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  • Writer's pictureJoy Blenman

Carnival Makeup and the History of Caribana

A girl wearing colourful carnival makeup.
Vibrant Carnival Makeup Featuring the Zulu Palette

Today would have been Kadoonment Day in Barbados and Caribana Monday in Toronto. While we cannot attend events in person, nevertheless, we can still take the time to celebrate the vibrancy of Caribbean Culture. Check out my latest YouTube video - a tutorial on carnival makeup, below.

What is the History of Caribana (Toronto Caribbean Carnival)?

So I am sure you have seen beautiful Caribana costumes on your timeline before, but what is carnival really about? Read below to learn key facts about this colorful festival.

A Rich History ✨: The festival was created in 1967 by the Caribbean Cultural Committee (CCC), a community group formed as part of Canada’s centennial celebration. The CCC created Caribana as a way to bring together West Indian immigrants and showcase the rich Caribbean culture in Canada. Caribana transported the vibe of Caribbean carnivals to Toronto.

A Huge Economic Impact💰: Caribana has a massive impact on Toronto’s local economy.

The event brings more than 1 million people and approximately $400 million into the city each summer.

A Major Impact on the Music Industry 🎶 : Each year, the biggest soca/calypso/chutney artists debut new carnival tracks. Caribana is huge for the Caribbean music industry, and lets’ face it, the Caribbean music industry, in turn, affects the global music industry.

Ever notice how every year the Top40 summer songs have a Caribbean beat? (Think One Dance by Drake, Lean On by Major Lazer and Despacito by Justin Bieber). The list goes on, but you get my point :p.

Check out some of my fav Caribbean DJs

@socaprince@deejaypuffy@djprivateryan to stay updated on the latest Caribbean tunes.

Colourful Costumes and Sweet Vibes: Each year, mas bands custom create colourful beaded costumes by hand. Some of the top Toronto mas bands are @cnzinc, @teamsaldenah , @torontorevellers, @tribalcarnival . For more awesome carnival content, check out my friend @melrickson ‘s page—she designs costumes for mas bands worldwide.

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