Normalizing Black Women and Luxury: Hermes Birkin Bags are Trending, What’s the Issue? #BlackGirlsDeserveBirkins
In recent weeks and months, we have noticed a surge of women in hip hop rocking coveted Hermes Birkin Bags (as the City Girls rapped in their famous song Act Up, “Real ass b*tch, give a f*ck ’bout a n*gga/ Big Birkin bag, hold five, six figures“).
As we wrote here, “Birkins range in price from $12,000 to more than $200,000. Exotic skins command a higher price (approx $95,500). Birkins are also covetable because they are not only extremely expensive, but also hard to get. They are reserved for an exclusive group of people (namely those who are longtime customers of the brand). And lastly, with the base price at $12,000, you generally have to be in a certain wealth bracket to afford them.”
Comments on posts about women like Dreamdoll, above, reek of skepticism and judgment. @ShayNeverGetOld Wrote “Hope they all own house and properties walking around with 30,000 bags.” @_SimplyFe_ added, “These girls flaunting birkins like it’s coach… Im convinced I need to that a closer look & do the sniff test 🤔”
While there are many naysayers, and those not only questioning these ladies’ ability to afford to bags but also the bag’s authenticity, there are others who see nothing wrong with it. On a post about a custom Birkin bag Cardi B gifted to Meegan the Stallion, @The.Danie wrote, “It seems like y’all only wanna say these brands lose value once black folks start being able to afford them. How y’all tired of seeing Hermès bags now that more black girls are starting to have the funds to acquire them? Some of the biggest haters I swear #BlackGirlsDeserveBirkins.”
We definitely agree with The Danie! Young women of color are making major move these days, and more than enough to buy Birkins– real ones.
Also the idea of black women ‘cheapening a brand’ intrinsically intimates that black women hold inferior value–enough to reduce the value of a heritage brand. Nothing could be further from the truth. Nothing is inferior about black women or women in hip hop, as they are some of the greatest purveyors and consumers of luxury goods (Hermes should be thanking them for all the extra Birkins they will sell this year).
Times have changed, and it’s way past time for us to start getting used to seeing more than a handful of women of color (and some men) having the disposable income to comfortably afford a $12,000 bag.
We should be celebrating them, not questioning their spending habits or sniffing the leather to spot a fake.
What say you?
Written by Kartia Velino