Category Archives: Makeup

5 Lippies to Love this Fall

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Whether you’re into vampy lips, classic hues, or looking to try something completely new, fall is the perfect inspiration for adding to your lipstick collection or reaching for some forgotten favorites.   Now, women of color often hesitate to try different shades because we’re not sure how it will wear against our various skin tones.  But truthfully, we can pull off an array of colors…and beautifully might I add.  It’s all about tailoring the shades to you, being confident, and owning it!

So, here are 5 fall lipsticks for you to slay this season…

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Nothing says fall like a vampy, purple lip!  This shade is a bold statement lippie that is perfect for a night out on the town. Pictured: MAC ‘Nightmoth’ Lip Pencil and Anastasia Beverly Hills Liquid Lipstick in ‘Potion’.  

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The weather is getting chilly, bring out the hot cocoa! Try reddish brown or chocolate brown lips to give your look a vintage feel. Pictured: MAC ‘Bittersweet’ Pro Longwear Lip Pencil and MAC Retro Matte Lipstick in ‘Antique Velvet’.

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A girl can never go wrong with a good nude lip! This season rock a rosy nude on the days you opt for a subtle slay. Pictured: MAC ‘Plum’ Lip Pencil and NYX Soft Matte Lip Cream in ‘Rome’.

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If you’re ready to step completely outside the box this season, rock a gorgeous grey! Pictured: MAC ‘Chestnut’ Lip Liner and MAC ‘Hasley’ Lipstick.

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Red lips are classic and timeless in every shade. However, a dark, oxblood red will be perfect for when you’re feeling regal this fall. Pictured: NYX Currant Lip Pencil and MAC Retro Matte Lipstick in Studded Kisses.

What are a few of your favorite fall lippies? And what new colors are you looking to try this season? Leave a comment below or hit us up on social media! 

#BeautyBeyondtheBeat

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Earlier this year, R&B songstress Alicia Keys initiated a #NoMakeup movement but the backlash flew once onlookers realized she wasn’t just applying this to her private day-to-day life at home. Live TV shows, the year’s biggest awards shows, you name it…Alicia Keys was baring it all and beautifully might we add.

However, the fact that she received backlash for such a personal decision was shocking. She’s decided she no longer wants to cover up any aspect of herself, whether mentally or physically…and that is just as beautiful as her outer appearance..makeup or not.  So, we were inspired to explore the beauty beyond being beat for the gods. Like A. Keys expressed, her flaunting a bare face doesn’t mean she’s anti-makeup or anti anyone who will continue to wear it.  But beyond that, what makes you beautiful most of all can’t be seen on the exterior and can’t be masked by makeup. Now granted, we had to learn this lesson along our journey and now we want to share with you how we found our #BeautyBeyondtheBeat.

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I learned the true meaning of beauty in middle school and it was a rocky road to get to that understanding. At the time I was so insecure about my appearance – being overweight with round glasses and slightly crooked teeth was a recipe for disaster. And to top that, my hair broke off really bad so I wore wigs and weaves to cover up the truth.

I didn’t think I was beautiful so I used to imagine what I would look like if I had other people’s features…

My smile + Ashley’s long hair + Mia’s tiny waist + Tiffany’s hazel eyes = Perfection

I wanted so badly to be someone else. I sought validation from boys who didn’t even know what beauty was. We both thought that beauty was the size of a woman’s jeans but in retrospect, my size 12 was miniature compared to the proportion of my heart.

While middle school was a rough period for me, that pain helped me find my light. Around this time I fell in love with writing. Poetry got me through the darkness and helped me see that beauty was more than my appearance.

I realized that the way I expressed myself through writing was beautiful… the desire that I had to make a difference in my community was beautiful… the way I smiled so hard that my eyes looked closed was beautiful.

I began to see that I was beautiful for so many reasons aside from what I looked like. And as that inner beauty began to glow, it spread to my outer appearance. Gradually my self-esteem found it’s way off of the floor and I saw that I was beautiful just the way I was even if my thighs rubbed together or my glasses were a little thick. All of those characteristics were apart of who I was, and I couldn’t expect to be happy or fall in love if I couldn’t love the woman in the mirror first.

