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PHOTOGRAPHED BY GEORDY PEARSON

Introducing: Music's Bold New Stars

Not to state the obvious, but beauty is a high priority at Refinery29: We cover it all, from the latest trends to the most innovative products to the gurus who share their hard-earned advice. But, to us, beauty involves much more than what meets the eye. The passion, the quirks, and the unique point of view of every woman we admire — that's what real beauty is made of.

So, to celebrate this ever-evolving concept, we're showcasing 12 women who challenge convention. That's why we teamed up with the beauty trailblazers at Revlon for our second installment of Beauty Nation: The New Provocateurs. You’ve met fashion’s rising stars; now, we’re shining a spotlight on some of the fiercest up-and-comers in the music biz.

Up ahead, you’ll get an exclusive look at 12 of the most boundary-pushing singers, songwriters, producers, and DJs out there. Whether they're baring their souls in a poetic piece of lyrical genius or shredding riffs that could blow the roof off Barclays Center, these women are shaking things up with their daring looks, their unconventional sounds, and their fierce determination. Read on, listen up, and discover the beautiful ladies behind some of music’s boldest sounds.

Venus X

BN_PostImage1_Venus
Venus X is so legit. She's credited with creating an entirely new genre of party music: Ghe20 G0th1k (pronounced "ghetto gothic"). Since 2009, the New York-based DJ, née Jazmin Venus Soto, has been hosting events with her unique brand of nightlife at spaces throughout Brooklyn and Manhattan — as a result, she's helped bring a face-melting mash-up of hip-hop, trance, and electronica to the mainstream. In the past few years, she has also become a fixture at art and fashion events, including New York Fashion Week and Art Basel in Miami.

Part Dominican and part Ecuadorian, Venus’ looks are an undeniable part of her appeal — she’s regularly referred to as a tastemaker, thanks to her unique street style (which includes everything from dog collars to Indian embellishments) and constantly evolving hair. And, this spring, she landed a gig as the face of Dr. Martens’ new line. Get used to seeing her around.

Revlon_BeautyNation_PullQuote_VenusX All products by Revlon. Revlon ColorStay Lip Liner in Chocolate, $7.99; Revlon ColorBurst™ Matte Balm in Complex, $8.99; Age Defying CC Cream, $13.99; Powder Bronzer, $9.99; Bold Lacquer by Grow Luscious Length + Volume Mascara, $7.99.

BN_PostImage2_VenusPHOTOGRAPHED BY GEORDY PEARSON.
The most daring thing I’ve ever done
"Going to Paris with MIA on, like, three hours notice to DJ and sing back-up for her, when we’d never worked together before. She had come to the parties that I DJ, Ghe20 G0th1k, and she reached out and told me she needed a DJ for a Balenciaga performance…in France. We met up for lunch, talked about what she wanted to do, and then they confirmed the gig at 5 p.m. I was on a plane to Paris at 11 p.m. It was wild."

How I've made my own way in the industry
"There’s a serious power structure in the urban-entertainment world — it’s all about who you’re seen with or sleeping with. I’ve been doing this for four years, and I make pretty great money. To be able to do that without the help of a boy’s cosign or some kind of boyfriend situation that got me lots of followers on Twitter, it’s a big deal. And, I think that’s why a lot of people respect me. It’s not that I wouldn’t involve myself with someone in the industry; I just wouldn’t do it for the sake of advancing my career. At the end of the day, there aren’t a lot of female DJs. And, of the ones there are, some are just eye candy. They don’t know how to use their equipment. Their boyfriends get them gigs. They’re only making it harder for the rest of us."

What I wear to feel powerful onstage
"I love wearing red when I DJ. It looks sooo good onstage. And, I usually put on a choker. That’s my signature look. It makes me feel sexy. I think it’s hot. I think it gives people the message that I’m a little wild, even if I’m being a nerd behind the decks."

GetTheLook_Venus

A. Golde Multicolor Top; Tripp Yellow Plaid Jacket; Topshop Red Slit Mini Skirt; Tibi White Mules, $375, available at Tibi. Hair by Bethany Brill; Makeup by Ashleigh Ciucci; Styled by Laura Pritchard
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