A Black British Beauty Blogger

Monday, 24 April 2017

NYX lip Pencils: Swatched on dark skin

NYX produce some of my favourite lip pencils hands down! 

The colour range is excellent and overall, the pigmentation is on point for this black woman.  I have a mixture of the long, slim and auto lip pencils.

When I was making my decision online of the shades I wanted to try I found it depressing that I couldn't really find the shades on someone with my skin tone and so thought it useful to swatch them in this post. Hopefully helping someone else #playitforward, 

I originally ordered the pencils from an American seller on eBay a few years ago when there wasn't a NYX presence in the UK. I fell in love with Current, Bloom, Dark Brown and Deep Purple.  I found myself re ordering my favourites and adding to the collection each time. 

Of course the main reasons for the popularity of these pencils are the fact that they are relatively cheep, accessible and credible dupes to MAC's lip liners. Unfortunately I have picked up a few duds: Pumpkin, Tangerine, Brown Cafe and Dolly Pink - all too light / patchy for my lips. That said I have  used the nib out of the overs, using them to alter lipstick shades that were slightly off (especially the purples / browns).  Expresso, Dark Brown and Cocca are my ride or die among the browns. I thought swatching MAC's Chestnut would be a useful point of reference for any dark skinned woman who, like me, love the bones of this shade (although not the price!). 
Nutmeg is also useful when used with peachy shades that are too light for me and I want to alter it so that I can wear the lipstick. 

Wednesday, 22 March 2017

Make Up Academy (MUA) Lip Liners

WOC, Swatch,

This is the second in my mini series on lip liners I am currently loving at the moment. I recently told you about the hyper pigmentation on my lips  resulting in my need for a good lip liner to support my love of lipstick. I could have jumped strait to my MAC collection but thought it best to go from the the cheapest to expensive. 

MUA has been doing good things for make up lovers in the UK. I love how they always seem to come out with new products to keep up with the Jones, sometimes surpassing them. Their lip primer is the business, eyebrow pencils darn good and their palettes are often good dupes for the current palette being hyped in the blogsphere.

These lip liners are pigmented, long-lasting and a steal at £1 each! I pick mine up at Superdrug.

I'm a firm fan of MUA. 

Sunday, 26 February 2017

Amazon (Random) Lip Liners - Surprisingly quite good

I'm always on the look out for lip liners that perform on my lips as I have dark pigmentation around the outside and a lighter shade in the middle. I can find that I have two different shades appearing on my lips as a result. With the colour variation on my lips I really need my lip liners to be pigmented. I often use the lip liner as a base for the lipstick, colouring in my whole lip and then applying lipstick, this has two benefits.....to keep the colour on for longer and to act as an almost colour primer for my lips, allowing the lipstick colour to appear as uniformed as possible. This post marks the first ina series for lip liners I am currently loving at the moment.

There had been a lot of chatter about a set of lip liners from Amazon that were both affordable and pigmented for a ridiculously cheap price.

Initially sceptical, I decided to try them as they were under £2 for a pack of 12. I was not expecting much but I was pleasantly surprised. I know that there has been some people complaining that they has received a poor colour mix in their order but I felt my order had a decent variation.

I received 12 lip liners in total, one black eyeliner and 11 were pigmented  lip liners. The funky lilac colour (no 4 along from the left) was the only drawback.

They lasted whilst I was eating or drinking; when I went to sharpen them they didn't flake or create a mess.

For the colour pigmentation, price and availability via Amazon I have to give these liners two thumbs up. 


Wednesday, 14 September 2016


L'Oreal Elvive Extraordinary Clay Pre- Shampoo Masque

The benefits of using clays such as Bentonite / Rhassoul / Kaolin to cleanse natural hair has been around of a while. Sadly I have not been able to locate any as I refused to pay a lot for something I was not sure how my hair (or eczema prone skin) would react, so sat on my fence until I happened upon L'Oreal Elvive Extraordinary Clay range at Superdrug. To be fair, L'Oreal and their advertising team had been promoting this new range for a hot minute and I had given it the side eye as I was not sure how it would cope with my hair type. However, seeing the special offer in-store convinced me that if it was a bust then I wouldn't be too out of pocket. 

How I used it

Natural HairI duly used it at my next wash day (three days after) as my hair had been limp, flaking and funky, crying out for some TLC.I try to pre-poo my hair at each wash and so treated the Pre- Shampoo Masque in the same manner, making sure to fully coat my hair from root to tip. 

The texture wasn't as scary as I thought - it didn't start crumbling all over the place - but went on like a thick conditioner. I took care to make sure that anything that I didn't want damaged was moved, removing all towels etc from the area but this proved to be unnecessary as it didn't stain anything as it was removed from my hair and bath with a healthy amount of H2O and gentle elbow grease. 

I left it on my hair for around six minutes, washing it out with warm water. I was pleased to see that my curls were popping at the back after use but my front section was slow on the uptake. Undeterred, I shampooed, clarified with ACV and went on to deep condition. I typically multi-task when deep conditioning,  washing out hair brushes or cleaning the house and this wash day was not exception. 
After 15 minutes I took of my shower cap (had to cut back on my carrier bags as the plastic tax was messing with my wash day experience) was left amazed at the curl action my hair was displaying. Each  strand was popping! My hair was super soft and felt clean. I had to do a L'Oreal flick in my mirror - 'cause the results were worth it (pun intended). My hair has remained baby soft, free of it's flaky phase and I have noticed that I am not having to use so much product in my hair after wash day. I feel that I had some serious build up that not even my African Black Soap could reach so this clay masque has been a welcome addition to my regime already.

