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Q&A with Allure Editor, Jihan Forbes

Every so often in your publicity career, you come across a journalist that you know is one to watch: Allure Digital Editor Jihan Forbes is definitely a force to be reckoned with. Not only is she an amazing media contact that is genuinely interested in learning about new brands for the beauty bible, but Jihan is funny, resourceful, kind and intelligent. Connecting with her on a conversational level during a couple of our Summer 2021 Clubhouse chats underscored all of that. Plus, turned out she was also warm and open to invitations from PR folks like ourselves. *Sigh* Can we clone her?

Always happy to engage and share, Jihan was kind enough to allow us to ask her some post-Clubhouse questions that could allow our team and clients to better understand what makes her tick, what moves the needle for her editorially and, how the hell can we land Allure?

What are you currently covering at Allure?

I cover a wide range of beauty topics, but these days I’m focusing a lot on beauty as it relates to a larger cultural conversation.

What’s important to you as an editor at Allure?

Being sure I’m creating content that is all-encompassing, considering the diversity of the people in the world, and making beauty accessible to them.

What’s important to you personally?

Honesty — whether that’s coming from an individual or a brand. Education and knowledge are also important.

What are three things brands should be paying attention to?

I think it’s important for brands, particularly when a tragedy happens, to take stock and make sure that before they put up a graphic to support certain communities, they’re actively supporting those communities. We’re beyond putting a black or yellow square on the timeline. People want to see real action, not just public gestures. 

Something that I pay attention to, as someone who Gen Z might consider “old,” is where the certain trends/phrases/etc brands want to lean into for marketing purposes came from. It can create a great opportunity to amplify creators who would otherwise be erased. 

I think a huge thing brands need to pay attention to is creating less waste. I know it might possibly be cheaper to keep to the old ways of doing things, but when I look at the sheer amount of products that I receive (which is a LOT), then I think about how many exist in the world and are not being recycled, you start to fall into a hole. There are lots of brands going the sustainable route, but I would really like to see more. Like, instead of doing a promotion once a year where the bottles are made from recycled plastic, why not do that year-round?

What is your biggest piece of advice to brands starting off?

Make sure you have a fully thought-out vision before you do anything.

What are your favorite non-profits and why?

I’m not sure if they’re nonprofit, but I do like the Clara Lionel Foundation. Rihanna just seems and behaves like a person who really cares about helping other people, and I love that energy.

Editor’s note: The Clara Lionel Foundation is a 501(c)3 Organization – learn more about them here.

What are the biggest myths about the skincare industry?

That if a product is more expensive, that means it’s better. That can be true in some cases, but not every case.

What big beauty trends do you see coming?

I think even after the pandemic, people are going to be wearing lip color more often since we’ve been wearing masks for so long. Veneers are also at their height, and what goes up must come down, so I think within the next few years, we’ll be seeing people favoring teeth that look more natural instead of pristine and perfect.

As we always say, if you expect journalists to be genuinely interested in your product, you have to be genuinely interested in what they are interested in, especially when it comes to their assignments and beats. Jihan covers a wide range of topics for Allure and we recommend reading her work regularly. Connect with her on LinkedIn and if you follow her on Instagram (she’s @itsjihanforbes, btw), don’t DM her with a pitch – read her bio.

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