Tory Burch starts social media campaign to encourage people to wear masks

Tory Burch is spearheading a social media campaign to encourage people to wear face masks during the Covid-19 pandemic.The 54-year-old American designer and philanthropist took to Instagram to launch the #WearADamnMask initiative, and asked her famous …

Tory Burch is spearheading a social media campaign to encourage people to wear face masks during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The 54-year-old American designer and philanthropist took to Instagram to launch the #WearADamnMask initiative, and asked her famous friends to help her ensure the campaign goes viral.

“I am sure you are all seeing what I am seeing. Covid-19 rates in the U.S. are rising at a truly scary rate. One thing I know for sure is that there’s a very easy way each of us can help, and that’s to #WearADamnMask whenever we are in public,” Tory captioned a selfie, in which she can be seen wearing a white mask covered with an intricate black design.

“#WearaDamnMask because we want to protect ourselves and, even more importantly, we want to protect others,” she added. “#WearaDamnMask because clearly, the doctors and data say we are not going to beat this pandemic unless we each do our part to get rid of it.

“#WearaDamnMask because is it not a political issue, it is an issue of saving lives. #WearaDamnMask because it is the only way to keep our most vulnerable safe and the only way to get our economy back on track.”

She invited every one of her 2.4 million followers to help her spread the word, and urged them to share their mask selfies.

“Trust me, it takes a lot for me to post a selfie, this is urgent!” she quipped. “We are all in this together.”

Tory challenged her famous friends, such as Kerry Washington and Mindy Kaling, to join her in getting the message out, and so far, celebrities including Tracee Ellis Ross, Marisa Tomei and fellow designer Diane von Furstenberg have participated.

In the U.S. alone, there have been more than 2.7 million cases of Covid-19, and over 130,000 deaths.

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Kelvin Harrison Jr. turned down The High Note three times

Kelvin Harrison Jr. turned down his role in The High Note three times because he feared he wasn’t good enough.In Nisha Ganatra’s new comedy-drama, the Waves actor plays unsigned singer David Cliff, who is discovered by Dakota Johnson’s aspiring m…

Kelvin Harrison Jr. turned down his role in The High Note three times because he feared he wasn’t good enough.

In Nisha Ganatra’s new comedy-drama, the Waves actor plays unsigned singer David Cliff, who is discovered by Dakota Johnson’s aspiring music producer and convinces him to let her produce his debut album.

But in a new interview with Collider, Kelvin revealed that he turned down the project repeatedly because he didn’t rate his vocal skills.

“I said no, three times before even auditioning,” he shared. “I read the script and I thought it was wonderful, but I was like, ‘You can find someone that’s better. I don’t wanna embarrass myself. I don’t wanna do that to your movie. You deserve a good supporting male.’

“But they convinced me, eventually, and I met with the director, who was wonderful. So, I did my first tape, and then they brought me in for a chemistry read with Dakota, and I was like, ‘I’m never gonna get this job. I’m not tall enough. I’m not cool enough. Dakota is beautiful. She’s just better.’ I think all of those things played into that.”

The 25-year-old then noted that he didn’t get the part at first but it eventually circled back round to him, and it was refreshing being able to play someone who wasn’t still in high school for once.

“I’d never played a day older than 18, so the first challenge was figuring out, ‘What’s it like to actually live like a grown man? I’m a 25-year-old and I’ve been pretending that I was in high school, since I left high school.’ That was the first step,” he explained.

The High Note, also starring Tracee Ellis Ross, is now available on-demand.

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Tracee Ellis Ross wanted to sing like Jennifer Hudson in The High Note

Tracee Ellis Ross originally wanted to sound like Jennifer Hudson when she made her singing debut in The High Note.The Black-ish star plays superstar musician Grace Davis, who hits a midlife crisis when she’s torn between recording a new album and doin…

Tracee Ellis Ross originally wanted to sound like Jennifer Hudson when she made her singing debut in The High Note.

The Black-ish star plays superstar musician Grace Davis, who hits a midlife crisis when she’s torn between recording a new album and doing a Las Vegas residency, in the new movie.

Tracee, who is the daughter of music icon Diana Ross, was nervous to make her singing debut in the film, and thought it would be a good idea to emulate one of her singing heroes while playing Grace.

