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Tag: makeup for summer (page 1 of 6)

Protecting dark skin from the sun! – Yes, we too need to wear sunscreen!

The sun!

It’s 2015, and there are still a lot of people who believe that people with medium to dark skin do not need to wear sun protection. Yes, we could sit in the sun longer before burning, but that will inevitably have a negative effect on your skin for years to come. And it has been shown that the incidence of cancerous cells occur less in people with tan or darker skin, but the cases tend to be more severe as they are often caught later.

So (I’m about to get a little technical here) what does a sunscreen do? Sunscreens contain ingredients that provide protection against two types of radiation from the sun – UVA and UVB, which stands for Ultraviolet Type A and Ultraviolet Type B. Some sunscreens are physical sunscreens, i.e. they physically block or reflect the sun’s rays, or chemical sunscreens that absorb UV rays, therefore preventing it from the rays reaching the skin. When looking for a sunscreen, make sure it is labelled as a broad-spectrum or UVA/UVB product.

What do these rays do?

UVA rays can penetrate the dermis layer of skin, which is the thickest layer of skin and it protects the skin from stress. UVA contributes to premature aging, i.e. sagging and wrinkling.

UVB rays affect the upper layer of skin, the epidermis, and causes burning of the skin known as sunburn. This is the reason why sun spots or areas of hyperpigmentation appear in sun damaged skin. The skin produces excess melanin to protect from those UV rays!

Finding suitable sunscreens for dark skin is still problematic. Sometimes I think that companies really don’t care to bring out a product that works on all skintones. The first question that any person of colour asks is, “Will it leave a white residue on my skin?” Yes, so many sunscreens leave a white cast on the skin (usually from the zinc or titanium dioxide). You can stand up and rub the lotion onto your skin all day long and it will still leave you looking a little ashy. If you are going to wear a foundation, then it is not as obvious, but what if you want to go bare-faced? I even have this problem when testing out foundations that contain SPF, many of them still come off ashy on dark skin. So that’s problem #1.

I have another problem. I am virtually allergic to almost all sunscreens available in the US. I have not quite figured out which SPF ingredient or the ratio of ingredients that I am allergic to, but it is annoying. After one use, I get the red, itchy/burning sensation of contact dermatitis. Especially around the outer corners of my eyes and upper cheek/temple area. I just have to use the product ones. And I don’t even look at lip products with SPF. It turns my lips into sandpaper and it takes more than a week to heal.

Basically there are 2 products that I have found that don’t cause me to itch and that disappears into the skin. It’s my holy grail Anthelios SX Daily Moisturizing Cream with Sunscreen SPF 15 by LaRoche-Posey.

My SPF of choice!

What makes this one pretty unique in the US is that it contains Mexoryl SX, which is the only sunscreen ingredient approved by the US FDA in about 10-15 years. It has been available in Europe for decades, but the US is very slow to adopt newer technologies when it comes to sunscreen. Which kinda sucks as there are sunscreens in Europe that I would love to try.

Anyway, this sunscreen touts UVA/UVB protection, 24-hour long-lasting hydration that is light, non-greasy and safe for sensitive skin (which I can attest to!). This is a white, fairly thick cream that leaves absolutely no white residue on my skin. It contains Parsol 1789 (avobenzone), Mexoryl SX and Octocrylene as its active ingredients. It does provide me with all day moisturization on my face, but I cannot vouch that it lasts 24 hours. The cream is thick enough that I do not need to add another moisturizer even in colder weather. My skin is left with a little sheen that I like on my very dry skin, but for those with oilier skins may prefer something a little more matte. The best thing is that I am not allergic to it!

This product is a little expensive for a daily moisturizer, but it is worth every cent for me. Yeah, I want to keep those wrinkles at bay #foreveryoung. I also wish it came in a higher SPF. It is available at drugstores and online. Also check out the other SPF products from the La Roche-Posey line, they have products that leaves different finishes, formulas or different anti-oxidant properties.

Yes, this is my recommended sunscreen for tan to dark skin. So now, there is NO excuse not to wear sun protection!!!

Check out their other products online.

Overall Grade: A

FTC Disclosure: Products were purchased by me, Noire Tropical Beauty.  All opinions expressed are 100% honest and my own. I have not been compensated for this review.  For more
information, please see my Disclosure Policy.

The musical “The Lion King” teams up with Inglot Cosmetics!

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I recently attended the launch of the Lion King-inspired collection by Inglot Cosmetics. Held at the Inglot Studio in Chelsea Market, I was able to meet a few of the cast members from the highest-grossing Broadway show in New York history!

Savannah Sunset by Inglot. Inspired by The Lion King!

