Post #6- I See Red!

Remember when red was the sinful colour and the only lipstick colour you could see everywhere at the same time?

One evening I was out for dinner with two of my girlfriends and red lipstick came up in conversation. One friend had just found out that she could wear a red lip any time of day with very little anywhere else on her face and was loving the revelation. My other friend, who is a little more reserved, thought that she didn’t need red and it was too bright. I found it my duty then as I do now to let her know that not all red is the same, nor is all lip wear created equal. Red can be transparent, glossy, bright, subtle, outrageous, fun, quirky, even downright naughty. But…

Red is more than just red and it took a while for me to adjust to the goodness of a confident red lip for any moment, not just for that night out in the little black dress! Red isn’t just that shade of danger or seduction, for me, it’s a celebration! The right red is important for the look you’re going for, your skin tone, and even your teeth colour. Undertones, baby! Orange, pink, and blue undertones will change the tone of your red! Which red are you wearing? 

Let’s take a look at the different kids of reds available in both drugstore and luxurious retail experiences found in my lipstick drawer.

My first real red was a NARS jumbo lip pencil called Cruella I bought a few years ago and still have. It was the first time I experienced matte lipstick gliding on like velvet! It had a blue undertone which made the red appear deeper and cooler in tone and helped my teeth look whiter. This lip was also great under a gloss or lip stain.

I received a sample size of a NARS lip stain that was a buildable red. This red was deceptive and I used it on top of my first Red mentioned here. It seemed to fill my lips with colour but as it dried it became darker giving the lips that blood colour as seen in the first picture on the left below. But in the rest of the pictures, it’s brighter as I only added a light amount to the Jumbo Lip Pencil. Either way, I’m game!

My third is one of my favourite reds ever and I’ll probably mention a 3B here since they are made by the same company. Pioneer and Dancer by Superstay Matte Ink are absolutely phenomenal colours. Pioneer has a blue undertone and Dancer has orange undertones and makes no joke about staying onto your lips all day and night if you let it.

Pioneer from SuperStay Matte Ink by Maybelline

A recent find of mine is this deep almost want to be burgundy Red by Milani’s Satin Matte liquid lipstick line called Elegant. It looks great while it’s wet but settles into your lips and dries without pulling all the while giving you lips you can still smack together knowing that the coverage of colour is still present, It’s a win for me. I found this one at the drugstore and I couldn’t be happier. This one also looks great on a Zoom call. (see it below wet and dry)

As you can probably tell, I love a solid matte lip, but I was recently blessed with a red by Bobbi Brown as a shiny lipgloss. Now, I have a confession to make. I was that girl in the 6th grade wearing that shiny oily roll-on lipgloss thing and if the teacher or the lesson were boring, I would sit there rolling it on over and over again. We had no devices or social media with which to fiddle in class, but by the end of the lesson I looked like I had kissed all of the fried chicken in the bucket and no one said a word, because it was what was popular in 6th grade. As I got older, I leaned into coloured glosses, also very oily in texture. Shine is not oil People! but let’s save that for another post. As I matured and came into knowledge about lipstick, I left the gloss behind because I was scarred by the pictures I had as proof of my oily lip failures and the stains left to my clothing and the memory of all of the sticky-ness. Then came this beautiful sample of “Red the News” in the Luxe Liquid Lip High Shine line by Bobbi Brown. It was absolutely fabulous and had me believing in shiny glosses again. It had full coverage and a yellow-blue undertone which I usually try to stay away from because of my own yellow undertones in my skin, but the colour was full and had really good staying power. I was impressed, to say the least. 

Some honourable mentions that I pull from the lipstick drawer every now and again are listed below. They are also fabulous but have not made it to pictures yet.

  1. Liquorice by Bite beauty if you want your red to be healthy and full of nutrients, this deep blood burgundy satin red is perfect for you.
  2. Guinevere by PatMcGrath in her MatteTrance lipstick line don’t play! This pout screams confidence and feels like decadence. Come on, Somebody!
  3. Elson also by Pat McGrath (see pictured at the top of the post)

Wherever you wear your red, wear it confidently. Wear it like you mean it. Red looks good on you boo, no matter your personal shade. 

💄P.s.

Feel free to tag me on IG @thelipstickblogger and let me know what your go-to reds are. Don’t forget to use the hashtag #wearitlikeyoumeanit. I’m so excited about adding to the Red part of my lipstick drawer. Are you? I also know there are some local and POC owned as well as Black Owned companies making some of the most gorgeous Reds out there. I can’t wait to try them all! 💋

Post #5 Colours that Scare My Mother!