“I wanted to sound like Jennifer Hudson,” she told musician Tyler the Creator for Interview magazine. “But then I realised how weird it would be if I opened up my mouth and Jennifer Hudson’s voice came out. People would be like, ‘What the f**k?'”

While she insisted that she doesn’t embarrass easily, she was fearful of not living up to her own expectations on stage.

“Part of my fear was I had an idea of what I thought I was supposed to sound like, as opposed to walking into it to discover what I sound like and let that be it,” she explained. “And what I realised is that singing and soul is not about sounding like something, it’s about telling the truth… We do all this pretzeling to try and be who we think the world wants us to be, but the practice, for me, was about getting out of my way.”

Tracee added that realising her potential and accepting she wouldn’t sound like her mother was pivotal to her playing the character truthfully.

“Stop trying to sound like something and let your voice out of your body, which is why it feels like, when you do sing, the truth is coming out of you,” she shared.

The High Note is available on demand now.

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Tracee Ellis Ross unveils second drop of Pattern Beauty haircare line

Tracee Ellis Ross has extended the offerings in her Pattern Beauty haircare line.The Black-ish star launched the brand, which caters to curly hair textures, last year. Following the success of the products, Tracee has announced that phase two of the co…

Tracee Ellis Ross has extended the offerings in her Pattern Beauty haircare line.

The Black-ish star launched the brand, which caters to curly hair textures, last year. Following the success of the products, Tracee has announced that phase two of the collection will be available to buy from Friday.

In addition to expanding the size options of existing formulas in the Pattern Beauty range, the drop also includes a hydrating mist, two curl gel options, a styling cream, and an edge control cream.

“(Phase two) is what you guys have been asking for, it’s an evolution of wash day and it is about strutting and sculpting and being free,” Tracee wrote in a post on Instagram.

The new products also include three styling tools – an edging tool to complement the new edge control cream, a hair pick, and a detangling wide-tooth comb – as well as a clarifying shampoo and jojoba oil hair serum.

Tracee posted a video on Instagram earlier this week, which teased the launch of phase two of Pattern Beauty’s haircare line, and shared her thoughts on the importance of supporting black-owned beauty brands.

“I’m reminded of the importance of being a black-owned business and of why Pattern has been centred around the beauty of blackness from the start,” the 47-year-old stated. “I’m reminded that sharing the beauty of blackness, the power of blackness, the importance of our blackness has always been urgent.”

The collection will launch on 19 June, which is also called Juneteenth in the U.S., as it commemorates the date in 1865 when enslaved people were freed across the 13 Confederate States of America.

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Tracee Ellis Ross feels insecure about her looks when using social media

Tracee Ellis Ross feels insecure about her looks and “unsafe” when she’s using social media.In a wide-ranging interview with Tyler, the Creator for Interview magazine, the actress discussed self-confidence and how she always strives to be herself. Trac…

Tracee Ellis Ross feels insecure about her looks and “unsafe” when she’s using social media.

In a wide-ranging interview with Tyler, the Creator for Interview magazine, the actress discussed self-confidence and how she always strives to be herself.

Tracee also touched upon the use of filtered and edited pictures on Instagram, and admitted that it not only began to affect her creativity, but also had an impact on how she feels about herself offline.

“We’re all so busy trying to make ourselves look like everybody else and talk like everybody else. You’re like, ‘Are there robots around me? What’s happening?'” she shared. “I don’t like it. It makes me feel unsafe, because what it starts to do is make me feel like who I am is wrong.

“I don’t want to look in the mirror and think, ‘I need to change that, make it look more like a filter.’ You spend so much time worrying about those kinds of things that you can’t get lost in your imagination,” she explained.

Elsewhere in the chat, the Black-ish star also said she’s been taking the time to dress up while at home during the Covid-19 pandemic because it makes her “heart sing”.

“People are like, ‘Are you still dressing up in the pandemic?’ I was like, ‘Well, I have a different version of it.’ I haven’t worn pants with zippers or a thing that I have to send to the dry cleaners, but, yeah, I still put on a lip,” the 47-year-old added.

