For your eyes only – Build your own mascara with Eyeko

I wrote about the Eyeko Bespoke Mascara two years ago when I visited their lash bar in Harvey Nichols. At the time, it was a total game changer for me because I didn’t realise what my natural eyelashes were like and what I needed to make them better as I was always clueless about mascara and felt it wasn’t as important as my eyeliner. 

A few weeks ago, I went back, but this time to their Selfridges concession and I can confirm that, again, Eyeko saved my eyelashes!

Just like my eyebrows, my eyelashes aren’t the best, they’re long but fine, just like my hair so they always need extra attention.  I don’t like fake lashes, but since discovering the Eyeko Magic Lash Boost two years ago, haven’t looked back.  The lash booster, isn’t for every day though, so it’s been difficult creating the full effect I wanted to achieve on a daily basis.  

When I got the the lash bar, I was asked what I wanted from my eyelashes, but the truth is, I didn’t know what I wanted to achieve, only for them to look better. That’s why the lash expert at the Eyeko Eyeliner and Lash bar are so useful, they’re like your eyelash doctors where you tell them what’s wrong, and they solve your problem.

They take a good look at your lashes and ask you how you would like them to look and then diagnose you with your bespoke brush and mascara formula. The day I went in, my lashes were having a good day and actually looking great, so I thought I would challenge them, but to my dismay, they told me that mine were super long, looked great but needed a boost to make them look fuller.  They also told me that when applying mascara, I miss my inner and outer lashes which aren’t as long so my new mascara will make them even better. I was therefore prescribed with a curved brush which is slim enough to reach those areas, and a formula to thicken.

There are 100’s of possibilities for these bespoke mascara’s so they don’t have names, only numbers so each one really is tailor-made for you. They have so many brushes and formulas its incredible that each one is different and tailor made for you.

They also come in a super cool box which has your initials, and inside, contain a guitar pick which is also an eyelash comb.

And the box has a mirror! 

My mascara

Okay, so the box looks cool, but does the mascara deliver? Well, yes, the mascara itself doesn’t disappoint so don’t worry about it being all style without substance. Eyeko only make products for eyes so they’re real experts and the staff at their counters are really helpful and passionate. My mascara is really black which is great and it makes my eyelashes look really thick, volumous and eye opening. It’s lightweight, doesn’t clump and dries quickly, but not too quickly so you can add layers. The brush is fantastic, the middle of course boosts my centre super long lashes and the tip gets into those inner corners. I love this mascara, its perfect. My only negative feedback is that it’s difficult to remove every trace and I only realised weeks later that the bits I couldn’t remove were fibres in the magic lash boost. In fact, they go all over your sink, but they don’t stain as it’s just fibre and the trick get them off your lashes, is to gently pull them with your fingers and run it under a tap. 


If you fancy being diagnosed with a mascara to boost your eyelash game, head to Selfridges for your diagnosis, you wont regret it. 

£30

 

Raise your Brow Game with Eylure 

Brows are Big. As in they’re still relevant and physically big too… the Insta Brow, Feather Brow, Brow Lace Wig, Glitter Brow and the microblading trend means we’re still Fleaking Out about Brows!

Dua Lipa, Solange,Gillter Brows, Feather Brow

That’s cool, because when it comes to my eyebrows, there’s always room for improvement as mine are always changing shape and never look like they’re expected on Instagram. 

After a few years of experimenting with gel and powder, I thought I had my brow game on point until I went to a brow workshop with Eylure and their brow expert Sal, Eyebrow King which completely changed everything. We all know your Brow shape is a game changer. It can make or break your face. The perfect arch can make you look younger, cooler, your face more structured, yet a bad Brow can make you look old, stunned, tired. Sal explained the structure of the brow and its proportions according to the shape of your face and finally, which products you should be using – it basically changed my brow life. 

Below is an image of my face which shows the measurements of my eyebrow according to my face. You can use a pencil to define it yourself which should be a line from your inner eye (or outer lip) to the inner eyebrow and no further, the outer edge of eye to end (length) of brow. Your arch should measure up with the centre of your eye. Below is my eyebrow and face which gives a clearer picture.

