Fierce

Cascarones: the Confetti-filled Eggs That Make Easter the Most Colorful Fiesta of the Year

Since it falls at the beginning of Spring, Easter is one of the most colorful and lively events on our calendars. Across Latin America and the United States, festivals celebrating semana Santa and Easter are full of gorgeous decorations, festive performances and some of the best food you’ll eat all year. However, if you live in Mexico or in the Southern US, you’ll be aware of another tradition that celebrates the shades of Spring: cascarones.

Cascarones are hollowed chicken eggs that have been dyed and filled with confetti or small treats. These bright party favors have a long history and an enduring place in Latinx culture. In North America, cascarones were originally used in Mexico during Carnaval. They have since combined with the celebration of Easter but are also popular during New Year’s Eve, Christmas, birthdays, quinces and other fiestas. In fact, if your guests aren’t getting hit over the head by confetti eggs, can you really even call your event a celebration.

After you see this list, you might want to add these vivid eggs to all future party plans.

1. We can thank Marco Polo for cascarones.

Instagram / @emilyblincoe

Though they first came to Mexico in the 19th Century, cascarones have been around for much longer. Merchant and explorer Marco Polo first brought the favors over to Spain from China during the 13th Century. Cracking the decorated eggs over the heads of prospective sweethearts became a European courting custom before making it’s way over to Mexico.

2. Confetti wasn’t originally used.

Instagram / @prescribeddesign

Confetti wasn’t the first surprise inside cascarones. In Europe, they were originally filled with colored and/or fragrant water or powder. The eggs were sealed with wax and made for a much messier party favor. Cascarones wouldn’t be made with confetti until the custom traveled to Mexico.

3. A new tradition is born.

Instagram / @glenninnola

Easter egg hunts aren’t traditionally a thing in Mexico but that doesn’t mean eggs have no place there. When cascarones became intertwined with Easter, passing out confetti eggs to festival attendees became a custom. The mock confetti fights are called papaqui or guerra de cascarones and they can be pretty intense.

4. Cascarones reflected in la Cultura.

Instagram / @chachacovers

Like so many aspects of Latinx culture, cascarones have found their way into our art. This gouache painting by Texas artist Carmen Lomas Garza depicts a memory of time spent with family, decorating cascarones. Depictions of family and culture are a prevailing theme in Chicano art and Lomas Garza’s nostalgic take on this Easter tradition is no different.

5. Cascarones and the Jesus connection.

Instagram / @wigflipa

Besides Carnaval being closely tied to Easter, there is another reason why cascarones makes sense during this holiday. In pagan mythology, the egg has long been a symbol of rebirth. Many pagan customs were absorbed into Christianity in its infancy. Since Easter is the Christian celebration of Jesus’ resurrection, it only makes sense that eggs find a convenient place within the holiday.

6. A craft project and ammunition.

Instagram / @tanyacalvarez

A big part of the fun behind cascarones is making them. In order to prep eggs for confetti, a tiny hole is made in the shell in order to drain the insides. Once the inside is rinsed out and dried, they can be decorated. The final step is to fill them with confetti or other goodies and to seal the hole with a bit of crepe paper.

7. Buy them by the dozen.

Instagram / @munimercados

Of course, you can always skip craft time and buy already made confetti eggs. In the States, cascarones are usually sold by the dozen in grocery stores during the Easter season. Additionally, churches, schools, and youth groups also make and sell confetti eggs as a fundraiser during Carnaval and throughout Spring. You can even find cascarones for sale on Etsy and through Amazon.

8. Literally art.

Instagram / @crowningfelicity

Cascarones are made to be destroyed but that doesn’t mean they can’t be works of art. Besides a traditional dip-dye, cascarones can be painted by hand and adorned with extra embellishments. For example, these lovely floral painted eggs are reminiscent of Mexico’s glazed ceramics and tile.

9. Cascarones are just plain magical.

Instagram / @cascaroneria

Like any artform, cascaron decorating is only limited by the artist’s imagination. You can find eggs that are embellished with paper, gold leaf, flowers, and other common objects. Cartoon characters, sports franchise symbols, and mythological creatures are also popular cascaron decorations.

10. Let’s get creative.

Instagram / @c.u.b.o90

The simple cascaron is the ultimate mock battle ammunition but vendors have found ways to improve upon them. Cascaron puppets come in popular fantasy characters and are sought-after in Mexico. Kids — and kids at heart — can play with the puppets before busting them open over each others’ heads.

