Just days after the 2023 Oscars, one of the industry’s most influential and groundbreaking stylists, Law Roach, announced his retirement via Instagram. Roach’s career spanned over two decades. He was marked by his ability to push boundaries and challenge traditional notions of beauty and style.
Roach’s now-deleted Instagram post left little to the imagination, posting just a giant red stamped graphic of the word “RETIRED.” However, his caption stated, “My Cup is empty… thank you to everyone who’s supported me and my career over the years.” […] If this business were just about the clothes I would do it for the rest of my life but unfortunately it’s not! The politics, the lies and false narratives finally got me! You win… I’m out.”
Roach’s journey to becoming a top stylist took time and effort. Growing up on the South Side of Chicago, he began selling and dealing with vintage clothing, which eventually transitioned into a styling career. His ability to mix high-end fashion with streetwear was a signature in creating a unique and edgy aesthetic that was so appealing to younger generations.
While most notably known for styling his array of high-profile clients like Zendaya, Celine Dion, and Bella Hadid, he also made a massive commitment to making the fashion industry a more diverse and inclusive sphere, often choosing to dress clients who felt underrepresented or mistreated by the fashion industry.
In an interview with Vogue, Roach cleared up some of the rumors surrounding his retirement, saying, “I’m not saying I’m retiring from fashion. I love fashion. I love the businesses, and I love being creative. What I’m retiring from is the celebrity styling part of it: the being in service and at service of other people. That’s what I’m retiring from, yeah.”
Roach describes himself as a storyteller, using clothes as words to convey particular messages or images to an audience. He also spoke about how difficult it was to be in an industry as a gay black man. Climbing the ranks in a notoriously harsh industry created suffering. “I’m very grateful that I’ve been able to move and climb in this industry the way I have. But I can’t say I didn’t do that without suffering. And I think as Black people in this country, it’s embedded in us to suffer, right? We feel that to be successful, we have to suffer.”
While Law Roach is stepping back from the celebrity styling side of fashion, his career is far from over. Having already walked as a model in the Hugo Boss show, he plans to continue teaching and growing the fashion industry to reach a more expansive realm of people.
Featured image via StyleCaster.