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I have been experimenting with Eylure products now for a while as they also have so many products such as Brow Stencils, Semi Permanent tints,  Brow Tamer, Contour Sticks and more. Below are my favs –

Brow Pencil

£5.45

Pop this baby in your bag for emergencies. Need a little brow touch up during the day, after work, or after the gym? Then this is the product for you. This Brow pencil is ideal for a firm textured look that will build up colour nicely and naturally.  I use mine in the middle of my brow after brushing out the brow to add more definition. The sharpness of the pencil can create hair like lines which mimic strands. It lasts all day and is so soft and easy to use. It comes 4 different shades – Black, Dark Brown, Mid Brown and Blonde. This pencil will not only condition and nourish but will leave you with amazing looking brows.

Brow Pomade

£8.95

I love this Brow Pomade in Medium Brown.  It’s a creamy, long-lasting brow colour that provides colour, sculpting and shading for the brows. I apply it using the Brush & Wand Duo following the shape of the brows and use the flat end of the brush to fill my eyebrows in. The pomade is very pigmented so go easy on the cream and build your brow up slowly for a natural look. Once its applied, brush the pomade out with the wand which makes the colour less intense and dense. Once the pomade is on and brushed out I add the liner above. The great thing about this pomade is that if you make mistakes it rubs out easily with a sponge or pads without smudging. I actually do that on most days and it has never stained. The colour stays put all day, even on super hot summer days due to it being humidity and waterproof. Available in Dark Brown, Mid Brown and Blonde this is a one-stop product for beautifully full brows

Brow Palette

£9.95

For those of you gifted with thick brows, this is the product for you. It’s less precise than the other products above and the finish is softer and more natural as the brush is thicker and you will be using powder. The palette consists of a wax, dark powder and light powder to highlight. At first I found this difficult to use as I do need to fill my eyebrows in and so used to using the pomade however with practice I have gotten used to it. The wax comes on easily, it doesn’t move or feel greasy and wet allowing the powder to stick and leave a soft and highly pigmented finish. It’s less pointy than the other two so great for defining already thick eyebrows. 

Available from Eylure, Boots and Superdrug

 

Is the beauty industry becoming Woke? Lancôme launch Teint Idole Ultra Wear Foundation in 40 Colours & #myshademypower Campaign

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Is the beauty industry becoming Woke?

As a woman of colour, beauty has always been extremely important in my life and I know that so many other people share my experiences. There are so many layers to this relationship which I will not go into in this post, however, I will talk about the current movement we are seeing in the beauty world towards diversity.

When it comes to beauty, it’s tough being a woman, but believe me, being a WOC is next level! Because our hair and skin are different to the ‘norm’, it has always been difficult for us to buy certain products such as darker shades of foundation, so we feel that we are not represented. Apart from known brands like MAC, Bobbi Brown and NARS no one else, until recently, has really catererd for the needs of women with darker skin.

Inclusivity 

However, thanks to social media, we are starting to see a shift from the traditional ‘western’ beauty standards which has always been the norm, towards inclusivity.  I’m talking about diversity on all levels from skin colour, hair, body positivity and gender. Brands and celebrities are being called out on cultural appropriation and inapropriate labelling. Last week a beauty brand called one of its products spastic and this week a high street retailer labelled white skin as normal and the internet was not happy. It is therefore very clear there is a movemnt taking place.

Beauty trends like big brows, full lips, contouring and highlighting is seen on women of all colours and even on men. Unlike fashion, it seems that the beauty world has accepted diversity so much faster and we now have darker foundations available and also see women of colour in ad campaigns such as Charlotte Tilbury and Lancôme.

Lancôme’s vision of beauty is that ‘beauty is not dictated’ and celebrate diversity, freedom and expression for all women. Their latest campaign My Shade My Power features 40 incredible women from the UK and Ireland who are fantastic role models. The women are from all ages and backgrounds ranging from scientists, businesswomen, dancers, and sportswomen – everyone from Gurinda Chadha to Julie Adenuga. The Campaign (top) is to launch the Lancome Teinte Idole Ultra Wear which comprises of 40 shades. All 40 women are wearing a different colour making up the 40 shades and on the website you hear their story.  It’s very powerful and such a fantastic idea to help represent those who wouldn’t normally feel like they are being included.

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The foundation colours suit all skin tones from the lightest to the darkest shades including yellow, warm and cool undertones..  L’Oreal’s chemist Balanda Atis created the broad palette by discovering of an ultramarine blue pigment which offers deep pure colour in darker foundations. They decided to create such a large range as they found that 45% of women couldn’t find a shade that suits them.

So, does the foundation deliver?

