By Takiya La’Shaune Smith
With the ease of a seasoned speaker, the complete grace of Southern charm and the friendly warmth of the girl next door, American Idol winner Candice Rickelle Glover is way more than just the girl next door. Her humble demeanor, positive attitude and friendly banter would make even the most socially inept individual comfortable to be in her presence. Her bubbly, expressive tones are reminiscent of two
girlfriends’ chitter chatter on any given day, and her laughter is just as welcoming as the soothing, sultry sound of her voice — a voice that was destined to be heard, even and long after she was indirectly told that it should be silenced.
“During Season 9 of Idol, Simon basically told me that I wasn’t going to be anything,” Candice said.
That being three seasons ago and in the not-so distant past, Candice speaks positively of what the potentially negative experience did for her: “I took that into the next year as something that would help me, and I kept it with me as motivation all the way through Season 12.”
Her offered words of encouragement not only speak mounds to the masses but helped her in her personal journey as she shares with others the ambition to “take negativity as motivation and let it help you instead of hurt you.”
Growing up as “a bit of a tomboy,” Candice played kickball and football with the boys. She describes herself as a fun-loving person, and credits her parents for teaching her this real, down-to-earth, relatable side.
Now a role model to many young girls and women worldwide, Candice states that “it’s an honor that people would ever say that they want to be like me … I feel that they are connecting with the fun-loving side as well as the humble person my parents have raised me to be.”
Candice speaks of her three year journey in which she transformed from “literally just a girl who could sing” into a woman who “came into her own.”
“It didn’t happen overnight, but it happened.”
In sharing the less glamorous and judgmental views of the public, online throughout the world and while on television, Candice said that staying true to herself was what she determined and set out to do. Quickly embracing those who embraced her, Candice reveals that she was never under the scrutiny of the producers, judges or those on the show, and was never told to lose weight or look a certain way. Against public pressure and formulated opinions, Candice said, “I stayed true to who I was and didn’t try to fit in.”
With a clear message, Candice learned from her earlier mistakes of attempting to appease others by “trying to look like a star. I went over the top and it wasn’t genuine.”
She said, “There is no certain way that you have to look to be in the public eye. No matter who you are or what you do, that should touch people’s hearts.”
February 18, 2014, is the scheduled release date of her much-anticipated album, Music Speaks. Candice speaks passionately about its first released single, “I Am Beautiful,” an inspirational and self-motivating song that lets us know that who we are, individually, is more than enough. Written by songwriter Jaden Michaels, Candice said she is “proud of the song” as she worked with Michaels on Idol during weekly visits to give her personal input, influence and experience about what she wanted her music to do. “All girls go through not feeling good or pretty enough … every girl at a young age can relate to liking a boy and feeling rejection,” Candice shares of her own personal experiences.
Now being older and wiser, Candice realizes “people are going to form their opinions” about everything from “how I wore my hair and how I dressed.” She said people feel that their opinion is fact. “The simple fact is that I knew I had a gift to share with the world, I realized I wasn’t perfect, but I was like this is me, take it or leave it!” Overcoming initial discouragement, Candice held strong to “being true to who I am, instead of someone else.”
When asked to leave a final empowering thought on the hearts and minds of not only women worldwide, but specifically and especially to friends, sisters, mothers, daughters, aunts and women of her hometown of St. Helena Island, Candice said, “We shouldn’t be so hard on ourselves regarding beauty and realize that beauty is not what we think it is. I was told that my skin is too dark, my nose is weird, I’m not small enough … you have to feel beautiful before anyone else thinks you are. Love yourself before anyone else can. Love yourself and be comfortable in who you are. It took me a long time to realize this, but I know it now. Realize that the talents you have and who you are, no one can take that away.”
Takiya La’Shaune Smith, licensed cosmetologist, mentor and owner of Beautique Lash & Brow, is an author and beauty columnist promoting inner and outer beauty, self-esteem, preservation and awareness. Follow her blog at www.blb-boutiques.com, find her on Facebook at www.facebook.com/TakiyaLSmith, email her at email@example.com or contact her at (843) 263-0426.
Beauty Q&A with American Idol Winner Candice Glover
Takiya La’Shaune Smith: What is your absolute beauty must-have?
Candice Glover: One thing I have to have is my eyelashes! I can do my full face of makeup but if I don’t have my eyelashes then my face will feel completely naked. There’s just something pretty about eyelashes and how they make your eyes pop! Your eyes are one of the first things people see when they look at you and that you want to be noticeable.
Takiya La’Shaune Smith: What are you most comfortable wearing, whether traveling or performing?
Candice Glover: I’m most comfortable in a blazer or jacket and jeans. I’m not really into dresses, and during the Idol Tour we bought a $500 gold sequined dress only to have it cut and tailored into a blazer to stand out and be true to myself.
Takiya La’Shaune Smith: If you had to choose, beauty quick pick only one: lip gloss, mascara, nail polish or concealer?
Candice Glover: I would feel weird if I have on concealer and no gloss. I can do without mascara or polish, so it would be between concealer and lip gloss. I would have to go with lip gloss!