Aja Naomi King is a Capricorn. That’s important, a necessary revelation; it explains many things about the acuteness of King’s acting, and the impressive steadiness of her career thus far. Another revelation: Our birthdays are a day apart, hers on the 11th, mine on the 10th. This gave us (gave me) an instant bond when we were first introduced, one that feels akin to sisterhood, a very specific sisterhood that provides a rare understanding of all our shared, confusingly distinctive idiosyncrasies. But it also makes sense: Capricorns are said to possess a great specificity. We like what we like, determinedly. We are the quintessential Keep Calm and Carry On poster; we are the elders of astrology, precisely because of an innate wisdom we carry, one that, at times, feels preordained. I told King all this, with heady enthusiasm and no irony, the morning we met, and she agreed with excited sighs and giddy nods, mirroring my energy completely. I breathed a sigh of relief. Bringing up astrology can be a gamble. But it wound up being a safe bet with King. “Every first of the month,” King said, “I send my mom and my little sisters their horoscope. It’s tradition.” The way that she said that last part, the part about tradition and family, transported me straight to a scene in the movie Ever After, when the young Danielle de Barbarac (aka Cinderella) turns to her friend, Gustave, and explains that her father always turns to wave her a last goodbye, as he rides away on horseback, off to another job. “It’s tradition,” Cinderella says with a calm assuredness.
Aja announced on social media today that she has become the new celebrity spokesperson for L’Oréal Paris! She also shared this beautiful photo to kickoff the campaign, which you can see in full here or in the gallery. Here are some details about the campaign:
Aja will star in TV, print and digital advertising campaigns for the leading global beauty brand beginning in the United States in early 2018. Her first campaign will be for True Match Lumi Glow, a new collection of five products designed to create an effortless and luminous glow – Glotion Natural Glow Enhancer, Glow Nude Palette, Shimmerista Powder, Glow Amour Glow Boosting Drops and Bronze It Bronzer. Following True Match Lumi Glow, Aja will be featured in campaigns for Hair, Skincare, as well as Cosmetics.
Additionally, Aja will serve as a presenter at L’Oréal Paris’ Women of Worth celebration on December 6, 2017. The annual event celebrates ten inspiring women who are making a difference in their communities across the country. Tapping into her steadfast commitment of inspiring others to see their own value, she will also be leveraged to drive moments of worth and empowerment for the brand through event appearances, social media promotion and campaign engagement.
Aja has been cast in a new project called “A Girl from Mogadishu,” which is the story of Ifrah Ahmed and her extraordinary journey to escape war-torn Somalia. The film is written and directed by Mary McGuckian and is currently filming. It is scheduled to be released in 2018. Congrats, Aja!
Aja is featured as one of the cover stars of Marie Claire‘s 2017 Fresh Faces issue! Emily Ratajkowski, Janelle Monae, Zoey, Deutch, and Alexandra Daddario also have their own covers. There’s an excerpt from the article below and 2 videos. I’ve also added photos to the gallery, and scans will come when the issue is released. Marie Claire‘s May 2017 Fresh Faces issues hits newsstands on April 18!
Aja Naomi King, actress, How to Get Away With Murder
“I was afraid of the darkness of my skin. I believed I had to be celebrated for my intelligence and my sense of humor. Those could be the beautiful things about me since my skin couldn’t. I remember in junior high having a beach day with my family and going to school the next day. Someone in my class exclaimed shock at my appearance. She didn’t know black people could tan. The look on her face stuck with me. For years, I wanted to avoid direct sunlight. The comments you hear as a child stick with you. [I was] afraid of photos in dark rooms because you know no one will be able to see you in the picture and [people] will make fun of you. [I feared] walking into a room that has a black wall and hearing someone remark about how you’ve disappeared. You try to avoid these situations so you’re not in a position to act like you don’t care or [you] make fun of the darkness of your skin before someone else does so that maybe it will sting less. It has been a process of self-love to embrace the beauty of every single drop that makes up the richness that is my beautiful brown skin. If you learn anything in life, learn to love yourself. There is no amount of makeup or skin-care products that will make you love yourself.”
Aja was one of the honorees at last night’s Essence Black Women In Hollywood Awards in Beverly Hills, CA! She was honored for her work in the industry along with fellow actresses Yara Shahidi, Janelle Monae and Isse Rae. The event was attended by some amazing women, including Viola Davis, Alfre Woodard, Gabrielle Union, Tracee Ellis Ross, and lots more.