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2017 Vanity Fair Oscar Party Hosted By Graydon Carter - Arrivals

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When she walked into the room, every head turned, and every person stopped talking. Me included.

Mainly because the beauty emerged from a door that we didn’t expect to open, but also because we were surprised that she popped up suddenly without fanfare or announcement. 

I mean, she was – and is – the incomparable Gabrielle Union. 

As Gabrielle sashayed to the middle of the room, rocking a chic and flirty brown Michael Kors turtleneck dress and fringe, the surprised crowd quickly grabbed their phones and snapped pics. The actress-turned-author greeted us, smiled, and then posed as cell phone shutters went off and the professional photographer in the room directed her. 

“Well, this is kind of awkward,” Gabrielle joked, moving from standing with her hands leisurely to her sides to poking her hip out and playing with her tousled bob. It wasn’t working the camera – she is a pro at that. What was different was the location of her vogue – she was essentially playing with her hair in front of logos that read “Menopause.”

Celebrity Sightings In New York City - November 09, 2023

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But for Gabrielle Union, doing so is kind of on-brand. 

The 51-year-old frequently uses her platforms to talk about taboo and complex issues. Just check her books, “You Got Anything Stronger” and “We’re Going to Need More Wine.”

She also has no problem making jokes about herself or her experiences. Her Instagram stories are evidence of that. 

And her candor comes all the while slaying to the ‘gawds, having a body many would kill for, and holding the coordinates for the fountain of youth. Gabrielle is our good girlfriend, fashion inspiration, and on-screen she-ro.

After taking pictures in front of the room, Gabrielle surprised us again by quickly returning to the doors she initially burst out of. Ten minutes later, she re-emerged in a different fashionable outfit.

This time, Gabrielle donned a sophisticated tan suit by Lafayette 148 with a high turtleneck and simple jewelry. An ensemble – and outfit change – that was also on brand for the fashion killer.

Gabrielle Union Clear Blue

Source: Courtesy of Jenny Elias / Jenny Elias, MSL Agency

“Evolving, changing, I dress for the moment, you know,” Gabrielle told HelloBeautiful that day when describing her style. “So sometimes I dress for feeling like how I feel inside, which is very casual, comfortable, fly, without all the extra bells and whistles. And sometimes I feel like a princess. And sometimes, I want to push the fashion limits. Sometimes, I want to go straight sexy, basically naked. But again, it really depends on the mood I am in.”

HelloBeautful got to catch up with Gabrielle Union – amid the menopause logos – while she promoted her newest partnership with Clearblue. Looking to “spill the tea” on and debunk myths about menopause, the “Being Mary Jane” actress invited a small group of influencers, journalists, and medical practitioners for a timely discussion. During the event, an OBGYN and representative from Clearblue joined in on the presentation.

“If I can share about my outfits, I can share my experiences with menopause and help women feel less alone,” Gabrielle told the intimate audience as we sipped tea and ate finger sandwiches.

Gabrielle Union Event Table Scape

Source: Courtesy of HelloBeautiful Writer / Lauren E. Williams

Gabrielle Union spills the tea on menopause.

Gabrielle started perimenopause – the time when a woman’s period gradually stops – at age 37. She has dealt with hot flashes, hair loss, weight gain, brain fog, mood swings, and night sweats. 

However, open communication with her family, including her husband, Dwyane Wade, doctors, and herself, has helped her get a handle on the process. As has time “alone in her bathroom with Phyllis Hyman,” Gabrielle admits.

But just as important as communication is to her menopause management now, it wasn’t always that way. Gabrielle says her mother – who worked a lot – didn’t share information on menopause early on. When it came to complex topics, the Omaha native often turned to her sister, Tracy, for guidance.

So, Gabrielle also sees using her voice and advocacy now as a way to encourage other Black and Brown women to take ownership of their health. “Menopause is a subject we still often ignore, and it leaves women feeling confused, silenced, and completely unprepared,” says Gabrielle.

Clearblue’s new Menopause Stage Indicator is another tool to inform women. The Menopause Stage Indicator is a new test that allows women to test their FSH results and track symptoms in an app to help doctors better diagnose possible menopause stages.

She added, “Having a product like the Menopause Stage Indicator at my disposal would have been an eye-opening resource for me as I began searching for answers.”

Gabrielle Union and HB

Source: Lauren Williams / Lauren E. Williams

At the end of the tea, Gabrielle answered questions from HelloBeautiful one-on-one outside of the event space. Between jokes about her love affair with Loewe, getting sexy on date night, and wanting tacos, Gabrielle got even more candid about Black women demanding more from their doctors, learning about their insurance coverage, and prioritizing their health.

Gabrielle was beautiful, honest, multidimensional, and intentional. The starlet represents women going through perimenopause and menopause everywhere.


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What I Learned About Menopause While Having Tea With Gabrielle Union  was originally published on