My mother is a beautiful fiery Jamaican woman with a beautiful golden complexion and a ready witty mouth. This always makes for entertaining remarks and memorable moments. Therefore this post will definitely be the first in a series because Mama will have something to say and my love of colour isn’t going away any time soon. LOL!

1. I remember the first time I was wearing Visionary, a Superstay Matte ink by Maybelline and I tried to kiss my mother goodbye for the day. She ducked thinking something had gotten attached to my mouth and she thought it was still wet and would be left on her golden yellow perfect skin, LOL! I didn’t know she could move so fast. Once she saw it properly, she thought it looked alright. Visionary is a purple-grey matte colour that lasts and stays all day. I absolutely love this colour and usually pair it with some deep purple eye makeup as it adds a subtle weird nude for the look.

2. Dark purple! Royal Purple! Kind of sort of purple! I love, love, love purple anything on People of Colour. I have yet to see anyone wear it wrong. It’s so royal that it just looks great on all of us. I got Heroin by Mac and LM 04 from BlackUp and both are pigmented rich purples, not lilac or lavender, just straight purple. The one from MAC is a lipstick, while the one from BlackUp is a liquid lipgloss. Both have a blue undertone and last all day, giving me life! Mama wasn’t ready the first time, but I think she almost expects me to wear purple somewhere on my face now.

3. Lady Danger by MAC is Orange traffic cone Orange on my two tone lips. I remember trying this on in the store with my friend Justine. I thought I was going to tag along and get a nude, but when I saw that colour I had to try it on. The whole store stopped and the sales associates all seemed to quiet down at the same time as we all took notice of my huge orange lips. Pure joy! It was my favourite orange of all and it was on me. As soon as I got home and opened the door, my mother looked up and sad “wow what a lip” but in that shocked-you-walked-all-the-way-home-like-that kind of way. Hahahaha! I did not even consider her feelings. My lips and I were on cloud nine. I save this one for Summer days when my skin is glowing from extra sun kisses and the yellow undertone compliments the bronze glow of my skin. Whiten teeth before really wearing this one, because it’s pretty much a highlighter for all that is good lips!

4. Escapist Superstay Matte Ink by Maybelline wears as the deepest burgundy ever that it is easily mistaken for black! I wore it for a gig with two of my besties, ( Hey Nessa and Sulleyma) and had on this beautiful faux fur black vest and amazing black jeans. Simple black eyeliner and a great highlighted cheek with this colour had me feeling myself just a little. My brown skin was the perfect contrast to let this colour rock the night. I got home and my mother looked up and said, “your lip is black!” Like I didn’t know. HA! She shook her head and headed to her room. 

5. Explorer Superstay Matte Ink by Maybelline was a shocker for me too. A rich royal deep blue. Both of our eyes bulged a little. I was excited and she was afraid. “Where are you going in that?”  “I don’t know, but who cares! This is fabulous”, I replied…still her eyes were wide open in disbelief.

6. Finally Amazing Raine by ColouredRaine Cosmetics is the sweetest pastel pink, except it is the pinkest pink there ever was and because it is so pigmented and matte, it stays in the Bold category. It gained an “Oh dear, that’s loud!” from Mama. hahaha. This of course meant, it is perfect. 

7. I’m hoping to add a yellow to this mix and I can hardly wait to hear and see my mother’s reaction. LOL! I’ll keep you posted!

What is the greatest reaction that you’ve had to an unsuspecting lip colour choice? Share and comment here or on Instagram and don’t forget to tag @thelipstickblogger with your response. Whatever colour you choose, it’s the confidence it’s accessorizing, so #WearItLikeYouMeanIt 💋.

Post #4- Black Owned and Local (Part 2)

As mentioned in my previous post, my quest for Black Owned beauty brands has become a wonderful side project as I explore rich pigments and hues and textures and services from my people. People who understand the struggle of finding that perfect colour you’ve been looking for and what you want it to look like on your black skin, whatever shade of Black you are. I was even happier to find out that some of these brands were local to me. Hallelujah! Black-Owned Beauty Brands in my own backyard (by backyard, I mean all of Canada…that’s a big yard). After I posted a pic on the gram of myself smiling in a new colour from The LipBar, a friend of mine messaged me complimenting me and then suggested I look at local offerings. She suggested a brand and then I took it a step further to keep on looking. I’m still looking, but here is what I’ve found so far.

