Having a regimen that is uniquely yours that makes you feel your best self is a necessity.
Beauty is a broad term, but I think it connects to every part of ourselves. When we feel beautiful, we radiate that, hence why having an inside-out approach is what resonates most with me. Eating well, exercising, getting plenty of sleep, and being kind to ourselves all reflects in our skin, eyes and hair. Having a regimen that is uniquely yours that makes you feel your best self, is a necessity.
My approach to makeup is less is more! The Glossier boy brow & mascara with a fat application brush is usually all I need. Few things make me feel more femme and fierce than a burly brow.
With these small tweaks, I feel like an amped version of myself. A minimal, effortless, chic, natural look is one that’s hard to beat, and timeless. It’s a look that can age gracefully with you.
Pour la Peau
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If I’m being entirely honest, my favorite place to find beauty inspo is through my favorite influencers on Instagram! They always have new or interesting things to share from facial acupuncture (DYING to try), to new brands I haven’t heard of.
If we’re going with pure aesthetic, I’d have to say that Daria Werbowy & Zoe Kravitz are my beauty icons. Daria is the chic 30-something I aspire to be, and Zoe is the edgy yet tasteful version of myself I try to push for.
To reflect that, my makeup routine over the past few years has become much more minimal while my skincare routine has become more focused, with an emphasis on quality versus quantity.
If we’re talking about beauty brands, I’d have to say my favorite would be Odacite for skincare. I feel like I connect with their brand on a personal level. Not only are their products vegan, non-GMO, & organic, but their founder practices what she preaches. I just love their message all around: “to health and beauty”. My kind of company.
I also want to try Golde, another brand whose personal story I connect with. A woman of color and her partner started their own brand with the premise of inclusivity in the wellness community and an emphasis on a more holistic approach to health and skincare! I heard about them through an influencer I love and adore (@sophia_roe) on Instagram.
I hate the thought of investing money in a company who doesn’t care about their products or the effect it has on the environment or their customers. It’s all about doing our homework! To that effect, I try my best to stay away from big corporate brands: L'Oréal, Rimmel, Revlon, Maybelline, Olay… If you ever look at the ingredients on the back of their products, the list is MILES long. That’s not to be trusted. Large companies like those pour in the additives, because, why not? They’re cheaper, and no one is really paying THAT much attention, right? No thanks!
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Femme & fierce, effortless & chic
Zoe and Daria do it right
Practice what you preach
My beauty philosophy summarized in one word Simplicity.
The best beauty advice I ever received was eat well, cut out sugar.
My biggest beauty mistake was not reading ingredients on product labels!
I would feel naked if I wasn’t wearing argan oil.
I wouldn’t be caught dead using CETAPHIL.
The Vintner’s Daughter Botanical Serum is currently on the top of my shopping wish list.
I would recommend buying a daily, organic facial serum to anyone.
If I could only shop for/use 3 beauty brands for the rest of my life I would pick Odacite, The Ordinary, and Vintner’s Daughter.
My favorite thing to shop for is new facial serums, but I’d rather be doing anything else than shop for drug store cosmetics.
We are so blessed to have so many beauty brands on the market. Even more diverse brands are popping up, giving us more shade choices for makeup and more texture choices for hair. I have my favs/old faithfuls and new superstars, like NARS, BECCA, Fenty Beauty, MAC, Glossier and Supergoop.
Glossier is a brand I particularly connect with. It celebrates individuality and the everyday girl, inclusivity, skin first, makeup after, and confidence. It’s as if they read my beauty diary and said yes, let’s appease Sally.
LipBar is a black owned, vegan and cruelty free beauty brand that strives to serve the underserved beauty community. Seeing their promotional content and items adorned with women who look like me is what initially intrigued me. I love that they are environmentally conscious, and consumers don’t have to worry about chemicals. I just had to try a product and support one of my black sisters trying to create a more inclusive beauty community.
These brands have values, not just products. As consumers, we have a duty to support brands that reflect our personal values, because we are essentially unpaid ambassadors for these brands.
Brands with values, not just products
To find beauty inspiration, I go to the wonderful world of YouTube. What a love–hate relationship. The amazing content at my fingertips and the countless hours spent and lost in a black hole of YT vids. I go to Pinterest and follow a bunch of makeup boards. I also keep my eyes on Instagram. Social media is my source of choice because there’s so much content and accessibility to the people I’m inspired by the most. I actually learn by watching, then attempting. Key word: attempt.
I have certain inspirations I always look directly to. Jackie Aina is one. It’s rare you find someone to learn from who can relate to all your beauty attributes. Kim Kardashian is another one. Meagan Good is my favorite skin inspiration. Queen Rih is beauty goals all around.
Watching, then attempting
Beauty products help us embrace our natural beauty. What I’ve learned over the years is that flawless makeup starts with beautiful skin. It has taken time to learn what works for me, what doesn’t and how to apply certain products even before touching a makeup brush.
