Jackie Aina is a professional makeup artist and Nigerian beauty blogger from Southern California. Servicing clients and weddings throughout the Los Angeles, Orange County, Inland Empire and San Diego areas. Also specializing in editorial, commercial and beauty makeup since 2009. Available for travel and work internationally.
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Recently I had the pleasure of collaborating with the amazing Bobbi Brown Cosmetics and we put together my top Do’s Don’ts and Duh’s for women of color for their I Love Makeup channel on YouTube. I absolutely had a blast working with the team, playing with some BB products and overall how much creative control I had over most, if not all of the process. By the way, these tips are not only for chocolate divas but will help Latina’s, East Indian and even Asian women as well.
So here are my tips! By the way, stay tuned for information on how you can enter a GIVEAWAY at the end of the video!
Don’t let ANYONE tell you that you can’t rock bold colors. Whether it be on the eyes, the lips, the cheeks, wherever. Obviously you all know this isn’t something I have a problem with. But I’ve always felt like because my skin is dark and has color to it wearing bolder, brighter colors just looks amazing because it doesn’t contrast as much. See what I mean?
Foundation Matching – Now this one can obviously get a lot more in depth but I’ll sum it up. Obviously you want to try to match your foundation as close as possible but if you’re ever in a pinch or emergency situation, let’s say you’re limited on what shades you have to choose from and don’t know what to choose, always go warmer! It’s much safer than choosing a shade that’s lighter than you and getting the white cast of death…
When it comes to shadows, go easy on the metallics. Why you ask? They can come across as ashy dull and gray. Now that doesn’t mean skip them altogether because they do look quite fabulous depending on WHERE they are placed. A little pop of metallic on the inner corners of the eyes will make for a brighter and more awake look. But once you start trying to apply the silvers and gunmetals all over the eyelid and they’re smudged out that’s where I find they start to dull our complexion and look ruddy. Often times our undertones are on the warmer, golden yellows or reds so again, use them sparingly. Have you ever seen darker woman wearing a silver or frosty white eyeshadow along her lower lash line? Glitters being the exception because they are chunky and true to color when applied. They look and reflect their true and exact colors when you apply them. Now again, these are TIPS and guidelines yall. I’m not telling you this is the case for everyone because it’s most certainly not! But for those of you who find yourself clueless when it comes to makeup this is a good start
Speaking of makeup newbies, does blush scare you? I know a lot of women, including chocolate divas who feel as if blush just does not look good on them. The devil is a lie girl! Blush looks amazing on women of color! My tip to transition into it is starting with orange and corals. I KNOW it sounds much scarier than it actually is. But orange and coral is actually quite subtle on our skin. My personal favorite is Rule eyeshadow (yes I said eyeshadow) from MAC used as a blush, or Devil blush from MAC. Spice blush from Bobbi Brown makes for the perfect, evening wear or date night blush.
Nude can be done, but it must be done right! Ladies ladies ladies, we simply cannot subject ourselves to slapping on some Blankety or Fleshpot and calling it a day. No. Not today you don’t, no ma’am! There are a lot of people who think women of color can’t pull off nude lips. We most certainly can, we just kind of have to tweak them a but. Always wear with a soft brown or nude (whatever nude is for you) lipliner. Yes lipliner isn’t just for the 80’s and 90’s anymore or for your mom. My personal favorite is Cork from MAC because it’s soft and not too dark. Once the liner has been applied and then the lipstick it makes for a much more natural ‘in-between’ color between your complexion and the lipcolor. That way you don’t get that Tyrone Biggums white ring around your lips.
See how it looks so much more natural on the right side? If you don’t see the difference here you’ll DEFINITELY see it in a flash photo, and it won’t be pretty!
Please be sure to ‘like’ and share the video on YouTube. If you want to see more of me on the I Love Makeup channel, give em a shout and let them know! Whatever you do be sure to subscribe to their channel! They’ve collaborated with some other delightful YouTubers including Weylie of Ilikeweylie and Sophia AKA Fashionista804.