Crown Me by The LipBar
  1. PabaCosmetics are a brand I came across through searching on Instagram. They are a cruelty-free brand that creates makeup for women of diverse backgrounds. They are located in the Greater Toronto Area and are quite active online and in-store. They also have locations in Ottawa, Montreal and Ghana, Africa! They are so friendly and offer lipstick with SPF already in it. That’s right you can look fabulous and protect your melanin. Yes, Girl, lip-melanin needs protection too. I already feel like I know the women who run the GTA store since we’ve had wonderful interactions online and I have already been back to the store to acquire more lippies and become a PabaLady. I own Diva, a rich purple that has become one of my favourite on-the-go colours, Pout and Go Girl from the Liquid Lipstick collection. Check them out here https://pabacosmetics.com

2. MakeUpForMelaninGirls or MFMG is the brand that my friend suggested to me. They are located in Canada, so I’m thankful that I don’t have to think about the currency exchange.  They have strong affirmations on their site that encourage you before you even shop, I.e., You are Not an afterthought!…Come on Somebody! That there is good preaching! And for the girl with melanin anywhere in her skin, especially deep rich skin, this is the brand for you. They specialize in the perfect version of colours, not a whole lot of reds and pinks but rather the perfect red or pink or brown or orange for beautiful black skin. I love their Raw Liquid Lipstick as it dries to a soft velvet type feel on my lips. I own Rust and Naked, which is my perfect nude. Check them out here https://makeupformelaningirls.com/?currency=CAD

3. NagiCosmetics as mentioned before in Part 1 of this post. Still great, go get yours now! They also offer makeup courses for those who are interested. https://nagicosmetics.com/collections/all/face?sort_by=title-ascending

I have since found a few more very local brands that I will be trying out over the next few weeks. Some of them are Bourgie Cosmetics, Shades the Collection, Purim Cosmetics, and Secrets by Danika B., just to name a few. So stay tuned for the next Black-Owned Post as I discover the world of wonderful lip wear. Oh and I plan to #WearItLikeIMeanIt always!

💄 p.s.

If you have any names of Black Owned brands you’d love my opinion on, then please don’t hesitate to share. See you here or on the gram and tag @thelipstickblogger 💋

Post #3 Black Owned Cosmetics (Part 1)

#Black Lips Matter

Stay tuned, as this will be an on-going series of finds and comments that will take more than a couple of posts!

My first personal experience with a Black-owned cosmetic brand was about 6 years ago. I grew up noticing the Iman and Black Opal brands usually placed in Black Hair stores where there was no one to help you with makeup, but my first real experience with Black Owned make up for me was about 6 years ago.

I spent part of my summer as a camp counsellor in Ottawa and it was hot so naturally, my bronzy glow was in full reign, but my current foundation was all wrong. I went to work and on my lunch break walked into Sephora where I was met by a bunch of Esteé Lauder consultants there to promote the Double Wear Foundation. A man named Andrew(whom I’ve never forgotten and haven’t seen since…if you’re out there Andrew, I still need you to beat this face) walked up to me and helped me greatly. Then even though it wasn’t his job, he walked over to a counter that had products from a company named BlackUp. He said to me, “I just have to try these pigments on you. These colours are so rich and people like us need this”. “What’s it called?”, I replied, “It’s BlackUp from Paris”. He put their blush and a rich purple matte gloss on my very plump lips. I was sold!!!

I walked out of there in the right foundation and with confidence glowing out of all of my pores. Before my BlackUp discovery, I hadn’t really thought about the importance of Black-owned businesses in the make up industry. I’ve complained within myself or amongst friends that I had to think about certain colours because a certain colour would show up as a certain hue on me than it did on the girl they used to advertise the lip goodies. One of my coworkers shocked me shortly after my foundation-meet-Andrew-get-excited-about-BlackUp-lip-wear moment. She is a beautiful, feisty, white lady with short funky hair and always just a pop of amazing lip wear as her makeup. She asked about my colour and I told her about the brand and about going after rich pigments so they read like they do in the bottle and she completely agreed with me and then said she usually bought black-owned lipstick for that reason. Come on, Somebody! I was wonderfully encouraged. 

