By NAN ET Editor
News Americas, BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, Tues. Aug. 8, 2017: For another year, sexy Bajan star Rihanna made global headlines for her sizzling costume she donned for Barbados’ Grand Kadooment Monday, that marked the end of the 2017 Crop Over season. But who is the designer behind the multi-millionaire singer, actress and entrepreneur’s costume? Here are ten things you should know:
1: Rihanna’s chosen costume designer again for 2017 is none other than self taught designer, Lauren Austin.
2: Austin was born in Trinidad but lives in Barbados now with her husband.
3: She was also a nail and make-up artist and personal stylist.
4: Austin calls herself a “trendsetter” who started her career in a nail salon and moved on with a regional music company where she worked with prominent Caribbean stars Beenie Man, Shazelle and Sarah Marks.
5: It was only after she moved to Barbados did she decided to hone her skills in order to develop her own beauty-based business. Building upon her training with Sacha Cosmetics, she completed a course with Arlene Villarule and quickly impressed her growing clientele with her unique style and applications.
6: It wasn’t until 2013 that she decided to tap into her raw designing talent and she established what has now become one of the most sought-after Crop Over bands, Zulu International.
7: But after Zula thought her designs were too “naked,” she launched Aura and her first client was Rihanna. The star put Austin on the map and continues to her a repeat client to this day, helping Austin’s designs to continue to capture global media attention and publicity and gaining interest from other international celebrities and socialites.
8: Since 2015 she has paired up with agency manager, Matthew Ashby, and is presently expanding Aura to other markets.
9: The Aura team set itself apart by developing not just great designs but an all-inclusive luxury alternative to the traditional band experience including premium food and drinks all day long while being treated to an air-conditioned cool down bus. The VIP packages includes a VIP music truck, bar, ultra premium libations, VIP photographer and videographer among many other amenities.
10: And Rihanna is definitely enjoying the “Aura” experience again this year for “crawpova ’17,” promoting the brand all over Instagram along with her costume above.