This is probably one of the biggest opportunities for my channel to date and I just wanted to say thank you to the Bobbi Brown and I Love Makeup team for trusting me with your brand and allowing me the opportunity!! Thank you for not taking me serious and allowing me to be my usual corny goofball self lol
Blondes have more fun….or do they? I can’t lie, ever since I decided to bleach my hair I have been even more in love with my natural hair than before. Didn’t know it was possible but…
I LOVE the way my curls look much more defined now. When my hair was darker all the curls just kind of blended into each other because my curls are SUPER tight. Some added lightness definitely feels more spunky and more like my personality.
Bleaching your hair, especially if you’re natural, is NOTHING to take lightly ladies. I had been pondering on it for weeks. Bleach can be very damaging on your hair if not taken care of properly, so saying I researched this would be an understatement. Of course it helps because that I am a cosmetology student too, having access to more resources and products helped. I did two different strand tests just to make sure my curls could withstand the bleach, and my hair seemed to react fine to it. So I knew I would be alright if I went through with it.
sidenote: aint it RIDICULOUS how short my hair looks CURLY versus straight?! LoL smh, shrinkage is a *BLEEP*
I finally decided I was going to waltz on over the the Toni and Guy Hairdressing Academy and paid my girl Jackie Ochoa a visit to have her do my hair. I’ve always known that they are rockstars with color and formulating so I knew I could trust her. And this is what we came up with! BY THE WAY, I did leave my roots dark on purpose, it’s probably one of my favorite looks. I love the look of two-tone hair colors and since I don’t like to spend a lot of time at the salon I wanted a hair color that could grow out nicely with minimal maintenance. In a year or two since I’m growing my hair out it will just look like a huge curly ombre fro.
The purpose of this post is I wanted to chat with you all a little bit about how my hair care routine has changed now that my hair is bleached for those of you that may have bleached hair or may be wanting to do the same. I’ve almost had to completely change my hair care routine now, as if my hair wasn’t already porous enough it’s even more now! (If you don’t know what porous means, it’s basically a fancy way of saying you’re hair is on the dryer side.)
Products that I never really gave the time of day have now become my holy grail staple items. When I first for my hair done it was blow dried and ironed straight, and getting it back to curly was a little scary as I thought my hair had been damaged, it felt very VERY frail, thin, soft, and weak when I first tried going back to curly. I’m not gonna lie, I panicked a little bit thinking, WTF, I did a strand test, why is my hair acting brand new! But two days later my hair was completely back to normal.
So here’s my staple items and routine, bare in mind it LOOKS a lot more complicated than it actually is. Curly girl problem number 459: using the same products over and over again and getting different results. LOL story of my life! So I find that if I rotate product every so often that have the same purpose I get better results. IE, switching conditioners every other week, switching moisturizers every other day, etc
Protein The FIRST thing I did to get my hair into shape was a PROTEIN TREATMENT. I wouldn’t recommend doing this more than twice a month as too much protein can be very drying for the hair. The Mizani Kerafuse treatment is an intense strengthening treatment that fortifies and strengthens the hair. I would recommend this for both natural and relaxed hair. When I do protein treatments regularly I notice my hair doesn’t shed/break off as frequently, it instantly feels stronger too. I have very dense but FINE hair and after doing a treatment it will temporarily feel more normal to coarse on some parts of my hair. The thing about protein treatments is after you’ve done one your hair won’t feel miraculous; if anything it will feel a little dry, it’s up to you to add back some of that moisture into your hair. The Queen Helene cholesterol treatment is awesome for bleached or over-processed hair. I’m going to make it point to get back to my once a month protein treatment and do a cholesterol treatment at least once every other week.
SHAMPOO I rarely use shampoos anymore. Lately I’ve been taking a liking to cleansing conditioners or cowashing (cleansing with a conditioner) as it’s more moisturizing for my hair and doesn’t contain harsh sulfates. This one is from Lisa Rachel. It’s a DEAD ringer for the Wen haircare system and I will be reviewing this product soon. It’s worked wonders for my hair! I cleanse my hair about twice a week.