Temeka is wearing LM by BlackUp

Fast forward to 2020, the year of Didn’t See That Coming! And there is so much going on, pandemic, racial injustice, social unrest, national debt, local debt, personal debt, but there was also an opportunity to be educated about so much more than ever before. I chose to support and learn about Black-Owned Cosmetic Brands among other businesses and I was delightfully surprised. I am going to share some of my finds and their price points. Hopefully, you’ll find some of the same pigment-joy too. 

  1. The Lip Bar- I learned about this brand through my friend Jilly (she really keeps schooling me…Love you Jilly!) whose sister had ordered a bunch of lip goodies from their site and shipped them to her house. I got to look through them and was blown away by their colour selection. Jilly and I had a wedding to attend in masks and Jilly wore Crown Me, a rich deep purple, while I had something else on and after the wedding, her face still looked great meanwhile my mask was wearing my lip choice. Online these beauties range from $6-15USD and can be shipped anywhere. I quickly went online and bought 3 matte lipglosses. I also learned that this brand is Vegan and Cruelty-free, so only good things for our lips while we slay all day.  https://thelipbar.com see pics below.
  1. Dahnaï Beauty specializes in handmade lipglosses and body oils for women and men. YASSSSSS! When you just need a hint of healthy shine, there are lip glosses that are slightly pigmented with a hint of your perfect nude in these beauties to add to your lip colour. Or wear it without and feel moisturized without the grease. I own Mademoiselle and Mocha. Both available online for $9.  https://dahnaibeauty.com/collections/all
Pictured: Temeka wearing Mocha by Dahnaï over Diva by PabaCosmetics

3. ColoredRaine is a brand created by Loraine R. Dowdy who delights in making blushes, eyeshadows, highlighters, and lip wear in such rich pigments that compliment the skin and make it pop especially if you’re a woman of colour. The Matte lipsticks I own are bright and moisturizing with the staying power of a matte that might dry you out without doing so. The site frequently has sales on everyday favs and their pricing is also comparable with any of the major brands out there. I nearly lost my bank account when I went online and saw the affordability of these beautiful products and the packaging is great too. Almost as great as their product offers is their customer service. I have received personal emails from the CEO thanking me for returning and for supporting their business. It’s these small touches that make any business great. Follow this brand on Instagram where you can see many pairing their bold lip looks with amazing eye colour.  I own Amazing Raine, Bodacious, and Electric Raine in their Matte lipgloss section and Implicated from their ColouredRaine X Power line. I can’t wait to bag a few more. See pictures below for just how well these almost pastel colours pop! LOVE IT ALL! https://colouredraine.com/collections/all  

4. NagiCosmetics is a brand from Quebec, Canada that got me with their deep nudes that compliment my skin in any season. Their colours are hypoallergenic which I love to hear since my skin can be so finicky and sensitive and they offer a wide range of all colours to Black Women. I purchased a deep brown from their Matte Velour Liquid Lipstick collection titled 822- RUM. This colour had me looking forward to Autumn and the rich hues of the season. This lip and some highlighted cheeks have me celebrating all the good things God has given us. Who’s ready for Thanksgiving on either side of the border? My lips are! Check them out here                                https://nagicosmetics.com/products/matte-velours-liquid-lipstick 

If you can think of Black-Owned Beauty brands that offer great lip wear, please let me know, so I can try it and swatch it and share it with you all. Let’s support Black-Owned Cosmetic Brands who already know how we want that colour, the one showing through the bottle to pop and transfer to our lips and not off of them no matter what shade our skin may be.

Support and #WearItLikeYouMeanIt

Post #2- Fall in Love with Colour -Autumn is here!

Fall Favourites! #WearItLikeYouMeanIt

’TIS AUTUMN! The season of Colour! What are your favourite fall colours? All of them? Me too! Hahaha! Now, of all the seasons, I do prefer Summer but Fall is a fun way to change it up with the deep rich tones Summer usually overlooks. Now, I am biased because Orange is my favourite colour anyway, but a good rust orange will get me every time. And I can’t leave out deep auburn purples and deep burgundy reds or, plum purples, and burnt browns which are some of the most fun colours to wear. It’s no wonder God uses them to dress up the earth as we prepare for Winter.

