• Solange McKenzie

Misa Hylton: The Secret Weapon of Fashion

Stylist and Designer Misa Hylton

The secret weapon, the weapon concealed until one is ready to make a huge impact. Jaw dropping fashion statements that is what Misa Hilton delivers. The Secret weapon in the fashion industry. She is a stylist who has made a big impact especially when it comes to styling musical artists.

Lil Kim in custom Misa Hylton for 1999 VMAs

Hylton grew up loving fashion as well as hip-hop. While listening to music, she would picture what the artists would be wearing. This passion pushed her to start her fashion career at the age of 17. Her first job was assisting at a video shoot for musical artist Jodeci. She was also dating Sean "Puffy" Combs, who at the time was an intern at A&R Records. Because of Combs' job, he was able to bring Hylton into spaces where she could share her talents and network with major artists. Some of these connections even evolved to be her first clients. As Hylton began to grow as a stylist, she realized she also had to take on the role of a designer. For one of her most notable clients, Lil Kim, Hylton would need to design clothes because she was not able to pull from designers due to Kim's measurements. She was the mastermind and designer behind Lil Kim's jaw dropping 1999 VMA's look.

Beyoncé in an MCM look styled by Misa Hylton

Misa Hylton has styled many other notable clients such as Mary J. Blige, Aaliyah, LaLa Anothony, Missy Elliot and more, but she has also made other contributions to the fashion industry. She founded Chyna Doll Enterprises, an agency that provides stylists for celebrities. She has been very vocal about the disparities faced by women of color within the industry. For example, because of Hylton's style many large designers wouldn't work with her, but only after styling Lil Kim for a MAC campaign did she receive mainstream notoriety for her work. She also founded Misa Hylton Fashion Academy with co-founder and stylist Jai Hudson. Additionally, Hylton has collaborated with brands and designers like Dapper Dan and INC for Macy's. She was also Global Creative Partner for the brand MCM. Today she is recognized for the MCM look in Beyoncé and Jay-Z’s "Apes***" music video, Megan Thee Stallion's 2019 MCM chaps and cowboy hat and more. Lastly, in 2020 Misa Hylton was honored by Harlem's Fashion Row for all her contributions.

Mary J. Blige in MCM x Misa Hylton

Missy Elliot and Dancers in MCM x Misa Hylton

-Solange McKenzie

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