Wellness is the latest fashion statement worthy of a moment as Mobilizing Our Brothers Initiative (MOBI) launches its latest campaign with the help of Dutch fashion brand, Scotch & Soda.
Under the name ‘Well and Well-Dressed’, the campaign encourages queer communities of colour to consider holistic health as a lifestyle choice to combat their stressors and adversities while looking and feeling great in the process.
MOBI curates social events for queer people of colour that promote wellness, community, and personal development. This is accomplished through the MOBItalks series with previous speakers including Karamo Brown, DeRay McKesson, Ty Hunter, Emil Wilbekin, Patrik-Ian Polk, Michael Arceneaux, and Darnell Moore amongst others. The group also runs MOBIfest, a 3-day NYC citywide festival in June that celebrates queer contributions to the arts and media.
The team tapped nine LGBTQ+ influencers to lead the charge as models for the campaign. The influencers to appear in the campaign are:
- B. Hawk Snipes (@bhawksnipes) – LGBTQ+ advocate and featured actor in ‘Pose’
- B MAJR (@bprep) – NYC based DJ
- Bry’Nt (@bryntmusic) – Rapper and music artist
- Devin-Norelle (@steroidbeyonce) – Writer, model, and Trans advocate
- Kameron Mack (@kameron_depaul) – Director and video producer at Complex Media
- London Miles (@proseccopapi11) – Fitness model and influencer
- Marco Maldonado (@_mguapo) – Event planner and first openly gay cast member/couple on BET reality show ‘Hustle in Brooklyn’
- Randy Bowden (@randybowdenjr) – Model and first openly gay cast member/couple on BET reality show ‘Hustle in Brooklyn’
- Rap Sarmiento (@rapisoffensive) – Fashion stylist
To look their best, Scotch & Soda outfitted each influencer in a full look from their latest in-store collection to match their personal style regardless of gender norms. The campaign was shot by photographer LaQuann Dawson (@laquanndawson) at Holyrad Studios in Brooklyn.
Model, B. Hawk, who identifies as non-binary, can be seen wearing a Scotch & Soda women’s top and pants matched with personal accessories.
“Clothing affects a person’s mental processes and perceptions of others”
“A lot of the magic that makes New York Fashion Week happen can easily be credited to large contributions from the queer community that gravitate towards that industry” says MOBI Founder, DaShawn Usher.
“New York Fashion Week brings a level of excitement to the city and an added interest in how you look and present yourself. We want to start the conversation around the wellness aspect of that. Clothing affects a person’s mental processes and perceptions of others. The added pressure from social media to look your best definitely plays into that as well.
“We’re encouraging everyone to dedicate as much time to their inner self as their outer appearance and if looking good increases your self-esteem and makes you a more confident and vibrant person, we’re here for it!”
On working on the campaign with MOBI and Scotch & Soda, fitness model London Miles said: “I try my best to be both physically and mentally fit. I love the work that MOBI is doing because they’re creating spaces for queer people of color that promote that idea and provide resources for us.”
The ‘Well and Well-Dressed’ campaign kicks off MOBI’s programming for the year beginning with its 2019 MOBItalks series on Saturday, March 23rd in the Bronx; Saturday, April 20th in Harlem; and Saturday, May 18th in Long Island City. This all leads up to MOBIfest a few weeks before World Pride in June.
MOBI’s events are all free to the public with access to MOBIfest earned through receiving a MOBI sponsored wellness service or participating in dedicated health or professional development activation across the city.