It’s a slow Fall into Winter as the temperature drops and the sun still shines but with less warmth, especially for us in North America. These colours feel like the right sweater and a snuggle when worn. It’s like Sweater Weather, but for your lips. Sometimes all I need is an eye liner and a deep rich red with my coziest sweater. In Autumn, I can be bold without being bright and I find that my lips happen to look fuller (if that’s possible) and lush as if preparing for the perfect pre-kiss pout. I decided to take my cue from the leaves already fallen for this photo op. Jilly and I headed out to a park in Toronto and enjoyed Nature presenting the perfect reminder that colour always looks good on colour. There were so many leaves still on the trees and so many covering the trails on the ground. I noticed however that the rusted yellows weren’t grouped by themselves, nor were the reds all lined in a row. If Nature can mix and match then I can too. So I dug down into the makeup drawer and pulled out my go-tos for Fall. I initially pulled 15 different colours and realized that even I was overwhelmed, so here are 7, 6 staples and 1 daring bold I bet you didn’t know you could enjoy this time of year!

Lip #1-Superstay Matte Ink in Fighter by Maybelline

This is one of my go to nudes for this time of year. It goes on easy and I find it lasts long through that lunch option as well. It is subtle enough for that eye drama you may want to wear yet bold enough for a simple mascara and lip adventure.

Lip #2- Rum Cake by NagiCosmetics

This dark brown is everything! If you want depth to your nude or drama or you choose to brighten up your day, this brown can do it all. This glides on like butter and dries quickly on the lip without drying it out. What I love is that this is probably someone’s nude but also compliments my skin as the contrast allows for any queen to reign well on any Autumn day.

Lip #3- Rust by MakeUp For Melanin Girls (MFMG)

I absolutely had to include this colour. It’s the chameleon of the bunch as it was perfect for Summer and also shows up strong for Fall. How could it not, with this rich orange, and just a hint of tangerine peeking out?! This colour lives up to its name but gives all the sexiness to lips that Rust never could.

Lip #4-Superstay Matte Ink in Globetrotter by Maybelline

Yes, this is another Superstay favourite I discovered last Autumn. Because I love orange so much, I try to find ways to wear it without alerting traffic every single time. I am aware that orange is…well, Orange. And though it is perfectly fine to garner all of the attention of an entire room from time to time, I actually would like to keep it moving on a regular basis while enjoying me. This colour is a deeper orange than the last colour mentioned and adds a little joy to my face when worn in this season. This is my Autumn orange and I’m here for it!

Lip #5- Flesh 3 by Pat McGrath

This lipstick colour was giving me life as I stood applying its red-ish burgundy goodness to my lips in the midst of the fallen leaves and evergreens. It glides on well and feels absolutely luxurious. It is a deep red with no apology. This one is good in the morning, noon or night. Wear this in the Fall or anytime you need to love on YOU. My love, I couldn’t help but pose, because I had the lip colour on to match my confidence. And though it is bold, it is deep, not bright, giving you some of the drama of a regular red (what is a regular red anyway?) but the quiet of a nude. No Boredom here, love!

Lip #6- Crown Me by The LipBar

Here is the Wildcard! The bonus! The daring bold you probably thought you couldn’t wear in the Fall. This purple is that. PURPLE! This pops even without permission, but I am not mad at it! The LipBar hit the nail on the head with this one. Why not wear purple in Autumn?! It’s fun and bold but rich and deep like any other Fall colour. However, this one is the show-stopper, the traffic-blocker, the-make-the-staring-man-fall-down lipgloss you’ve always needed. Crown Me, rightfully named, makes me feel royal. ( Check out 2 Peter 2:9 in the bible for my regal status). I hope you feel this when you wear purple too. Slay Queen!

Lip #7- Matte Satin in Cashmere by Milani

This is my most recent discovery of the bunch. I stumbled upon this brand in the drug store a couple months ago. It was one of the weirdly placed brands. Not quite in the make up section but not far away enough that you couldn’t pay for it at the make up counter. I recently had a rinse applied to my natural hair and this colour perfectly matched it. Then I added purple braids to my hair and it still compliments it. And then it became Autumn, and it perfectly welcomed the season with warmth and easy application. True to it’s name, it dries matte while feeling like a moisturizing satin lipgloss. I am loving this deep plum.

What are your Fall favourites? Plums, Orange, Burgundy? Shiny, satin or matte? I’m always looking to be schooled on all things lip wear, so please share your go-to for this season. Don’t forget to use #WearItLikeYouMeanIt when posting and tag @thelipstickblogger for a re-share.

All Pictures captured by Jilly (beautiful friend and one of the besties)

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