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Nisha Ganatra was dead set on casting Tracee Ellis Ross in The High Note

Director Nisha Ganatra always knew Tracee Ellis Ross would be her leading lady in The High Note.The movie follows the struggles of fictional music icon Grace Davis, who is torn between recording a new album and doing a Las Vegas residency, and the Blac…

Director Nisha Ganatra always knew Tracee Ellis Ross would be her leading lady in The High Note.

The movie follows the struggles of fictional music icon Grace Davis, who is torn between recording a new album and doing a Las Vegas residency, and the Black-ish star was the director’s first pick for the part.

“You know what? It always was Tracee for me. She’s been such a wonderful comedic actress for so long, and I saw her do some really moving work, so I knew she could handle the emotional depth of the character,” she told Entertainment Tonight.

“But also, who else but Tracee could bring us a real – ugh, this overused word – authentic look into the life of a music icon? She grew up with one, with the music icon of all time,” the filmmaker added, referring to the actress’ famous mother, Diana Ross.

However, Ganatra confessed that she had never heard Ross sing, so was worried that they would have to use movie trickery to make her look – and sound – the part.

“The only dilemma was, can she sing? And even that, I was like, ‘Well, I have all the movie tricks we can do to make it look like she can sing.’ But when she came in the studio, (producer) Rodney Jerkins and I were just like, ‘Thank God. She can sing! Now we don’t have to do all that movie magic. We can just record her and let her show the world her voice,'” she laughed. “That was really satisfying.”

The High Note is now available to watch digitally.

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Tracee Ellis Ross uses breathing exercises to help de-stress

Tracee Ellis Ross has demonstrated to her followers how she uses three simple breathing exercises to help her de-stress. The Black-ish actress posted a relaxing six-minute video on Instagram on Tuesday night to show her followers how she has been pract…

Tracee Ellis Ross has demonstrated to her followers how she uses three simple breathing exercises to help her de-stress.

The Black-ish actress posted a relaxing six-minute video on Instagram on Tuesday night to show her followers how she has been practising self-care and mindfulness amid the coronavirus pandemic and the ongoing Black Lives Matter protests in Los Angeles.

“As these necessary tectonic shifts are happening in our world and as we are leaning into difficult, complex, and sharp yet necessary conversations, we must also be active about our self-care,” she wrote in the caption. “I made this video a few days ago when my back was seized up (makes sense). I use breath to connect me to the present moment and to create space in my body. I use sound as a way to release vibrationally and energetically. Sending everyone love and light.”

The High Note star admitted she keeps “feeling so disrupted” and “easily knocked off my centre”. Accordingly, she has been using the techniques to ground herself and she decided to record one of her sessions in order to help others who might be feeling the same.

“I wanted to check in because I had three exercises I wanted to share with you guys that I thought might be helpful for you. They’re simple, they’re gentle, they’re a way to meet and greet yourself, lovingly, gently, with tenderness,” the 47-year-old explained at the start of the video.

Tracee then sat in a chair, closed her eyes, and instructed her viewers to allow their bodies to soften and let go of any tension. For the second part of the exercise, she told them to “allow your body to feel the weight of your body” and let the chair take their weight.

For the final part, Tracee asked her viewers to “let your body fill up with air” and then sigh it out with a big exhale sound.

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Tracee Ellis Ross proud to make singing debut in The High Note

Tracee Ellis Ross decided it was time to make her singing debut when the script for The High Note came her way.The Black-ish actress, the daughter of Motown legend Diana Ross, plays soul singer Grace Davis in Nisha Ganatra’s latest comedy-drama.While…

Tracee Ellis Ross decided it was time to make her singing debut when the script for The High Note came her way.

The Black-ish actress, the daughter of Motown legend Diana Ross, plays soul singer Grace Davis in Nisha Ganatra’s latest comedy-drama.

While Ross has never been heard singing on screen before, she decided to push through her fears when the part came along.

“It was my childhood dream, I always wanted to sing,” the 47-year-old told BBC News. “I didn’t put it away, but I think the longer you wait to do certain things the more frightening they get… The idea of comparison because of who my mom is, or the judgement of doing it now at this age, became bigger than the dream. So, when this role came along, I was like, ‘It’s time.’”

The High Note marks Ross’s first onscreen film role since 2009, and she explained that her busy TV schedule leaves her with little time to pursue other projects.

