Back to Basics

I was recently contacted by the fabulous  Kay Montano (Creative Director of MyFace cosmetics and Chanel Make Up ambassador) via Twitter…yes little old me!

Kay wanted to know about the choice of foundations for darker skin tones here in the UK.  As I reflected upon her question I really was gladdened by the fact that the choice HAS got better over the years…

….I remember my first foray into the world of make up as a young and exuberant 14 year old – I bounded to the local chemist with my pocket money in hand to purchase a concealer.   Imagine my UTTER disappointment when I found  not a single brand suitable for my chocolate skin tone!

I soon realised I had to save a bit more pocket money to fulfill my desires.  I discovered  the department store brand Fashion Fair at my local Debenhams!  That marble pink compact (yes it was pink back in the day!) was my pride and joy…but the option to experience other brands were few and far between…times have REALLY changed.

Now there are a plethora of brands to chose from.  The beauty landscape has changed beyond recognition.  It may be still a challenge to get your hands on some of these brands ..especially if you live outside of London –  however most are only a click away.

The usual suspects – MAC and Bobbi Brown have a loyal – almost cult like following – but there are other brands that one can consider when choosing a foundation to suit your  beautiful black skin.

Illamasqua

Now I just had to commence my list with a British brand! Illamasqua is the brainchild of the founder of the ubiquitous GHDs and boasts an abundance of shades and textures of foundations.

Illamasqua Skin Base Foundation

The latest range to join the line up is the Skin Base foundation which is inspired by the cult Asian market Beauty Balm creams (also called BB creams for short!)

The BB phenomenon has traversed from the East and has exploded in the West! A number of  brands have recently launched BB creams – including  Garnier and Clinique – yet Illamasqua  is the only brand to have launched a ‘BB-esque’ product suitable for darker skins.  Skin Base comes in 18 skin loving shades – 6 of which are suitable for Black and Asian skin tones.

 Try before you buy at the flagship Illamasqua store, Beak Street, London, Selfridges Oxford Street, London,  The Manchester Trafford Centre, The Birmingham Bullring, Fenwick Newcastle, Debenhams Glasgow, Belfast and Cardiff or shop  online at www.illamasqua.com

BECCA

Australian brand BECCA is like a treasure waiting to be unearthed.    With 34 concealer colours and 34 (yes 34!) foundation shades there is sure to be a colour to match your skin tone perfectly.

The brande is loved by stars such as yummy mummy Beyoncè , supermodel Alex Wek and the ever so lovely Kelly Rowland (are you loving the X-Factor as much as I am??).

BECCA Stick foundation

I became acquainted with the brand when it was retailed in Space NK (alas, this is no longer the case.),  and I love the philosophy behind the brand – to enable ‘ ALL women, regardless of age or ethnicity, to achieve a natural looking, flawless complexion’.

Visit the sumptuous Becca Boudoir at 91A Pelham Road London  or shop online at www.beccacosmetics.com

black Up

I first came across this Parisian brand in 2006 but unfortunately I was put off by the name – it reminded too much of the infamous Minstrel shows of 19th century America!

However I have recently grown to love  the brand, mostly due to the exquisite, aspirational  imagery.

black UP SS11 campaign

black Up SS11 campaign

Available at Debenhams, the range consists of highly pigmented colour cosmetics, as well as a comprehensive foundation collection.

NARS

I am totally besotted with the brand! The sexy packaging, potent colours and evocative product names (the best selling item in the range is called..err…Orgasm!) make it a pleasure to use.  Created by make up maestro,  François Nars  in 1997, the line up included a shade of foundation called Jamaica.  The story goes that this product was conceived for the supermodel Naomi Campbell, who is a close friend and muse for the artisan.  The family of shades suitable for darker skin tones has grown to include globally inspired colours such as Benares, Khartoum and Trinidad, to name a few.

NARS concealer campaign AW11

Also, the NARS Concealer used to be available in only four shades but the line has recently been expanded to included 10 different shades to accommodate a variety of skin tones.

NARS is available at Space NK, leading department stores nationwide and at www.narscosmetics.co.uk

News Flash!! 

I have heard the  one of the chicest makeup brand of all  – Chanel –  will be launching Perfection Lumiere, its newest line of foundation, this September – and it’s something to talk about! The line, will offer the widest range of shades for Chanel yet – a whopping 23 shades to suit all ethnicities. Ooh la la!

image via WWD

Perfection Lumiere by Chanel

The face of the campaign is the beautiful Trinidadian born model Alyssah Ali, who is of Indian and Spanish origin

Christine Dagousset, executive vice president of fragrance and beauty for Chanel in the U.S. told Women’s Wear Daily, “This foundation was designed to be universal. Chanel’s creative director for makeup, Peter Philips, counts perfect skin among the most important features a woman can have and, since joining the brand in January 2008, had made it his goal to create a ‘perfect’ foundation: one that adjusts to the skin needs of every ethnicity and stays in place with a flawless finish.”  The company’s current leading foundation line Pro Lumiere offers only 6 shades.  The new launch will premier in the U.S …hopefully Chanel will bring the range to the UK and Europe too!!

image via WWD

Alyssah Ali for Chanel AW11

This is SO exciting, as for too long many of the leading designer makeup brands have been inaccessible to women of colour.  In my eyes this launch will mark a sea change in the beauty industry.   I will certainly do a review on this product!

Until then, a bientôt!

Advertisements

2 Comments on “Back to Basics”

  1. […] I had mentioned in a previous blog post, I had learned about the BECCA brand when it was sold in Space NK – but this was the first […]

  2. […] year I blogged about the latest addition to the Chanel foundation family – the Perfection Lumiere Fluide Foundation (£36), which was launched in the States last […]


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s