When the worlds of music, fashion, entertainment, and philanthropy collide with a cause as crucial as heart health, you know something magical is happening. That’s precisely what unfolded on Wednesday, Jan. 31, at the American Heart Association’s 2024 Red Dress Collection Concert, a dazzling event that kicked off American Heart Month with a symphony of red gowns, soul-stirring music, and a united front against heart disease in women. This wasn’t just any gathering; it served as the American Heart Association’s Go Red for Women national marquee event. It was a celebration of progress, a testament to the power of collaboration, and a call to action to prioritize women’s heart health—all wrapped in a fashion-forward, musical extravaganza.
I had the amazing opportunity to attend this star-studded event, along with a few esteemed KISS USA executives and fellow team members. As the global leader in producing and distributing high-quality nail and lash products, KISS was proud to support this prestigious event, emphasizing the significance of heart health awareness for women and its vital role in transforming and saving lives. The global beauty brand strives to vigorously support the fight against heart disease, and their partnership with AHA is to help amplify their life-saving message. Keep scrolling for all the details of this dazzling night.
Held at the iconic Appel Room at Jazz at Lincoln Center in New York City, this year’s concert was extra special. Not only did it mark the beginning of American Heart Month, but it also celebrated a century of the American Heart Association’s lifesaving work. How remarkable—a hundred years of making hearts healthier and lives fuller. And what better way to commemorate this milestone than with an event that’s all about strength, style, and storytelling.
I spent a few moments chatting with some of the 2024 Class of Survivors who briefly shared their inspiring stories (and glam) with me. The American Heart Association’s Go Red for Women Class of Survivors are national volunteers selected to represent a diverse sisterhood of survivors, who actively, urgently and passionately champion the Go Red for Women movement. Often the surprising faces of cardiovascular disease, the survivors share their powerful stories to raise awareness of heart disease and stroke in women and inspire others to take charge of their health and well-being.
Meet the 2024 Go Red for Women Class of Survivors
The Go Red for Women Red Dress Collection Concert 2024
The evening was hosted by Sherri Shepherd, who shared her personal connection to heart disease. The Daytime Emmy Award-winning talk show host, comedian, actress, and best-selling author began the event by sharing her own connection with cardiovascular disease and spotlighting survivors and women’s health champions in attendance. It’s this personal touch that makes the Red Dress Collection Concert more than just an event; it becomes a platform for sharing stories, for connection, and for inspiration.
On a High Note
The music was nothing short of spectacular, with Mickey Guyton, a Grammy-nominated country music star, kicking off the concert in Ruthie Davis red platform heels. Dressed in Sergio Hudson and Monetre, she performed hits that resonated with everyone, making it clear why she’s considered a trailblazer in country music.
But the highlight of the evening was undoubtedly Demi Lovato’s powerhouse performance. Introduced by Damar Hamlin, whose story of surviving sudden cardiac arrest is both terrifying and inspiring, Lovato took to the stage with a presence that captivated us all. Wearing a Nicole + Felicia Couture custom gown on the red carpet and a custom Michael Ngo suit for her performance, she delivered hits that reminded us of her incredible talent and the power of music to bring us together.
The concert also served as a platform for showcasing the incredible fashion that the Red Dress Collection is known for. From Ana Navarro-Cárdenas in Alexander by Daymor to Yvonne Orji in House of Emil, the runway was a parade of celebrities and influencers united for a cause, each making a bold statement against cardiovascular disease, the number one killer of women.
KISS Heart Disease Goodbye
The real game-changer this year was the partnership with KISS USA. Talk about bringing glamour to a good cause! KISS took the idea of supporting heart health to a whole new level with their “Bring the Salon” experience, with a photo booth, glam stations, makeup artists, manicurists, and KISS gift bags filled with beauty goodies. It was a way to celebrate beauty and strength, inside and out, and a reminder that feeling good about yourself is a powerful form of self-care.
As I stood there among the stars, the survivors, and the champions of women’s heart health, I couldn’t help but feel a profound sense of connection and purpose. The Red Dress Collection Concert is more than just an event; it’s a movement, a celebration of the strides we’ve made in women’s health, and a reminder of the work that still lies ahead. It’s a night where fashion, music, and philanthropy come together in the most beautiful way, all in support of a cause that touches every one of us.
Annette DeVita-Goldstein, SVP of Global Marketing at KISS, captured the essence of the evening perfectly: “Despite cardiovascular diseases being the leading cause of death among women, less than half of women are aware that cardiovascular disease is their greatest health threat. By harnessing the unstoppable collective power of women, we are very proud to collaborate with such an iconic institution in support of an immensely important cause. At KISS, we’re passionate about helping women feel their best every day. Being able to contribute and participate in the American Heart Association’s Go Red for Women Red Dress Collection Concert is an honor for our entire company.”
As the evening came to a close, and the final notes of “Cool for the Summer” echoed through the Appel Room, I was reminded of the power of coming together, of sharing our stories, and of fighting for a future where heart disease is no longer a threat to our mothers, sisters, and daughters. Here’s to another century of progress, advocacy, and hope. Here’s to the heart of every woman.
About Go Red for Women
The American Heart Association’s signature initiative, Go Red for Women, is a comprehensive platform designed to increase women’s heart health awareness and serve as a catalyst for change to improve the lives of women globally. While the majority of cardiac events can be prevented, cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in women, claiming the lives of 1 in 3 women. For more than two decades, Go Red for Women has encouraged awareness. The movement harnesses the energy, passion and power of women to band together and collectively wipe out heart disease. It challenges them to know their risk for heart disease and take action to reduce their personal risk. It also gives them tools they need to lead a heart healthy life. The Go Red for Women movement is nationally sponsored by CVS Health, with additional support from national cause supporters. For more information, please visit GoRedforWomen.org