CONDITIONERS Speaking of Wen, since trying their system I still have some leftover SixThirteen that I intend to use until it’s gone. Some of my oldies but goodies include the Herbal Essences Hello Hydration and Mane ‘N Tail Conditioner. I NEVER fully rinse out my conditioners FYI, I always keep a bit of it in as leave in.
MOISTURIZERS After hopping out the shower and conditioning I’ll slap on some moisturizer. However, this can be a lengthy process since my hair is dense, I take small sections of my hair at a time so it can get moisturized evenly throughout. I’ll go back and forth between the Shea Moisture Coconut & Hibiscus Curl & Style Milk (LOVE the coconut smell of this stuff) or the Wella Age Restore Restoring Treatment. The vegetable glycerine I got from Whole Foods and it was only like 5 bucks! I sometimes mix literally a drop of it with my moisturizers per section for added moisture. Vegetable glycerine is a humectant, which means it draws in moisture from the air.
I love the Eco Styler Gel because it really helps to lock my curls in place and keep them looking defined and shiny. It’s alcohol free and won’t have my hair feeling crunchy or dry.
Misc Remember how I said earlier when I first bleached my hair and I tried going back to curly it felt super thin and fragile like? These two products helps restore its thickness a LOT instantly. First the Sebastian Thickefy Foam because it does exactly what it says it does: makes my hair feel thicker instantly. I do about 3 pumps and apply at the roots. And the Paul Mitchel Dramatic Repair for blondes is a keratin pick me up, my hair instantly feels softer and stronger, I get the perfect amount of protein AND moisture in one. This is usually the very last product I will use after I’ve styled my hair and I’m on the way out the door. Sidenote: Shoutout to my girl Azia Sawyer for putting me up on game about the Paul Mitchell stuff
Oil/Sealant Sometimes to “seal” my ends or at night before going to bed I’ll rub a little coconut oil in my hair. If you think about it, the ends of your hair are years and years worth of old hair so it’s the most fragile and needs the most care. Sealing those ends off ensures the moisture stays locked in and keeps hair from breaking off. This coconut oil I get from Trader Joe’s smells awesome, I use it for my hair and body and it makes my hair feel super soft.
African Shea Butter Because this stuff is so hard to the touch, I don’t use it for much more than around my hairline area when I’m wearing my hair up and I want to my hairline to stay nice and flat and neat. It’s WAY too hard, and I prefer softer shea butters without any extra additives like this one (I believe someone once told me it’s the palm oil that makes it super hard like that)
Clarifying Good old fashioned clarifying shampoos like the one I use from Paul Mitchel work to really deep clean the hair and remove any buildup. Because I do use a ton of products in my hair and I don’t use shampoos I make it a point to deep clean it at least once a month, but when I don’t feel like dealing with that I do a vinegar rinse. Mix equal parts vinegar and water totaling about 6 ounces. After I’ve cleansed my hair in the shower I tilt my head all the way back and let the rinse glide through my hair. I’ve leave it in for a few minutes and rinse it out. I THEN ADD CONDITIONER for the simple fact that the apple cider vinegar smells awful. Some people do not advise you to add conditioner after a rinse but my hair can’t do anything without conditioner so that’s not an option for me lol. These you can purchase at your local Whole Foods are grocery stores.
And finally, what would a natural hair routine be without a good ol…
Deep Condioner For deep conditioners sometimes I’ll just doctor my own up by taking regular conditioner, adding raw honey and oils and just sit under heat for 30 minutes. But when I don’t feel like doing all that I use the Nounou Pak from Davines. But let’s be honest, this bad boy is like $30 and AIN’T NOBODY got time, or the money, for all that (I got this on discount from my school, but other than that I wouldn’t even bother with that price.) The purpose of deep conditioning is allowing the product to penetrate the hair shaft, as oppose to instant conditioners which just coat the hair or get rinsed out. With that said, really any conditioner can become a deep treatment if you add heat which will then open the cuticle of the hair and allow it to penetrate. I do this at least once a week.
