Behind The Scenes

Behind The Scenes With Kimberly Elise At The Essence Festival in NOLA


This year’s Essence Fest was the ultimate destination for community, music, and beauty and lifestyle inspiration this summer. Actress Kimberly Elise attended the event to promote Almost Christmas, which will be in theaters on Friday, November 11, 2016.

Kimberly’s day began bright and early on Saturday morning (after a late night of dancing to Maxwell, New Edition, Kenny “Babyface” Edmonds, Tyrese, Avery Wilson, and Faith Evans the night before at the Superdome in NOLA). After a light vegan breakfast, the KE beauty team assembled for hair, makeup, and grooming in Kimberly’s hotel room.


Essence-FestivalCelebrity makeup artist Yolanda Sheridan, who did Kimberly’s makeup for the film “Almost Christmas,” is an expert in Natural Beauty. A licensed aesthetician and respected makeup artist, Yolanda served as the Department Head of Makeup while filming. Yolonda shares her tips for getting the Kimberly Elise look!

“For today’s look, I like peachy colors. Because of all the brown, which we call the pecan tan, those peachy colors looked very good on her. I went with the peachy and kept it natural. A little frost and peach on her lips. With a little pop of glow on her cheeks with the blush.” — Yolanda Sheridan, Celebrity Makeup Artist


The non-stop day was filled with amazing activities, including an “Almost Christmas” cast Q&A, Celebrity Cookout Challenge, and pictures with fans. Check out these exclusive behind-the-scenes stills from the Essence Fest.


Essence-Festival Essence-Festival


Managing Editor of Ajableu Oldham enjoyed a bit of R&R in the Beauty Bungalow, where she met assistant beauty editor of Virginia LowmanThe beauty maven shared her thoughts on the event and her employment at Essence Magazine.

There are so many women of different hues… involving ourselves in [the] community and being there for each other. There’s something really powerful about that, when all of us are housed in one area… I just love Essence Festival. And I’m not just saying that because I’m employed by Essence! I worked for five different magazines now and this is the one magazine where it really feels like family and it all comes together at Essence Festival. – Virginia M. Lowman

Virginia M. Lowman

The star-studded 3-day event also featured keynote speakers such as Essence Magazine Editor-In-Chief Mikki Taylor, Tyra Banks, Misty Copeland, Reverend Al Sharpton, Bernard Tyson, and Iyanla Vanzant. Discover more here. The event offered deeply inspiring, borderline magical inspiration from thought leaders, who shared their insights about their industries, thoughts on how they accomplished their goals throughout their careers, and tips to help you make your dreams come true.



The party didn’t stop there. After the day parties, keynote speakers, and the beauty experiences, singers Estelle, Jeremih, Common, Charlie Wilson, and Mariah Carey performed on Saturday night. This amazing event was not to be missed. Thank you Essence for providing a place for community members to gather, share, and give. We can’t wait to see you next year.



Check out the newly released “Almost Christmas” trailer. “Almost Christmas” was directed by David E. Talbert. and stars Kimberly Elise, Jessie T. Usher, Gabrielle Union, Danny Glover, and Mo’Nique. Find out what happens when the dysfunctional Meyers family gathers together on Christmas for the first time since their mother passed away in this hilarious holiday family film.


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