11. A party favor with extra party.

Instagram / @sluca5

When you think party, you probably think piñatas. These cascaron piñatas combine two fun ideas in one. A cascaron is placed on a decorated paper tube or cone and candy and treats are hidden inside. For double the fun, take the whole piñata cascaron and whack it until it cracks.

12. Fun that will go straight to your head.

Instagram / @barbacoapparel

While we appreciate the artistry behind a beautifully crafted cascaron, we haven’t forgotten their original purpose. Though they started off like an old-timey flirting tool, they’re now all about fun and a healthy dose of competition. The objective of any good cascaron fight is to get as much eggshell and confetti into your opponent’s hair as possible.

13. Never too young to learn tradition.

Instagram / @lizzyloverface

No one’s excluded from cascarones during Easter. For babies, the colorful eggs are an immediate fascination and those “baby’s first cascaron” pictures are perfect for Insta. Just be careful about their delicate heads. Crack the eggs in your hands first before dousing los bebitos in confetti.

14. Even pups get in on the party.

Instagram / @txrosie

Speaking of adorable Instagram pics, your pup can get into the cascaron party too. Just like with babies, you want to pre-creak your eggs to avoid hurt perrito’s furry, little head. Your dog is sure to get hyped up when a full-on cascaron battle kicks off and you’ll have a new partner to corner your opponents.

15. Wear your confetti crown with pride.

Instagram / @mandi_sullivan428

One aspect of cascarones that is both fun and frustrating is that confetti is almost impossible to remove. This might cause you to walk around with a confetti crown for a few days but fear not! Tradition dictates that those confetti storms are actually showering you with good luck. Suddenly a scalp covered in confetti sounds pretty good.

16. Cascarones are perfect for sibling rivalry.

Instagram / @disneychapafam

When you’re a kid, you have very little agency of your own so you’ve got to take power where you can get it. Cue the cascaron battle royale. Do you remember using your stash of confetti eggs to annihilate your primos and hermanos? We do and there’s a photo album at there somewhere to prove it.

17. Some things you don’t outgrow.

Instagram / @ekiss

However, the fun doesn’t have to stop when childhood ends. You never really outgrow beefing with your siblings and cousins and — with cascarones — you never have to. It’s all in good fun; even if your Easter egg fight looks more like a war zone than a family gathering.

18. Confetti = family fun.

Instagram / @klewis2291

Like any other holiday, Easter comes down to spending time with family and those you love. That’s why cascarones are so great. No matter who you are — young or old — you can have fun making or cracking the confetti eggs. If nothing else, you can sit back and enjoy the colorful vibrancy the eggs left behind.

19. You’ll never stop finding confetti.

Instagram / @allimcbutter

Speaking of those little paper reminders: they will end up EVERYWHERE. This is why paper confetti is ideal in the cascarones. The paper will decompose quickly and leave no harm to the earth. If you want to go even more environmentally friendly, you can add seed to your cascarones. Also, you can just straight up buy confetti with the seeds embedded that will decompose and release the seeds. Mother Earth will thank you!

20. Most importantly, have fun.

Instagram / @fiestasa

Easter is very much the celebration of Spring. For many places, it’s the first time of the year we’ll actually experience sunshine and clear skies. What better reason to celebrate than that. ¡Feliz Pascua!

Rihanna Launches A Line Of Cameo Brooches That Only Feature Black Women: FENTY Isn’t Just A Brand, It’s A Whole Festival For WOC

Fierce

Rihanna Launches A Line Of Cameo Brooches That Only Feature Black Women: FENTY Isn’t Just A Brand, It’s A Whole Festival For WOC

@fenty / Instagram

Cameos were, and still are, very prized jewels of almost cultic significance. Historically, these pieces of jewelry have been linked to wealthy, European middle and upper classes. And in true FENTY fashion, bad gal Riri is back at it again with her signature fearlessness and creativity. This time, subverting the historically European roots of the jewel, featuring the profile of African women as its centerpiece. Riri did THAT.

Robyn Fenty’s out here rocking the cosmetic and fashion industries to their core. 

