
What’s the best advice you’ve been given?
Go with your gut. You’ll have certain individuals that will try and sway you from a path that will work for you, and they’ll try to give you advice based off their experience. No one knows you like you. So, go with your first instinct.
What inspired you to start your style/fashion/beauty blog?
I was tired of seeing the same old westernized standards of beauty being pushed in the media and in fashion magazines. I was tired of feeling ugly because I wasn’t tall, because I wasn’t light skinned, and because I was fat. So, I set out to create my own version of beauty—inner and outward. Then my blog, Beauty and the Muse, was born.
It’s been 3 years since you started Beauty and the Muse. How has the experience been thus far?
It’s been a long road. When I first started, I had no idea what the heck I was doing. Haha. Sometimes, I still don’t. I just kind of go with the flow. Bomb pictures. Bomb content. My experience overall has been amazing. I’ve gotten love from my African sisters, my Indonesian sisters, my Caucasian sisters, and everyone in between. People have been very supportive.
No one knows you like you. So, go with your first instinct.
As a Zahara Warrior, what advice would you give someone hoping to be a blogger like yourself?
Be yourself. Don’t try to copy other bloggers. Think outside the box when it comes to style and art. Get creative. The possibilities are endless!
You’re a smart, strong and gorgeous plus-size model and body-positive activist. What’s the funniest/craziest/weirdest moment you’ve had about that experience?
The weirdest moment was when this guy tried to body shame me on the internet. He called me the Charmin Bear and that he was tired of seeing fat people model. First of all, if you google the Charmin Bear, he is very cute and lovable. Haha. Secondly, he was just a hater. And his comment ended up being deleted.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years’ time?
Well, I just published a dystopian novel, Impure. Which I am very proud of. So, I definitely want to publish more fiction novels. On the flip side, I’d like to travel the world spreading body love and empowering young girls and women to be the best version of themselves. I want to land a major fashion campaign and magazine. That’d be boss!
What item in your closet do you wear the most?
A long knit vest. It’s black and gray. Goes with anything! Lol.
I’d like to travel the world spreading body love and empowering young girls and women to be the best version of themselves.
What should every woman try at least once in her life?
Travel to an exotic land by herself.
What is the proudest accomplishment of your life so far?
Being featured in Marie Claire UK!
Complete this sentence: A beautiful woman is someone who …
Uplifts other people.
Make sure you follow Leah and her crazy life of style on Instagram, Facebook and Snapchat (LeahVDaily). To read her eye-opening and inspirational works, don’t forget to follow her blog, Beauty and the Muse.
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