In celebration of Black History Month, NYLON is running a spotlight series called UNAPOLOGETIC. Every day, we’ll celebrate different aspects of black culture through profiles, interviews, roundtables, reviews, videos, and op-eds. #Blacklivesmatter and we hold that truth to be self-evident.

It can feel overwhelming merely living and breathing while black. We wanted to find a way to send an uplifting message of our own, so we asked 16 black creatives to share one piece of advice they would tell a black kid living in America today. Click through the gallery bellow and let their words sink in. 

If you want to continue to celebrate UNAPOLOGETIC with us, we're selling some limited-edition merchandise at the NYLONshop; 100 percent of the proceeds will be donated to #BlackLivesMatter.

Photo by Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images

"There's two important things that you must do so that not only you succeed, but everybody that's close to you succeeds and you can make your whole environment succeed—everywhere you go should be prosperous and should be blessed. You gotta focus on the education and all the education is information that somewhere, somehow, sometime, someday you want to have to utilize that information or the skills you used to get it. The second thing is, look deep down inside of yourself and not be ashamed to do what you're passionate about. I don't care if you like to color, if you want to do ballet, if you want to tap dance, and if you want to play the piano, don't care if people tease you and tell you that's corny and that's a sucker and only sissies do that. You gotta find your passion, is the key to your deliverance. But it must be empowered by that education. All of you young people, whether you like it or not, the education is valuable because the information you receive and the process you go through of learning that will be a key to assist you with whatever your talent or passion is. And then, and only then, will you see change in your life."- Darryl 'DMC' McDaniels