Nicki Minaj has brought us three albums, seven fragrances, and (part of) Tidal. It’s an open secret that stars make most of their money from endorsements, but Nicki has stated that she likes to be involved in “every aspect of the decision-making process” when it comes to her fragrances. Through the special editions and the limited releases, she’s clearly built a Minajesty of her own, but can fans get the Pinkprint-level empowerment from her beauty line that we get from her music? Let’s investigate:
Nicki’s first fragrance, released to coincide with her single Va Va Voom, was a floral, bubblegum reflection of the pink-wigged Barbie we first met in 2010. It’s juicy, playfully fruity, with basic notes like vanilla, musk, blackberry, and raspberry. Nicki was sweeter too:
Taylor Swift is giving me EVERYTHING w/this performance right now! Barbz, how f'ing cute is she???????
— NICKI MINAJ (@NICKIMINAJ) September 7, 2012
Pink Friday Special Edition (April 2013)
The same month this limited edition fragrance dropped, Nicki told Elle, “I’m so attached to my pink lipstick, it’s hard… to go out in front of the camera, without pink lips or big ol’ lashes – you know, nothing – I felt naked.” Over a year after “Starships” and with two featured songs on the Billboard Hot 100, Nicki is seducing us with pinks and sweets; she’s putting us in grapefruit, apple, raspberry, and honeysuckle.
Minajesty (August 2013)
“There is a sexy power behind having self-confidence,” Nicki told People when Minajesty came out, “I want this fragrance to invite my Barbz to celebrate their glamorous side, live in the moment and be outrageous knowing their true power comes from within.” Minajesty also smelled like “true lust,” a beautiful turn of phrase every single girl needs in her vocabulary. Aside from Drake, who wouldn’t shut up about being in love with her, Nicki was probably too busy building her Minajesty to date anyone that summer.
Pink Friday Deluxe Edition (November 2013)
This limited edition redux of the Pink Friday scent debuted just in time for all our gold-painted-Nicki Minaj-shaped holiday shopping needs. It features “more luxurious” ingredients, although the composition is largely the same – raspberries and blackberries, musk, wood. The true luxury comes in the cost: $75 but with a “$1000 value”(???). It was the right time for Nicki to go deluxe: she was #4 on Forbes’ list of top hip-hop earners for 2013, beating Kanye West, Lil Wayne, and Drake. Two albums, $29 million value.
Minajesty Exotic Edition (July 2014)
This “summertime, fun, fruity” scent was available for one day on HSN. “I’m on good behavior, I’m on HSN,” says Nicki during this hour of must-see television, “The bottle is a naughty bondage lady who’s having a darker moment.” Nicki wasn’t: She was on tour, she and Beyoncé’s “Flawless” remix was everywhere, she had just started dating Meek Mill. Her next fragrance was already being pre-sold with this one, the even darker…
Onika (September 2014)
As “Anaconda” prepared to climb the charts to its eventual peak at Billboard’s #2, Nicki enjoyed a summer of successes. She hosted the MTV European Music Video Awards, was the only respectable part of the ubiquitous Bang Bang, and did loads of press for the November release of The Pinkprint. She wrote that Onika “smells like angels in the garden of… perfection.” OK!
The Pinkprint (July 2015)
Nicki launched “The Pinkprint” on Good Morning America last week – a timely appearance following the Taylor Swift drama that has garnered a ton of (distracting) press for Nicki. Re$pect to her reps for recognizing this opportunity to use the drama – and the added attention of deep-pocketed and guilty Taylor Swift fans – to cash in. Not that Nicki needs any help from Tay or anyone else to make her millions; her “description” of the fragrance on Instagram says only, “This smells so good. It’s by far my best.”