For every momentous occasion in our new Vice President's life, Kamala Harris has donned a signature accessory: A pearl necklace. When graduating from Howard University, Harris had a single strand of white pearls—a nod to her sorority, Alpha Kappa Alpha, where pearls are an important part of the group's foundation story. When receiving the COVID-19 vaccination and swearing into Congress, Harris accessorized with black Tahitian pearls. Today, as she takes the vice presidential oath of office, the first woman and person of color to hold her new position, she is wearing a string of pearls created by Puerto Rican jeweler Wilfredo Rosado.
She's not the only one. A Facebook group called "Wear Pearls on Jan 20th, 2021 (opens in new tab)" invites women and girls across the world to join Vice President Harris, and wear pearls in solidarity. For her supporters, Harris' necklaces have become a symbol of female empowerment.
On November 7, when Harris gave her victory speech to a crowd of cheering supporters, she said, "But while I may be the first woman in this office, I will not be the last." For the young girls watching, she told them, "Dream with ambition, lead with conviction and see yourselves in a way that others may not simply because they've never seen it before."
Today, as more young women and girls see the nation's first woman of color become Vice President and imagine themselves one day following in her footsteps, they might just be wearing pearls, too.
Tatjana Freund is a Beauty Commerce Writer, covering makeup, skincare, and haircare products and trends. She's a fan of vodka tonics and creepy Wikipedia pages.
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