I met one of the performers from The Lion King! This is Bonita, who plays the Hyena!! Check out that red lip!

If you have the opportunity, you should definitely go see the show, it is absolutely worth it! I see why it is one of the most popular musicals in the world.

From PR:

Inglot Cosmetics announces a stunning collaboration with Disney’s The Lion King, one of Broadway’s most beloved Tony-Award winning musicals. Inglot and The Lion King will come together through their shared passion for richness and vibrancy of color reminiscent of African Savannah sunsets and starry nighttime skies.

The Savannah Sunset collection consists of one single matte eye shadow, one single shimmer eye shadow, one eye shadow trio, one blush, one lipstick palette, one nail lacquer, a felt tip liner and a mascara. It is currently available at Inglot boutiques around the world as well as online at As a special bonus, audience members who bring their ticket to Inglot Times Square and like the Inglot Fan page on Facebook will received a 20% discount on their purchase or a free makeover!

So here are some pictures, swatches of the collection, as well as quick look I did with most of the products that I received. Quickly, this is a beautiful collection, very warm and suitable for all skintones. I also think that this palette would work all year round, it’s both very summery and quite appropriate for the autumn. The colours are pigmented and easy to blend. A little ‘dusty’, but not too bad. The eyeliner is also pretty good and it quite easy to make a quick cat eye and it dries down to a semi-glossy finish. The only product that I did not like was the Secret Volume Mascara. It’s one of those plastic-bristle brushes and while it was good at separating the lashes, it did nothing to volumize.

Anyway, check out the collection below!

The eye and cheek palette

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Current favourites for the summer!

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The end of August/beginning of September is often a marked time of year for me. There is always a lot going on at that time. A lot of change. For one it is Independence Day on August 31 for my beloved twin-island nation of Trinidad & Tobago. It’s Labour Day in the US, the beginning of Fashion Week in NY and other major cities and it is the unofficial end of summer! I know, heartbreaking!

As you may know, this year, I dedicated to brows and gorgeous skin. I still love a colourful, somewhat complex eye look (that I WILL wear to the gym), but I wanted to see what else I could do, how else I could challenge myself and not just rely on eyeshadows to give me a beautiful look. I have been enjoying glowy skin, minimal eye makeup and bold lips! A clean look with minimal product.

So here are the products that I have reached for over the past few months.

My summer favourites!

Facial oil – my number 1 for glowy skin! I have been experimenting with different brands and also with making my own! Packed with nutrients that help lock in moisture. Great for ALL skin types, including oily ones. Just need to get those that are thin and similar to natural sebum.

Cream eye shadow sticks – There are a lot of them out there. I like the ones from tarte especially this one in rose gold that is shimmery and not glittery and looks natural on my skin. Makeup done in a few seconds.

Modster Eyeliner by Ardency Inn in Cream – a yellow liner that I use on my lower lashline to brighten up my eyes. Better than using a white pencil

Milani Powder Gel Eye Shadow in 04 Bella Caffé – beautiful texture! Almost matte and it is a few shades lighter that my skin color. Looks barely there and it is a great way to get a clean even look on my eye lids when wearing graphic eyeliner and/or bold lips. I recently did a review here.

Senna Eye Color Glow in Cordovan – One of my favourites! Butter smooth shimmer and great for when I want something chocolate on my lid.

NARS Eye Paint in Black Valley – matte black gel liner. A must for hot weather. Does not budge! I use it with an angled brush to create a winged liner or on my lower waterline.

L’Oreal Voluminous Mascara in Carbon Black – recently rediscovered this and I can see why this is a classic. Great formula, actual volume and intense black colour. A great drugstore find!

Cozzette Tapered Vegan brush in S175 – One of the BEST brushes that I have used. I love a beautiful, well designed handle (love the lacquered purple!). And get this, it is vegan i.e. made with synthetic fibres and is super super soft! I will do a review on this soon. Great for laying a wash of colour on the lids or for definition in the crease.

Becca Beach Tint in Papaya – Holy grail product for years. Cream blush that is water resisitant. Can be subtle or bold if you like. I have written about it lots of times.  I need to get the liquid version of this!

Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics Stained Gloss in Dekadent – Don’t let the tube fool you. This gives a glossy shine with a hint of colour.

Kat Von D Painted Love Lipstick in Stiletto – a reddish orange. LOVE THIS! Gorgeous colour! I have posted it on Instagram many times. Must have for women of colour. Very bold!

Magnolia Makeup Illuminating Powder in Soul Glo – Makeup brand from some fabulous women in New Orleans and this is one of their signature products! I use this a subtle hightlight on the high points of my cheekbones. Always get compliments when using this. Not chunky or glittery. Perfect for dark and very dark skin, but they also have lighter colours.