The most beautiful women are those who love themselves — their whole selves. Not in a narcissistic way, but in a way that they learn to play the cards that they were dealt without asking for a better hand. A beautiful woman is authentic and shines her light to encourage other people to do the same. Whether she’s going for natural look or her face is beat for the gods, she knows that her outer appearance is only one facet of her beauty and she’s much more than what meets the eye.

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Melissa 

Throughout all four years of high school, I vividly remember begging my mom to puhhhhleasssseeee let me wear makeup. I was always a girly girl so it was natural that I wanted to get dolled up on the daily and even now as a 24-year old woman, the love I have for all things beauty is borderline obsessive. However, back in my high school days there was an underlying reason I was so adamant about applying these products, in hopes of achieving what I then considered perfection.

Cue my adolescent enemy: ACNE. It became a struggle to embrace my natural beauty when I couldn’t get pass the constant breakouts and hyperpigmentation they left behind. The pure yearning I once had to learn and experiment with different beauty products and techniques just out of teenage curiosity, became more of a personal necessity in an effort to be seen as “beautiful” again. But I’m thankful that my mom didn’t allow me to wear makeup for as long as she did. I wasn’t able to hide but instead identify the beauty within me, beyond what was skin-deep.

And that’s when I learned… the real definition of beauty, which included more than having clear skin or being a pretty face. It’s the intelligence and maturity that I pride myself on. The compassion I have for friends and strangers alike. It’s my desire to never stop learning, growing, and becoming the best version of myself daily. And my favorite…it’s the smile that lights up a room, buckteeth n’ all with the sense of humor to match.

In my early adulthood, I’ve found the most beauty in situations that display growth. Like how I still love doing makeup and buying cosmetics but I only beat face on a good week, two days out of the week. The rest of the time I’m bare face and free. And it’s not just because I’m way past adolescence now and my skin is pretty clear. It’s because I still have acne scarring but I love the girl in the mirror fiercely and know only a fraction of what makes me beautiful is shown on the surface.

Being brave is beautiful. Having the tenacity to go after your dreams is beautiful. I could literally go on about what makes you beautiful beyond being beat but in the words of one of our favorite rappers, your true beauty is…

…something that the eyes can’t see, that the hands can’t touch and that others girls can’t be…and that’s YOU.” –J. Cole

Join Becoming Brilliance’s #BeautyBeyondtheBeat movement!  Whether you’re a girl who loves to beat face daily or a bare face beauty, we want to hear your journey of identifying and embracing your inner beauty until it ultimately shined outward.

3 Essentials for a Brilliant Summer BEAT

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So, those who truly know me can tell you I’m obsessed with all things beauty…but more specifically, all things MAKEUP. Even if you’re not a makeup enthusiast like myself, most brilliant beauties such as yourself recognize a beat face when they see one. Now, although some may opt for a bare face more often than a beat face, most of us like to enhance our natural beauty every now and again with a snatched eyebrow, bold eye with lashes, or a statement lippie (or a sickening contour and highlight, I could seriously go on all day…lol). Summer is a great time to put your best, beat face forward whether you’re heading to a day party in the city or vacationing abroad.

Initially, as a beginning makeup enthusiast from about the ages of 17-20, I hated putting any makeup on my face during the summer (although, that didn’t stop me from buying it…lol). I become hot fairly easy and just the thought of sweat beads seeping out of my pores from the Georgia heat, ruining the flawless face that I took my precious time to apply was not an attractive idea to me. However, after several years of YouTube beauty school, I was introduced to more than just your basic eye shadow and lipstick products but products that are essential to the foundation of a successful beat face for any season! Now, some people may think these products are gimmicks and just the beauty industry’s way of persuading us to spend more money but once you see the difference they have on your makeup routine, you’ll never be the same. Here are my 3 Essentials to keep your Brilliant Summer Beat intact:

Essential #1: PRIMER

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Once your face has been cleansed and moisturized, a primer should be applied before any makeup touches your face. Priming acts as a barrier between your bare skin and the foundation, concealer, etc. you’ll be applying. Primers are great for individuals with oily skin as there are great ones on the market for mattifying the face and preventing shine from the skin’s natural oils, this is a necessity for hot weather and a personal favorite of mine is the BECCA Ever-Matte Poreless Priming Perfector (pictured above). The primers pictured are current favorites of mine. The two others are Marc Jacobs Under(cover) Perfecting Coconut Face Primer and MAC Prep + Prime Skin Base Visage . Both of these primers are great for providing a smooth base for your makeup to glide onto and adhere to. They also prevent creasing throughout the day. The primers I’ve included above could be considered pricey; however, there are so many primers available for every budget and if you want to try before you buy, Sephora will give you samples!

Essential #2: POWDER FOUNDATION

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 I am a lover of powder foundation. It’s convenient on days when you don’t have much time or don’t want to wear much makeup. But also, it’s the perfect product to seal the deal on a flawless full face of makeup that will withstand the heat! Powder foundation and/or translucent setting powder are essential to giving your face a matte finish to prevent looking like a grease ball. I’ve pictured quite a few above, the obsession is real…lol, but my favorite powders are MAC Mineralize Skinfinish Natural, MAKE UP FOR EVER Duo Mat Powder Foundation, and Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder. Powders are also great for touching up throughout the day if oil begins to shine through in areas such as your T-zone. They’re light on the skin which makes for perfection during the summer season.

Essential #3: SETTING SPRAY

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Last but certainly not least, everyone needs a setting spray. Like primers there are many different setting sprays on the market for different effects and every budget. They can be dewy, mattifying, and hydrating… depends on whatever look you’re into. I personally look for my setting spray to rehydrate my skin after applying powder so I don’t look cakey in the face and to ensure along with the primer underneath my makeup, that my beat face will stay intact well past completion. My absolute favorite setting spray currently is the MAKE UP FOR EVER Mist + Fix Setting Spray ! They also give a great refreshing and cooling feeling to the face after you’ve had your makeup on for a few hours while being out and about in the sun. Many come in travel sizes so throw one in your carry-on bag while traveling or your purse when you need a moment of rejuvenation from the summer heat!

What products do you use for a flawless summer face? Will you be trying any of the products above? Let me know how you like them, I want to hear from you all!

DIY Lip Scrubs Just in Time for Valentine’s Day (or whenever!)

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February is synonymous with Valentine’s Day (and Black History Month!).  With Valentine’s Day come hugs, kisses and my personal favorite…CANDY.   However, February is also synonymous with winter weather. Our lips are delicate and the cold weather is extremely harsh on them. Last week, I recommended that you should allot daily “me” time and a great, easy way to pamper yourself is indulging in a weekly, DIY lip scrub.

As a beauty enthusiast, I am an avid shopper of Sephora and Ulta where you can find brand name lip scrubs galore. However, you may have the ingredients right in your kitchen that will give you smooth lips worthy of Valentine’s Day kisses. And also as a lover of matte lipstick, exfoliating your lips prior to applying your lip color guarantees flawless wear. Below are my favorite combinations for Do-It-Yourself lip scrubs:

Honey + White Granulated Sugar + Fresh Lemon Juice = Lemon Honey Scrub

Olive Oil + Honey + Brown Sugar= Honey & Brown Sugar Scrub

Coconut Oil + White Granulated Sugar + Vanilla Extract= Vanilla Sugar Lip Scrub

After mixing the ingredients together in a small dish, spread the mixture onto the lips and let it sit for a one minute. Then, massage the mixture into your lips for a minute using a clean finger (or rub your lips together).   Wipe the scrub off your lips with a warm, damp washcloth and apply your favorite lip balm (coconut oil is amazing on the lips). And lastly, bask in the smoothness of your renewed and kissable lips! Happy Valentine’s Day! ¡Besos!

Give these scrubs a try! What are some of your favorite lip care essentials for the winter?