If you are thinking of buying this foundation I would first of all recommend going to your local Lancôme counter for a consultation. There are so many colours and it can become confusing. The foundation is darker than it looks on the bottle so test it on your skin first. I was convinced I was 6 as that was the sort of colour I normally buy, but when I tried it on my skin it was too dark. Then, I tried 7 which is more yellow but too dark.  I finally did my research by going on the website and went back to the counter to try a new colour out. I argued slightly with the consultant as I couldn’t belive I would be shade 501 but it is a perfect match.

The foundation itself is super nice and easy to use. I applied it with the All Foundation Brush (£29) which is a synthetic bristled brush to provide seamless blending across the skin curves, for an instantly flawless finish. I normally use a sponge but I really enjoyed using this brush, it’s really firm yet soft and it buffs the foundation onto the face really quickly.  I think I will use this forever now as I love the finish.

I only needed a tiny amount of foundation for this full coverage look. It glides onto skin and is completely weightless and comforting. It makes my skin look perfect and radiant. The coverage is heavier than my current foundation, yet I used less of this for the same effect. If you like a heavy coverage you can build it up but I promise you, I doubt you will need it. The foundation doesn’t move or cake at all throughout the day. It even looked good after a days work and after a workout.

The foundation contains an Eternal Soft Polymer which allows an increased comfort level with ultra‑long wear. The NAI pigments are specially coated pigments to maintain consistent pH levels with the skin so makeup stays in place all day and doesn’t transfer onto your hands or clothes. The Perlite and Silica in the foundation are used to effectively absorb oils without drying the skin out. I would however, finish with Powder to set the foundation.

Before applying the foundation, I used the La Base Pro Hydra Glow Primer (£28.50) is my favourite kind of primer because it gives you a gorgeous dewy look as opposed to a matt finish primers are normally associated with. This primer is infused with 14 intensive skin caring actives including my favourite, Rose essence and two types of pearls which instantly refreshes the skin and revives the complexion with an awakened morning glow. I love it and it smells amazing!

Me this morning with my 501 foundation


I highly recommend this foundation. I am so pleased that Lancôme have been so great in promoting inclusively and celebrating diversity and the actual product is excellent too. Lets hope all of the other brands follow suit because let’s face it, excluding such a large population of people who spend so much more on beauty products means companies are massively missing out and in my opinion less progressive.   

Available in 40 Shade from Lancome and Department Stores such as Selfridges, House of Fraser and Debenhams.

£31.50

Beyonce’s Hair Colourist Rita Hazan launches hair care collection!

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I am crazy in love with Rita Hazan, hair colourist to Beyonce, the Kardashians, Katy Perry, JLo and so many more amazing women. Famous for her risk taking and the iconic looks she has created from Katy Perry’s pastels to Beyonce’s colour, it is clear, Rita is a genius.

I had the chance to meet Rita earlier this year at the launch of her new products and had a really long chat about my colour damaged hair and of course makeup. She’s a very cool New Yorker with great hair – a total boss and so inspiring. Her products definitely reflect her whole aesthetic as her own hair is coloured and she has a really deep understanding of what women need. 

Here’s us twinning:

I know what you’re thinking, another celeb artists launching a brand, but seriosuly this one totally lives up to expectation.

My hair is bleached AF! Recently I had it cut and coloured and thought it was looking and feeling great, until I used the True Colour Revolution Shampoo and Conditioner. After using these products, my hair felt like real hair again. I couldn’t believe it. It felt heavy, thick, shiny, soft, smooth and alive! Anyone with bleached hair will know what I mean. Coloured hair feels like hollow straw. After using these products it felt incredible. I actually noticed immediately after shampooing because even my wet hair felt saturated and smooth.

The True Color Revolution Shampoo (£21) is specially designed for color treated hair as the rich-lathering shampoo gently yet effectively protects hues. Infused with botanical surfactants, it cleans and removes build up without stripping color. The Rice proteins and Moringa Seed Extract leave hair squeaky clean and nourished. There is no build-up, so hair feels weightless and silky. 

The True Color Revolution conditioner (£21) is Infused with Japanese Camelia Oil to leave strands feeling silky and manageable. Rita’s fade-­defying complex protects color from UV, environment and heat tools, preventing breakage while providing lustrous sheen.

Also what’s amazing is that these products are Sulphate, Sodium Chloride & Paraben Free. The packaging on these products is amazing and it smells expensive. You only need a tiny amount so a little goes a long way. 