Instagram @savagexfenty

Last month her inclusive SAVAGE X Fenty fashion show literally broke the industry’s “standards” by having trans, gender non-conforming, non-binary models of all colors, sizes, and beautiful looks, walk the runway in the brand’s sexy lingerie. How are we supposed to go back to what we knew, with all this inclusion?

Fenty Beauty is filling the gaps of the cosmetic industry by targetting a racially diverse market.

 

Instagram @fentybeauty

Since her line of beauty products launched in 2017, Fenty Beauty, has established itself as an all-inclusive beauty line —with forty different foundations for every complexion, along with numerous highlights and liners. Fenty Beauty has become one of the fastest selling brands, with early reports that the darkest shades of foundation keep selling out. It’s been clear from social-media testimonies – from those who possess albino to midnight-black complexions – that Rihanna has captured the right tone for diversity and racially inclusive marketing. 

FENTY is modernizing the traditionally Victorian cameo brooch and bringing it straight into 2019. 

Instagram @fenty

Rihanna’s FENTY fashion label, launched a new range of jewelry that plays with the traditional history and significance of the European classic brooch. The subversive reimagining of the jewel puts African women as its centerpiece. The collection celebrates women of color with the cameo as an emblem of their fearlessness and joy. 

The Cameo Collection is meant to be passed down through generations, like the traditional European brooch was too. 

Instagram @fenty

On October 30, FENTY unveiled a three-piece jewelry collection called The Cameo. The cameos in black resin and white glass come in earring, necklace, brooch and ring form. Framed with both Swarovski pearls and crystals, the cameos are set in gold-galvanized brass. Each piece, sculpted from relief, is meant to be passed down through generations.

As the brand explained in a press release, the Cameo was created to immortalize the the beauty of a black woman’s profile. 

Instagram @fenty

The brand explained a bit more about the history behind Cameo jewelry, writing, “Cameo jewelry has been worn as a statement of intent, belief or power. In ancient Greece, young women wore cameos bearing the portrait of Eros, the God of Love, to express their sexuality, or Medusa with her snake hair to ward off demons. Though FENTY’s cameo features a black woman’s profile, the collection is not about a singular definition of beauty; she symbolizes the beauty of difference. The cameo is an emblem of fearlessness, elevation, creativity and joy – everything FENTY stands for.”

The campaign features powerful women of different ages in sculpture-like hairstyles representing the endless possibilities of afro-hair.

Instagram @blocktfenty

The collection’s campaign was shot by Nigerian photographer Ruth Ossai, and features a powerful cast ranging in age with beautifully sculpted hairstyles coiffed by Isaac Poleon.

Hair has always been a central feature of cameo jewelry, providing the texture in the sculpture. Fenty did point out that, “While FENTY’s cameo figure wears box braids tied in buns, the shoot highlights the endless artistic possibilities of afro-hair culture in sculpture.”

Rihanna is shining a light on women of color by resisting Eurocentric beauty standards. 

Instagram @badgalriri

What strikes us the most about the pop-star turned fashion designer and beauty mogul, is not just how Rihanna struck the right chord for women of color, but also how her Fenty empire has the potential for subversive praxis and resistance against Eurocentric beauty standards. 

Rihanna’s emphasis on inclusivity is foundational to what her labels stand for and has secured her success.

Instagram @badgalriri

Set against such white supremacist industry ideologies, Rihanna’s FENTY, places women of color at the center, as seen in her Cameo collection. With FENTY as well as Fenty Beauty and SAVAGE X FENTY, Rihanna demonstrates how dark-skinned beauty is foundational to her work, which incorporates Latinx, Asian, light and dark-skinned black, brown, and white women. Even the inclusion of hijabi, disabled and amputee models, expands her brands’ market.

The Cameo collection ranges in price from $340 to $530 USD and is already available for purchase via the FENTY website. The line joins past accessories created by the singer that included sunglasses and shoes. Rihanna hasn’t yet revealed whether she’ll be working on any other FENTY collections in the future, but as she’s shown with her music, makeup, and now clothing line, she’s always ready to use her platform to share meaningful messages. 

Spookify Your Nails With These Halloween-Themed Manicures

Fierce

Spookify Your Nails With These Halloween-Themed Manicures

Any nail polish obsessed person will tell you that an outfit isn’t complete without a fierce manicure. However, a basic French tip isn’t going to cut it during the spookiest time of the year. Instead, the month of October inspires so much creativity that it can turn any basic witch’s manicure into a haunting work of art.