Wednesday, 6 July 2016

eBay Makeup Brush Dupes

You’ve been in the shop, fell in love with the new makeup brush your favourite Makeup brand has just launched but quickly fall into a post-shop funk when you realise the price of your new heart’s desire. A quick search on ebay will soon have your heart return to a normal rhythm.

NARS Yachiyo Kabuki Brush was like a work of art when I first touched it. I loved the texture of the handle and the softness of the brush. In store £43, ebay £1.58.

bareMinerals Perfecting Face Brush impressed me with its innovative design, the well to deposit liquid foundation just made sense to me. In store £24 /£1.38.

MACs 163 Flat Contour Brush seemed like an excellent way to speed up my contour application and keep it sharp when required. In store £28 / £2.55.

These brushes have been around for a while and there are tons of reviews online to help you learn more. I would recommend that you try ebay, taking the normal necessary precautions, first. The unfortunate situation is many of the sellers are based in China and so you will have to wait at last three weeks for postage.  Spending an average of £1.84 on a brush I wasn’t overly concerned if it arrived and was a dud, however it has been my experience that these brushes have surpassed my expectations, standing up in application and cleaning – result.

Have you purchased any makeup brushes online, what has been your experience?

Tuesday, 6 October 2015

MAC Pure Orange Studio Finish Skin Corrector - a beauty must have

MAC Studio Finish Skin Corrector Pure Orange, Colour correction

MAC Pure Orange Studio Finish Corrector is one of those holy grail products for Black Women that encapsulates why I blog -sharing great products, particularly relevant to women who are of a similar shade to me.

Initially colour correction passed me by as I saw women of a lighter hue using greens, purples etc, prompting me to dismiss it. I grew frustrated a I saw peach correctors being touted as being applicable for black/ tan skin. When I went to swatch these peach correctors I noticed that they didn't do anything for my hyperpigmentation.

MAC's Pure Orange Studio Finish Corrector is a game changer.  It  may seem a little bit scary upon first glance, but to all my Black Women NW45 and above with hyperpigmentation, we need this in our makeup arsenal. The little pot packs a punch as a gentle swatch provides enough to cover even the deepest hyperpigmentation. I use it to cover around my mouth and eye area where I have panda eyes. I love how it starts off as a scary red / orange then it settles down to looking, normal. I find that this helps me use less foundation and concealer. Creasing has not been an issue around my eyes and I am able to use eyeshadow without the orange colour interfering in other shades. 

MAC describe it as:
A specially tinted, full coverage and long-wearing water-resistant corrector.
...full coverage and long-wearing water-resistant corrector. Goes on smooth and dries to a natural finish. This emollient-rich formula is unique in that it's highly pigmented and only requires a dab to correct discolouration and conceal tattoos, dark circles and blemishes.  

Colour Correction: A quick, brief background
Image borrowed from Google
Colour correction essentially is used to correct or 'neaurailse' problematic areas on the face.
Black Women, especially those of us who are rich / deep in tone, tend to suffer with (blue) hyper-pigmentation  around our eyes and mouth. In this era of Kim K we would use a concealer to brighten / highlight under our eyes but, by applying a bit of basic colour theory, we can seek to overcome these issues in a sympathetic and, in my opinion, natural way than a simple use of a concealer. Often the hyper-pigmentation is blue in colour in Black Women  and as a primary colour, its opposite (complimentary) on the colour wheel is orange. Therefore if we need to neutralise blue, we need an orange to do so.

I definitely recommend Destiny Godley  youtube videos on colour correction  for anyone still confused. 

Have you become a fan of colour correction?

Sunday, 4 October 2015

Wilko's Premium Make Up Brushes - great buy

Wilko's, Makeup Brushes, Wilko Premium Powder Brush

Wilkos Premium make up brushes have become a firm favourite of mine since last year. A surprise find on the high street due to the truly affordable price point (avg £4) and reasonable availability, I am surprised that more fuss has been made of these 100% synthetic brushes. 

Wilko Premium Make Up Brushes, Wilko Premium Powder Brush
Wilko Premium Powder Brush
I was initially drawn in by the powder brush on their display whilst in store; it called out to be to be touched it was soooo dense. I kid you not I was stood there for a good while stroking the brush to see if any of the bristles came off in my hand, I couldn’t believe how soft and thick it was. I quickly came back to repurchase as many as I could find once I got home and tried out the powder brush , using it to apply my bronzer. Gorgeous. The dense bristles distributed the bronzer almost better than if the sun had kissed my applied foundation itself!  I found the only draw back was the stippling brush which was a bit confusing as it was both too soft and scratchy when applying makeup. Undeterred, I have found a use for it – to apply my elf HD blushers which are very pigmented and need to be distributed quickly and evenly on my face. 

I deliberately wanted to wait to see if these brushes would deteriorate after use, but after a year of use I haven't seen so much as a single bristle escape. 


Wilko Premium Powder Brush,
Top to bottom: Powder, Stippler, Blusher, Smokey Eye Duo

Have you come accross any surpise beauty finds that arent't being hyped?