The other products are from the collection are, root concealer touch up stick and spray, a Triple Treat Split End Therapy. Check them out…. and let’s face it, it’s the closest we’re ever going to get to Queen Bey’s glam team. Enjoy x 

 Available from Selfridges 

Pollution-Proof your skin with REN Flash Defence Anti-Pollution Mist

Air Pollution levels, especially in London, larger cities and urban areas are at a record high. As well as being harmful to the environment and your health, pollution also damages your skin. 

Pigmentation, dullness known as ‘urban grey’ and premature ageing to the skin is caused by toxic air and free radicals such as UV light, cigarette smoke, exhaust fumes and heavy metals. These generate free radicals on the surface of the skin which cause “oxidative stress” which damages the cells, making in intoxicated.  

So how do we pollution proof our skin?  

Just like UV protection, the beauty industry has quickly caught onto this problem, providing solutions for your skin and now even hair. Anti-pollution products are everywhere and I am sure they will continue to rise of the years. For those of you who are a little sceptical about the risk of pollution on skin as a marketing buzzword, yes, you are right, but if you read about anti-ageing products from the beginning of your beauty and skincare life, you will notice that a lot of products help protect your skin from free radicals which is pollution so it’s nothing new, the problem is the increasing levels. 

An easy way to protect your skin from pollution is the REN Flash Defense Anti-Pollution Spray which instantly shields and protects the skin from the ageing effects of harmful free radicals and environmental pollution. The fine and lightweight mist can be sprayed under or over makeup and throughout the day.  Its super lightweight, absorbs straight into the skin and feels so great in the summer.  It smells really nice, like essential oils when you first apply but the scent quickly evaporates and feels more like unscented water so feels refreshing on the skin. I use mine before I apply my foundation and it doesn’t affect it at all.

How does it work?

The mist forms an invisible barrier which acts like a second skin to shield any pollutants. The natural ingredients such as Zinc, Amino Acids, Quercetin (Sophora Japonica Flowers) and Alfa-glucan (extract from yeast) boost the skin’s antioxidant capacity which helps to strengthen the skin’s natural defences, promotes cell longevity, and stimulates skin repair which neutralizes urban grey and combats signs of fatigue on the skin. 

If you’re looking for a summer face mist, I would definitely invest in this anti-pollution one as it’s a great natural alternative to what is already on the market. It reduces your carbon footprint too, so you can practice what you preach.

Available from Space NKSpace NK

£24

Shades of Blonde – Here’s how you get rid of brassy and dull blonde hair

Getting the right shade of blonde for someone with dark brown hair is difficult. I colour my hair every 4 months and my recent trip to the hairdresser left my hair looking a warmer shade of gold which some might call ginger!  A few days later my niece told me that when she grows up she wants ‘orange’ hair like Aunty Jaz! I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry.

My hairdresser is amazing, and sometimes these things happen, so until she has time to fix the ginge, I have been washing my hair every day with the new Charles Worthington Colour Enhancer Ultra Violet Shampoo.  This shampoo is incredible! It has completely toned down the orange leaving my balayage a warm and super cute rose gold on top blending into super blonde (almost white blonde) towards the ends.  Also, every time I use it in addition to my regular shampoo, it always makes my hair look softer and shinier than normal.  Its amazing!

Brassed Off! 

I have written about Silver shampoo before. Its amazing for bleached hair, balayage, highlights and even for natural blondes as it removes brassy yellow tones out of blonde hair which is a build up of product and environmental damage, leaving it looking bright and new.

This new Charles Worthington Colour Enhancer Ultra Violet Shampoo is one of the best ones I have used. Its only £7.99 from boots but do not let this fool you, it has salon-strength with an intense violet toning formula to banish stubborn brassiness. All you do is wash into hair like a normal shampoo and leave in for 5 minutes before rinsing. As I was trying to cool down my roots, I only applied it to my roots so just add it to the area you wish to focus on and if its your whole head of hair thats great, my bottle is still full and I have used it every day for 3 weeks. Also, what makes this different from other silver shampoos is the hydrating Guarana which makes hair super soft making it so much more tempting to use every day

Available from Boots £7.99

 

Eco Tools – Vegan & Cruelty Free Makeup Brushes and Sponges

They key to good makeup is your tools.  I used to be a simple hands and fingers girl but until I started using foundation brushes and sponges to apply my base and realised how game changing these simple tools are.  I have been using sponges to apply my makeup for a year now… yes totally late to the party, but it’s changed everything for me.  My foundation finish is sheer and looks so much more natural, even and perfect.  Finally, when it comes to applying your eyeshadow, contour and highlighter, the magic is all in the brushes. 