*sigh* doesn’t that sound like a lengthy and exhausting process? lol sometimes it can be lol but it’s not too bad. These are my hair care steps: Cleanse, condition, moisturize, add a little gel and style. I may add in some thickefy foam or the Paul Mitchel Dramatic Repair for some added bounce if need be. At night before I go to bed I’ll moisten my hair with a little water and add a little coconut oil, wrap it in a satin scarf and go to bed. Deep condition once a week and cholesterol treatment once a week. Protein treatment once a month and vinegar rinse maybe every other week if my hair starts to feel too gunky. Dassit!
IF you’re considering bleaching your hair, please do not try to DIY and see a professional stylist!!!! Some things are better left to a licensed cosmetologist and are not to be experimented with. Bleach is one of THE harshest ingredients you can put on your hair and yet time and time again we still do it. All in the name of beauty lol. I knew what I was getting myself into so I already had the right mindset, products and knowledge in place before I decided to go through with it. It’s not something you should rush into or do on a whim. And when in doubt strand test, strand test STRAND TEST. That way you can see if your curls will be compromised after they’ve been bleached.
If you’re natural hair is dark like mine and FINE in texture, also remember it may be more ideal to go lighter in stages maybe over the course of 6 months to a year, or even try highlights. That way you can get lighter in stages and work your way up to that Kelly Osbourne level 10 pastel/lavender blonde…JUST KIDDING To be quite honest for me considering how much more I have to take care of my hair now for it was still definitely worth it!! Now I’m sitting here thinking, what the heck took me so long?! This blonde curly fro realness is HOT!
Whoever said “blondes have more fun” probably should have stuck to “blondes have more work to do”, however I’m not complaining
And lastly – there seems to be a lot of controversy stemming from being natural and having your hair colored and/or bleached. All I have to say is have several seats. It seems like a lot of women are trying to make being natural some type of exclusive, elite club that only a select few may have the privilege to be a part of. Little do many of them know PROFESSIONAL stylists could care less about all that. My natural hair texture is STILL the same, therefore, I consider my hair bleach blonde natural owning it and proud! Thank you very much!
OH have I been out of the loop and have missed you guys!!!! This tutorial features a nice, clean and simple look that can be suitable for work or any other professional environment be it an interview or even a business meeting. How many of you skip makeup altogether for work usually? That’s cool too. But every once in a while there’s nothing wrong with showing a more polished, put-together version of yourself. Especially when you really want to make a good impression.
I kept this look simple because I wanted to stay true to its purpose. And I finally got to put my Smashbox freebie palette to use (I got it as a gift at The Makeup Show this year. Go Me!)
Here’s the look and what we used
Smashbox Camera Ready BB Cream | Dark
MAC Brow Pencil | Spiked
MAC Brow Pencil | Strut
MAC Studio Finish Concealer | NW40
MAC Select CoverUp Concealer | NW40
Laura Mercier Tranclucent Setting Powder
Smashbox Limitless Creme Eyeliner | Iris
Smashbox Eyeshadow Quad | Photo Op
Urban Decay 24/7 Glide on Pencil | Baked
MAC Mineralized Skinfinish Natural | Deep Dark
Covergirl Queen Collection Bronzer | Q120
Youngblood Cosmetics Luminous Creme Blush | Champagne Life
MAC Blush | Mocha
Maybelline Falsies Mascara
Maybelline Great Lash Mascara
MAC Lipliner | Cork
MAC Lipstick | Modesty
MAC Lipglass | Magestic
I KNOW I have been slow with videos and posts, I have at least 5-7 vids and blog posts just waited to be edited. Please be patient and keep coming back for updates as I wind down to the last two and a half weeks of school *HUGS* hope you all are having a fabulous week thus far.
I think one of the best traits I have is the ability to be myself.
Many of you may not know this, and I was just talking about this with a friend of mine on a Facebook post, but years and years before I started doing makeup I had plans to pursue fashion design and attend FIDM here in Los Angeles. I remember as early as 10 years old, I used to sketch designs, dresses, sometimes eyebrows and face shapes, shoes, clothes, basically anything that inspired me. Fashion runs deep in my veins underneath all that lipstick and glitter.
When I was younger I was known for having the most off the wall, and sometimes strange, outfit choices.. In the 6th grade I got voted best dressed, here’s what I wore the day my yearbook photo was taken lmao
From the hair to the folded up sleeves where should we begin?
