Happy (Belated) Birthday San Diego Melanin!


Remember that time I got all dolled up for a ball and then *didn’t* post any pictures of it? LOL.

A couple weeks ago a social organization that hosts events for people of color in San Diego called San Diego Melanin celebrated their one-year anniversary with an extravagant soiree!

I can’t remember how or when I discovered San Diego Melanin, but it couldn’t have been too far out from their inception. They seemed to pop up at the exact right time in my life, coming out of a fog of depression, and coming into my own as I learned to really love my skin, hair, and self.

As most black San Diego residents will mention within the first five minutes of conversation, it’s hard to find each other in this city! So many people I’ve talked to said they moved from other areas with dense black populations to San Diego and all wondered the same thing: “Where are all the black people at?!”

Of course my own story runs parallel to that, having grown up here with mostly non-black friends and noticing but also not fully grasping the gravity of the absence.


Black people need community, we need to see each other, we need to talk about hair products, and racism, and Black Panther, and business, and dating, and self-love. Which is why I’m SO HAPPY to have found San Diego Melanin, because they create spaces for us to be together, to commune. So OBVI I had to show out one time for their birthday.


The dress I wore is actually an old bridesmaid’s dress from my best friend’s wedding. Not gonna lie, I truly relished the fact that when they announced the attire was black tie, I already knew I had options on DECK. My dress is the Jenny Yoo “Annabelle” gown, and a quick Pinterest search will give you a glimpse of how popular it is. For good reason too; the dress itself is a sweetheart neckline strapless gown, but it’s got two fabric panels in the front and two in the back that allow you to tie it up in all KINDS of ways. I mean yes, it’s a nice gown so the price is steeper, but you get at LEAST twelve different looks out of it which makes it worth it.

For the ball I was thinking along the lines of French Chic, what with the necktie and big side bow. Last time I wore this dress (for homegirl’s wedding), my makeup was light and natural, so for this event I went the complete opposite: dramatic wings and lashes with a bold crimson lip.

Honestly all I’m asking is for more fancy events to go to so I can wear this dress all seventeen different ways. Sooooo who’s hosting the next gala?