As brushes are big business in the beauty industry and come in range of styles and prices, I wanted to let you know about Eco Tools which are 100% cruelty free, vegan (certified by Peta), environmentally friendly as they are made with renewable bamboo and packaged in recyclable material that is made of 100% Tree-Free paper.  

What’s more, they have collaborated with The Girl Project, a national non-profit initiative created by Glamour magazine to support global efforts to send girls everywhere to school. All the above is a no brainer for me. I’m a vegetarian and even though I’m not super precious, I don’t really fancy animal fur all over my face and sacrificing animals for the sake of a perfect contour.  For those of you who aren’t too concerned, they’re pretty good brushes too! I know so many great makeup artists who use them in their kit.

Eco Tools have a huge range of brushes, so here’s n of my favourites – 

What’s great about these brushes is, that they are labelled so you know what which one does. I have actually realised I have been using my Micro Blending brush for my eyeshadow! Oops! Its actually a fantastic brush for me eyeshadows and prefer to use the mini sponges (below) to smoke the eyeshadow out and a different mini sponge for any highlighting or concealer blending. 

Brow Shaping Duo – £4.25

Anything that helps me with my eyebrows is a winner. This brow shaping duo is under £5 which is crazy cheap compared to other brushes on the market. I use the angled liner brush to paint on my brow ink and shape my brows. I then use the spool to comb the product out making it look more natural and less intense. I then perfect my brows after a few minutes and define them further using the mini sponge below. 

Define And Highlight Duo – £10.25

This Define & Highlight Duo is designed with 2 brushes to naturally sculpt and illuminate your favorite facial features. After applying my contour with my sponge below, I use this super soft blusher brush to apply my bronzer. It feels soft, as if it was made from real fur…. and holds the powder while I sweep across my cheeks. I know that sounds totally wrong, but it is so soft it really does feel like animal fur, its amazing!

The fan brush is my absolute favourite! I use to apply my illuminator. I have never used a fan brush before and though it was a gimmick but the finish this brush leaves on the bridge or by nose and cheekbones is incredible, like no other.

SPONGES


Perfecting Blender Duo – £8.54 (top)

Who knew that makeup sponges and blenders could be ethical. These Perfecting Blender Duo are designed with EcoFoam® Technology made of 70% plant-based materials. They come in two sizes and densities to create a camera ready look. The Large Base Blender is soft and flexible to create light, buildable makeup application and the Mini Detail Blender is firmer for more precise and detailed coverage.  I use these wet by running under a tap, squeezing the excess and then using a towel for one last squeeze. I then dot my foundation on and then blend over my skin without pressing too hard. The round base blends and the flat surface evens out the product. The wedge gets into your creases like the nose and where you need precision. I wash mine daily, but you can do it weekly if you wish. 

Color Perfecting Minis – £6.83 (bottom right)

I absolutely love these Colour Correcting Mini sponges. They are designed with EcoFoam® Technology to flawlessly correct your complexion.  I use them to apply my eyeshadow, blend out my smokey eye, make corrections especially to my eyebrows after applying gel and pencil. They come as a pack of four and each sponge is color coded to use with formulas that counteract redness (mint), dark circles (pink), dullness (lilac) and dark spots (peach). Use them for applying concealer too and they can be used wet and dry as above.

 

This Contour Perfecting Applicator is designed to sculpt cheekbones, highlight and perfect with a simple sweep. What’s great about this is the fact that its a hand held want with a curve and point, creating the contour line and then blend. Create a dark line under the cheekbones by dabbing the sponge straight onto your contour cream or powder and blend the colour out. When cleaning, submerge the sponge into water only.

Modern Romance Collection – £12.77

This Modern Romance Collection looks amazing in your makeup kit and also makes an amazing gift. It contains a foundation brush, angled blush brush, eye full eye shadow shading and defining brushes, and a soft lid brush.

Limited Edition Anniversary Collection – £17.03

How gorgeous is this limited-edition brush collection features six face and eye brushes to create a fresh, healthy-looking glow with the brush holder? It contains the amazing Airbrushed Finishing brush, Setting brush, Spoolie brush for eyebrows, Angles Crease Brush for eyes, flat eyeliner brush and the eye and lip brush.

If you’re trying to be more ethical in your beauty choices, and be more clean, then this is the brand for you. I know its difficult, but small and unnoticeable changes make a huge difference and such a great impact.  They’re cheap too, so what’s stopping you?

Available from Boots