Idon’t usually go in for celeb makeup lines, they’re just not my thing and I always think that they’re done as a way to make money; shove your name on a lipstick and watch the £££ roll in. I still haven’t bothered to try a Kylie product, and I have nails longer than the KKW Kontour Sticks – I am not about that hype product life, not to mention they never release on UK shores. So, when I first heard about Fenty Beauty I was PRAYING it would be something amazing, that Rhi wouldn’t fail us, and she didn’t. You can tell Riri has thought about this line and her fans too. You can see the thought in the line, from the packaging to how the line can grow and evolve. It would have been so easy for her to just pop her name on anything and laugh all the way to the bank. It would have been easy for her to just put out the usual 10 shades, or not bother with complexion products at all, but she hasn’t. You can tell she has put her thoughts and passion in to the range and not just taken the easy way out – in fact she’s done what most giant makeup corps can’t/won’t do, she’s thought of EVERYONE. Yes, she’s thought of the super pale girl with yellow/neutral undertones, she’s thought of the glorious deep dark skinned girls with cool undertones, and she’s thought of every shade in-between. I always despair at the shade ranges brands offer, and not just for fair girls but for dark girls (who have it a lot worse than pale girls). A lot of complexion products offer a couple of undertones in their pale shades, but virtually none in their deep shades, it’s like they think every dark skin is the same. Well, the Fenty Beauty range has 40 foundation shades, so the likelihood you’ll find your shade there is pretty darn high. However, I do hope she adds some even deeper darker shades in, Nyma Tang or Nyakim Gatwech deep.
I was amazed to be invited to the launch at Harvey Nichols in Leeds and it was there that I was given some background info on the products and why Rhi chose to do these products, and not bright shadows and crazy liquid lipsticks like most of us (including me) were expecting. The range is based around the Rhianna look and how she achieves it; many MUAs advise on getting a glow from the get go, with dewy primers and bases, whereas Rhi likes a fully matte base to start and then add your glow in with highlighters and cream shimmers. Personally I am all for that, I love a full coverage foundation and there’s no such thing as full coverage dewy, so matte is my bae. I did find it a little strange that there’s also only 1 lip product in 1 shade in the range (for now?), but that’s because she’s developed a rosy gloss that suits every skin tone – personally I ain’t about that gloss life, my hair blows in every direction and I just can’t, so I didn’t really test out the gloss, but it was a pretty shade. I’m so glad she went with the products she did, as I think liquid lipsticks and crazy eyeshadows would have been too predictable and easy. I’m also over the moon she decided to launch on the same day everywhere, and that’s it’s in the UK (exclusive to Harvey Nichols) – us UK girls often get left out of the makeup game for exciting launches, or have to pay extortionate customs charges to bag a beauty buy.
The Foundations (£26.00)
There’s 40 shades in the collection, and there’s a mix of warm, warm peach, neutral and cool. The range is split in to 4 shade categories; the 100’s (light), 200’s (medium), 300’s (tan) 400’s (deep). Each range then has various shades in with different undertones – so shade 100 is pale neutral, 220 medium warm peach, 340 tan cool, 490 deep cool. On the Harvey Nichols website they have model images for each colour you select, so there’s a model who wears that shade for each one, which is really helpful if you can’t get in to a store. For reference I was matched to 120 for my pale winter colour, and 150 for my summer shade (in Double Wear I am 1N0 & 1N2, respectively). The formula is marketed as a medium to full buildable coverage in a soft matte. I swatched a few shades and a little goes a REALLY long way, they dry down pretty quickly, feel fairly light (a lot lighter than ELDW) with minimal oxidising. I can’t yet comment on the coverage claims as I haven’t tested it out on my broken out skin, but I am hopeful I may have just found a new foundation fave.
There’s a few brushes in the range, along with a blending sponge and some blotting papers. The brushes all felt incredibly soft and I loved the mini brushes which look great for throwing in your bag. There’s 3 mini brushes (powder touch up, concealer and highlighter) and 2 large brushes (foundation and highlighter) in the range, priced between £19.00 & £26.00, which is a pretty standard price for high end brushes. The Precision Makeup Sponge (£13.00) felt like a great mix between the Real Techniques sponge & Beauty Blender; soft and bouncy but a little of the RT firmness which is great for contouring with the flat edge. There’s blogging papers too, which is a blast from the past, and there’s re-fills available for the case at £8.00 a pop.
Match Stix Matte Skinstick(£21.00)
There’s 20 shades available in these stick complexion products that are aimed at concealing, contouring, correcting and highlighting. The same as the foundations these are split in to 4 sections; light, medium, tan and dark with 5 shades in each section. The formula of these is more a balm style that it is a traditional cream stick, and that makes for amazing blendability. They glide on to your skin with ease and blend in with a few pats of your finger. Despite having a balm consistency they don’t leave a greasy feeling on your skin, and just sink in and blend – however they’re a little thicker in consistency to the shimmer stix & have a matte finish.
Match Stix Shimmer Skinstick (£21.00)
When I first saw some of the shades I was taken aback, they were bright even for me. I took one look at Ridiic, a bright orange, and nearly ran for the hills. However once swatched it was the most stunning colour and will look so good on darker skin tones; it’s an orange shade with slight coral tones and that warm shimmer similar to NARS Orgasm. A few stand outs for me were Confetti, a lilac highlight colour, Yacht Life, a stunning peach pink shade, Starstruck an icy pearl shade perfect for pale girls. For darker skinned people Sinamon, Rum & Chilli Mango are gonna look so fricking good on you. These are multi purpose so can be used as eye shadow bases, blushers, highlighters and lip colours. I love Confetti, which is the shade I have; it’s a pale lilac with fine glitter in and looks so ethereal on the skin.
Killawatt Freestyle Highlighter Duo (£26.00)
I want them all… Every single last one. There’s some absolute stunning shades in these duos (and the single versions). There were originally only meant to be 5 shades, however Rhi loved the shimmering gold shade (Trophy Wife) so much that she couldn’t not include it, and I have to agree, it’s a standout and likely gonna be one of the best sellers. I mean there’s no way I could pull it off as a highlighter, but it’s gonna look out of this world on deeper skin tones, and would work well as an eyeshadow or inner corner highlight for paler people. The other single is Metal Moon which is for the pale girls and is a white gold pearl shade similar to NARS Albatross. The powders are very finely milled and also a kind of creamy hybrid, although certainly not a cream product – they feel almost cushiony when you swatch them. The duos come with 2 similar-ish shades in, that work well together (lighter on top and darker just above your contour) and look just as gorgeous used alone. My favourites were Girl Next Door / Chic Phreak which is a pinky peach duo that I I have worn since I got it on Friday (yes, even round the house with no other makeup on, I love it that much). My 2nd favourite is Lightning Dust / Fire Crystal a light pearly duo that is perfect for pale skins and deep skins alike and will be next on my list to snap up after the foundation.
So, what’s my overall opinion? LOVE. IT. LOVE. HER. I love that the range isn’t what I thought, it’s better. I love that she’s not taken the easy route and has included everyone in her makeup launch. The packaging is to die for, millennial pink all the way, and the match stix click together via magnets which is pretty cool. I have to admit that I will happily drop all my money on about 90% of this range (I don’t need more brushes in my life). I am surprised I have fallen for a celeb makeup line and that the line itself has been produced with such care and attention – apparently it was 2 years in development. I don’t think I’ll love another celeb makeup line quite like this, not even if Lorde, Hayley Williams or FKA Twigs bring out a full line. Props to Rhianna, the woman has done what other makeup companies struggle to do; include everyone.