And on a scale of 1-10 how necessary were those butterfly clips in my hair?
So anywho, today’s outfit post is very reminiscent of my old school says as a colorful fashionista, and reminds me that color and originality still lives in me till this day. Except I’m 10 TIMES better at wearing it now LOL
This outfit is NOT for the body conscious. Warning, if you’re going to rock something like this, wear it with confidence and OWN it girl! Because let me tell you, I sure as hell was!
I LIVE for my girl Nikkie Davis, owner of BubbleBabez and clothing designer. She actually MADE this for me. She is SO freakin multitalented it’s ridiculous!! She also does makeup too and if you’re not following her on YouTube by now you should be!
Nikkie’s line of leggings (Nikkie Nylon on instagram) is doing REALLY well. She customizes leggings that instantly SLIM and shape the body. I think she’s an incredible person and what she is doing is entirely too amazing to not be shared with the world. She also has a line of dancewear and makes catsuits!
When I saw this on her instagram I instantly said MINE MINE MINE! It came in a different color, I don’t recall which one, so when she said she’d send me one this was the colour combo I chose. Yall know I love me some teal if you haven’t already noticed!
That’s my post for today I hope everyone has a glorious Labor Day. Personally I don’t really have the day off (I don’t even recall the last time I spent an entire day doing absolutely nothing) but I’m still feeling refreshed and grateful regardless.
It’s hard as hell to blog about the upcoming fall fashion trends when the weather in LA is THIS freaking amazing. Really? Feel my struggle please! It’s September and only getting hotter here. But I swore up and down to people, yall ain’t hearing me, September is one of the hottest months of the year. It generally is hotter than August, why didn’t anyone believe me when I told them that? I warned yall!
Anywho, my girl Marcilargo of La Bella Couture sent me this ombre dress to feature for the blog, it’s one of my favorites I’ve received from her boutique to date. The color combination is sick, and obviously I’m a fan of ombre so I instantly fell in love!
Now of course I’ve got to run my mouth just for a little bit more! I am so excited and proud to say that I graduate from school this Friday! 10 months of hard work, dedication and being broke have finally paid off! LOL For those that don’t know, I am in school for cosmetology at the Vidal Sassoon Academy in California. The state of California requires 1600 hours of education in order for you to become a licensed hairdresser. Aside from the fact that I missed the first two weeks of the program while in Kuwait, various sick/work days and time taken off after my BFF passed away I will still be in school until October. But one more month in school will fly by quicker than I know it.
So anywho, instead of a traditional cap and gown ceremony, the graduating class is to put on a fashion show. I can’t quite say what our theme is YET. But let’s just say it’s a topic that’s near and dear to me I have been busy like a mad woman lately trying to prepare for the show. We are responsible for scouting our own models, doing their cut and hair color on our own. Makeup, props, seating, wardrobe, photography, music, and all the other things that go into a fashion show are expected to be provided on our own. All of this while trying to get a head start on studying for the state board exam. People TRULY underestimate just how much work goes into cosmetology. Which is why there are so many discredited artists to date. So much chemistry, PSYCHOLOGY, tricholgy, study of diseases and bacteria, etc. etc. I am not only doing this for myself, but I’m doing this for everyone who said it wasn’t practical, for everyone who said this wasn’t a “real career”, for everyone who doubted me, to disprove stereotypes of what a hairdresser/makeup artist is. Not saying I have a billion things to prove, but for other young women and men who are pursuing this too and are feeling pressure to quit, DON’T! If it’s your passion no matter what anyone says go for it. Don’t think, just DO. Everything will fall into place. I wish I could explain to you how true this is.
I really love talking about life on my blog as oppose to YouTube. YouTube is fun, but I do feel my more serious readers come to my blog. It’s a blessing being able to share my accomplishments, troubles, sometimes fears and heartaches for you guys. I am so happy I’ve finally made it and can’t wait to be able to dedicate more of my time here to my blog. Best of luck to those of you who are starting school this fall, I hope you enjoyed reading