With this in mind, we searched social media for the most gorgeously scary and artistic Halloween-inspired nail art that we could find. What we came up with will have you nixing your usual nail art and booking an appointment for an extra creepy makeover for your manicure.

1. The monster mashup.

Instagram / @maglinnails

The gang’s all here. Frankenstein’s Monster, the Bride of Frankenstein, skeletons and ghosts, oh my! This party of creepy creatures was created by Los Angeles nail artist and educator, MagLin. We love the severe point of these stiletto nails and the sharp edge they give this look.

2. It’s alive!

Instagram / @nailart_bygracie

OG monster man, Frankenstein’s Monster is featured on this gorgeous nail art by Nail Art by Gracie. This set was created with traditional nail polish with the addition of acrylic paint to provide the most haunting details. The bolts of lighting framing the monster gives these nails an especially theatrical look.

3. Fortune is at the tips of your fingers.

Instagram / @missbettyrose

Australian celebrity nail artist, Miss Betty Rose, created this Tarot card-inspired manicure. With delicate white lines against a background of black, these nails are perfect for all you brujas out there.

4. A Christmas nightmare.

Instagram / @maglinnails

“Boys and girls of every age, would you like to see something strange?” Nail artist MagLin also created this “The Nightmare Before Christmas” set. Jack Skeleton is featured against a metallic peacock-colored background along with some fine details from his sharp suit.

5. Glitter bomb.

  Instagram / @marias_nagelfix

There’s no better time for a whole lot of glitter than Halloween! This manicure created by Swedish nail artist, Marias Nagelfix, sports orange glitter nail polish along with painted blood, fire and severe black slash marks.

6. Soft Autumn vibes.

 Instagram / @yesicasnails

Fall is an aesthetic wonderland. The beautiful colors and the smells of Autumn make it such a unique time of year. Californian nail art influencer, Yesica’s Nails, created this lovely set. Touches of gold, the use of black and tiny crystals enhance the warm oranges and yellows used to capture the Fall.

7. Pennywise the nail art.

Instagram / @maglinnails

“We all float down here.” We think it’s safe to say that the original “IT” gave our generation a totally valid fear of clowns. Those brave enough to embrace this fear might enjoy this nail art by MagLin. While we’re definitely impressed, we prefer to go clown-free on our manicures.

8. It’s scary how cute these are.

Instagram / @xou_arteentusmanos

Who says all Halloween manicures need to be spooky? This set designed by Mexico-based Arte En Tus Manos is delicate and simple but incredibly adorable. Friendly ghosts and black cats are undoubtedly all about that Halloween spirit.

9. The most fabulous spiders you will ever see.

Instagram / @home_of_deva

White, gold and crystals aren’t something you usually associate with spiders but this set makes it work. Designed by Canadian nail artist Priscilla van Uden from the Home of Deva, this set will make any Halloween costume look extra fabulous.

10. On Halloween, we wear pink.

Instagram / @niraartist

Pink isn’t usually a color we associate with Halloween but this set makes us dig the idea of it. Skeletons, bats, spider webs and roses cover these nails in a design made by nail and tattoo artist Nira Artist.

11. Boo!

Instagram / @xou_arteentusmanos

Another cute design by Arte En Tus Manos, this one features adorable Pac-Man-esque ghosts. The repetition of the orange and white ghosts makes for an interesting and understated pattern.

12. A haunted house.

Instagram / @gigisnailstudio

This nail set establishes a spooky scene — a strange house, surrounded by bats and bare trees against an Autumn sunset. Created by nail artist GiGi’s Nail Studio, this set also uses a shiny gold leaf and dark blue nail paint to create beautiful accent nails.

13. Fit for an evil queen.

Instagram / @diamond_nail_design

“Mirror, mirror on the wall.” Tell the world that you’re the fairest of them all with Evil Queen-inspired nails. This set was created by English nail tech, Kelly Hamby. Her poisoned apple is an especially haunting detail.

14. Ouija, are you with me?

Instagram / @polishmeprettynailbar

Ouija has a popular place in pop culture especially during spooky season. Is it just a game or a portal to the spirit world? We don’t have the answer to that but this set does make the Ouija board its star. The addition of a Death’s head hawkmoth makes this manicure extra menacing.