My skincare routine makes me feel the best out of my whole process. I just feel like, wow you did yourself a favor. I love feeling my hydrated, well taken care of skin. I still want to enhance my regimen and really target my dark spots. I want to explore AHAs and BHAs a bit more, so I can incorporate them.
My approach to makeup is simply embrace and enhance. I never want makeup to be a cover-up or a crutch. I learned to embrace my natural beauty, flaws and all.
You will never, ever ever, catch me without lashes. After that, eyeliner. Lastly, concealer. It’s a subtle way to hide how sleepy I am or those dark circles but not be all the way made up. Those products are the bare minimum for me and I always feel fantastic when I’m in just those.
Embrace & enhance your natural beauty
My beauty philosophy summarized in one word Embrace.
The best beauty advice I ever received was Beauty begins with being yourself.
My biggest beauty mistake was wearing foundation without primer.
I would feel naked if I wasn’t wearing lashes.
I wouldn’t be caught dead using glitter lipstick.
Tatcha Silk Canvas Primer is currently on the top of my shopping wish list.
I would recommend buying Laura Mercier Translucent Setting Powder to anyone.
If I could only shop for/use 3 beauty brands for the rest of my life I would pick Fenty, NARS, and Becca.
My favorite thing to shop for is eye shadow/highlighters, but I’d rather be doing anything else than shop for foundation.
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I learned to embrace my natural beauty, flaws and all.
Like many of my fellow millennials, Glossier is my favorite beauty brand. They integrate both skincare AND makeup, which is rare for a “non-designer” brand, and they do it a fair price point with a sublime aesthetic. I completely share their philosophy of “skin first, makeup second.” I love that they are all about enhancement rather than covering up - letting your true features shine.
On the other hand, I was so taken aback by the Sunday Riley fake reviews controversy. this bothered me so much, because I really value transparency and honesty. Especially as a brand that had such a loyal following, why do something like that?
Some brands I’ve been hearing a lot about lately are Supergoop!, Milk Makeup, AmorePacific, and Glow Recipe. Supergoop! especially caught my eye because I really think they’re redefining the sunscreen game. They have so many innovative sun protection products out there, like a dry oil stick, powder, mist, and the first ever eyeshadow with SPF. This is the year I’ve set out to wear sunscreen every day and Supergoop! made it easy, enjoyable, and fun.
Let your true features shine
I find a lot of my inspiration from Instagram. Seeing posts of beautiful places and people and watching tutorial videos inspire me. I find it so easily accessible and attainable on Instagram’s platform: videos are short and informative, amateurs, professionals, and brands have equal opportunity to share their ideas and gain a following.
My beauty icons are makeup artists like Katie Jane Hughes, Nikki Wolff, and Nam Vo, old film stars like Lauren Bacall and Grace Kelly, and influencers like Rohini Elyse and Tylynn Nguyen. All these women have a beauty that transcends time period - glowing skin, gorgeous hair, and a good attitude.
In the last five years, my beauty routine has grown up. It was just washing and attacking pimples. Now, I focus on exfoliating, treating, and sunscreening (every day, even winter, even cloudy days). I’ve arrived at a routine that really keeps my acne at bay, and when they do come, I’m better prepared and less aggressive.
Those who know me would agree that beauty plays a big part in my life.
I couldn’t live without my serums, acne products, and sunscreens. When I use my products, I feel a sense of zen wash over me. I love having a routine and a way to wind down and start my days. Sometimes, I feel like my goals with my routine are unattainable – flawless, even, glowing skin can’t happen every day, so I aim for two out of three!
I like my look to be about dewy skin, so I don’t want my makeup to hide that. Usually, I just wear concealer under my eyes, blush on my cheeks, a tinted lip, and mascara. I couldn’t live without blush - I use it on my cheeks and my lips (and sometimes my eyes), and I think it just makes me look alive and fresh.
I feel put together when I do my little routine, like I’ve made an effort (even if it looks like I’m not wearing any makeup to the outside world). With my makeup, I’m hoping to enhance the work I’ve put into my skincare, and make my features stand out.
My beauty philosophy summarized in one word Extra.
The best beauty advice I ever received was wear sunscreen.
My biggest beauty mistake was (is) popping pimples.
I would feel naked if I wasn’t wearing a serum.
I wouldn’t be caught dead using heavy foundation.
Caudalie Vinoperfect Radiance Serum is currently on the top of my shopping wish list.
I would recommend buying sheet masks to anyone.
If I could only shop for/use 3 beauty brands for the rest of my life I would pick Glossier, La Roche Posay, and Innisfree.
My favorite thing to shop for is pharmacy products, but I’d rather be doing anything else than shop for bell peppers.
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All these women have a beauty that transcends time period - glowing skin, gorgeous hair, and a good attitude.
Lyd, Laugh, Love
Few things make me feel more femme and fierce than a burly brow.
These brands have values, not just products.
I think this bothered me so much, because I really value transparency and honesty.