“The truth is it’s left me little desire to pursue certain things, because I’m tired and I have a full schedule, but it takes something I’m really excited about and then I’m like ‘this is it’,” she said.

Ross was drawn to the story, about her world-famous singer’s relationship with her assistant, played by Dakota Johnson, because both women were pursuing their own dreams and “not against each other”.

The High Note was originally supposed to be released in cinemas but is now available to rent digitally, and Ross admitted she would have liked to have seen her singing debut on the big screen.

“I’m actually kind of excited,” Ross stated. “Don’t get me wrong, I wanted to see myself on the big screen as Grace Davis, but I have a pretty big TV screen! I feel like there’s something really wonderful and intimate about being able to meet people where they are, in their homes.”

The High Note is out now.

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Tracee Ellis Ross pushed out of comfort zone with The High Note wardrobe

Tracee Ellis Ross was pushed out of her comfort zone with her wardrobe in The High Note. In the new comedy-drama, the Black-ish star plays world-famous singer Grace Davis, who can usually be seen wearing glamorous high-fashion clothes, complete with st…

Tracee Ellis Ross was pushed out of her comfort zone with her wardrobe in The High Note.

In the new comedy-drama, the Black-ish star plays world-famous singer Grace Davis, who can usually be seen wearing glamorous high-fashion clothes, complete with stilettos, designer bags, and a full face of make-up while out in public.

And while Tracee didn’t find the wardrobe super comfortable, stepping into Grace’s outfits really helped her channel the diva.

“It always starts from the wardrobe. It’s like the shoes up. How is your character touching the ground? Although I do not love wearing stiletto heels at all times, although I do not love wearing eyelashes because they’re so uncomfortable, Grace Davis does!” she told Harper’s Bazaar. “I wanted her to be different from Tracee, because she is… I wanted her to be bold, strong, not afraid to be the most powerful and most eye-catching person in a room at any given time.”

Tracee also considered the details of Grace’s look, from her nail colour and eyelashes to her hairstyle changes.

“I really felt like Grace Davis was a woman who changed her nail polish colour with her outfits, which we did,” the 47-year-old continued. “I really felt like Grace Davis was a woman who wore eyelashes, which I don’t, but she did. I felt like Grace’s hair had to always feel iconic. And so even her stage hair was sort of rock and roll and long, and then her other hair was sort of, I don’t know, I called it my ’70s porn hair.”

The High Note, also starring Dakota Johnson and Kelvin Harrison Jr., is now available to watch digitally.

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Tracee Ellis Ross insists The High Note isn’t inspired by her superstar mother Diana Ross

Tracee Ellis Ross has rubbished rumours her character in The High Note is not based on her mother Diana Ross.In the upcoming drama, she plays fictional music icon Grace Davis, who is trying to reinvent herself after a decade-long hiatus by recording a …

Tracee Ellis Ross has rubbished rumours her character in The High Note is not based on her mother Diana Ross.

In the upcoming drama, she plays fictional music icon Grace Davis, who is trying to reinvent herself after a decade-long hiatus by recording a new album.

And in a new interview with Entertainment Tonight, Tracee was quizzed about the inspiration for her character, and slammed reports that she was based on her mother, who herself made several comebacks in the music industry.

“I did not share any of this with her. I told her I got a big movie, but I did not tell her what the movie was and that I had to sing in the movie,” the 47-year-old explained. “I walked through that on my own and with a lot of tears with friends.

“And I understand there have been a lot of questions, like, ‘Are you playing your mum in the movie? Is this movie inspired by your mum?’ And the answer to that is no.”

Director Nisha Ganatra also revealed that she collaborated with Tracee on the role and made a conscious effort to avoid Grace Davis having any similarities to the Endless Love hitmaker.

“We used a lot of references. It was Janet Jackson, Whitney Houston, Beyonce, Alicia Keys, Madonna, Tina Turner. We pulled from all the biggest, biggest icons to make this character, Grace Davis, and pulled really specific things from each one of them so that she had a very clear idea of who she was and where she came from and wasn’t doing an imitation of her mum,” she stated.

“That would have been, I think, just disappointing for everybody.”

The High Note, also starring Dakota Johnson, is now available via on-demand streaming services.

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