Becca Cosmetics Shimmering Skin Perfector Pressed in Topaz – lots of hype on this product and it is well deserved! Easy to apply and it just lights up my face. I keep saying, don’t sleep on Becca. They are fantastic and very women of colour friendly. Silky soft and smooth. Finely milled. Gorgeous on the skin. Lots of compliments on that one too!

That’s it!

What have you been using?

Milani Gel Powder Eyeshadow: a quick review!

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Hey! So I recently posted about the release of a new formula of eye shadow by Milani, the Gel Powder Eyeshadow. I was anxious about trying these out, so I picked up just one at my local drugstore.

This year, I have been all about that gorgeous skin and bright lips, more of a minimalistic, glowy look. I bought colour 04 Bella Caffé, which is a satin matte shade.

Milani Cosmetics Gel Powder Eyeshadow in Bella Caffé 04

The packaging is basic, sand-coloured plastic that feels quite sturdy.


The product itself is domed shaped and reminds me of baked eye shadows. There is the tiniest hint of a sheen, or shimmer, but the pieces are so small, they are barely visible. Bella Caffé is a beautiful medium taupey brown. The swatch on the Milani website is a lot darker that what it is in reality.

Swatch, Bella Caffé 04

It reminds me of a brighter, slightly lighter version of M.A.C.’s Wedge eye shadow. It is very smooth to the touch, it feels quite velvety and finely milled. This shade is pigmented but not intensely pigmented, and that might have to do with the fact that it is a lighter colour, but I did not have a problem building it up on my lid. It still did not look chalky or flaky and remained smooth. It also blended quite well. I will get a couple of the deeper and brighter shades to test how pigmented they are. Bella Caffé also got a little ‘dusty’ but not overly so. On my skin, this is just a couple of shades lighter, so it evens out the skin colour on my lids and it not shiny at all.  I got about 6 hours of wear without a primer on my lids before I saw a little bit of creasing.

I have been wearing this on my eyelid as my everyday, work-appropriate, neutral barely there makeup look. Just a little matte brown shadow to define the crease, gel liner and mascara. I also sometimes pair it with a bold lip and some facial oil (more about that soon!)

This is a really nice colour, and these shadows are definitely worth checking out. Really great quality for a drugstore brand and at about US$3.99, you cyah go wrong! There is about 1.4g of product, which is pretty standard for eye shadows. Find them at CVS or online at

Overall Grade: A-


FTC Disclosure: Products were purchased by me, Noire Tropical Beauty.  All opinions expressed are 100% honest and my own. I have not been compensated for this review.  For more information, please see my Disclosure Policy.

New products from NARS Cosmetics: Summer 2014 & more 413 BLKR

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From PR:

NoireTropicalBeauty NARS Summer 14 413BLKR


Sleek bikinis, towering stilettos – a cosmopolitan catwalk. Dive into this sexy poolside setting with the NARS Summer 2014 Collection – powerfully provocative and daring.

Eyes pop with perfectly synchronized eyeshadows including neon lemon lime and icy lavender while smoky rose quartz and bronze add depth and definition. Feel the heat with a soft and sultry peach champagne for cheeks and a bold geranium for nails.


  •    TROPICAL PRINCESS DUO EYESHADOW – Neon lemon lime and Icy lavender (USD$34)
  •    LOST COAST DUO EYESHADOW – Golden pewter and Lilac snow (USD$34)
  •    MALACCA SINGLE EYESHADOW – Iridescent peacock (USD$24)
  •    IRAKLION SOFT TOUCH SHADOW PENCIL – Smoky rose quartz (USD$24)
  •    BAALBEK EYE PAINT – Bronze (USD$25)
  •    HOT SAND ILLUMINATOR – Peach champagne (USD$30)
  •    LIBERTANGO NAIL POLISH – Geranium (USD$19)
  •    TURKISH DELIGHT LIP GLOSS – Pink sherbet (USD$26)
  •    ORGASM LIP GLOSS – Peachy pink with shimmer (USD$26)
  •    WONDER LIP GLOSS – Sheer mandarin orange with pink and gold shimmer (USD$26)
  •    SALAMANCA LIP GLOSS – Pink flamingo (USD$26)
  •    PRISCILLA LIP GLOSS – Shocking pink (USD$26)

Available from April 15 at and at the NARS boutiques

NoireTropicalBeauty NARS Summer 14 413BLKR

Tropical Princess Duo Eyeshadow

NoireTropicalBeauty NARS Summer 14 413BLKR

Lost Coast Duo Eyeshadow

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