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9 Beauty And Style Products You Didn't Know You Needed Until Now

Lipsticks, special razors, chokers, and other life essentials.

Alice Mongkongllite / BuzzFeed

What's up, y'all?! Beauty editor Essence here again, and here are a few amazing beauty and style products I love almost as much as I love eating pizza in the club! I'm all here for a good cult brand, but there's also SO much good stuff that's not always in Sephora.

Essence Gant

1. I LIVE for a good red lip, so Bawse Lady by The Lip Bar is everything to me!

Of my never-ending supply of lipsticks, I have more reds than any other shade, and it's the color I wear the most. Bawse Lady by The Lip Bar is, in the words of Lil Scrappy, the shiz ni yee. It's a beautifully-rich red, and tbh, the pic doesn't even do it justice. Every time I wear it I get lots of compliments.The formula lasts all day, even through meals, and it's not drying like some mattes. I like the packaging, too, because it's nice and sleek so I can throw it in my pocket or my little wristlette on days I'm not trying to carry a purse. There are tons of other colors, too, and they're really pretty. I also have Boy Trouble and Drama Queen, and I love them!Get it here for $13, and check out the other liquid mattes and their lipsticks, too.
Essence Gant

Of my never-ending supply of lipsticks, I have more reds than any other shade, and it's the color I wear the most. Bawse Lady by The Lip Bar is, in the words of Lil Scrappy, the shiz ni yee. It's a beautifully-rich red, and tbh, the pic doesn't even do it justice. Every time I wear it I get lots of compliments.

The formula lasts all day, even through meals, and it's not drying like some mattes. I like the packaging, too, because it's nice and sleek so I can throw it in my pocket or my little wristlette on days I'm not trying to carry a purse. There are tons of other colors, too, and they're really pretty. I also have Boy Trouble and Drama Queen, and I love them!

Get it here for $13, and check out the other liquid mattes and their lipsticks, too.

2. I shaved my bikini line with Bevel just to see if it worked, and I'm hooked half a year later.

I used to only get waxed because I thought it was the only way to keep my bikini line razor bump-free. Going in every four to six weeks and letting someone spread hot wax on me and yank out hairs seemed like a small price to pay for smooth and soft skin. And then my world was SHOOK, in a good way, when I was introduced to Bevel, a shaving system intended for men's facial hair.I tried it out only to see if was a viable option for people who preferred shaving their bikini areas over waxing them. I was not at all expecting to become a shave convert, though. In fact, when I did the initial review last August, I didn't even think that I'd continue to use the product. But I've just found it so much more convenient than waking up on the weekends to make a wax appointment. Now, I only go in for a wax if I plan on wearing a swimsuit and want more hair than normal taken off. I also use it to shave my legs and underarms so it's more than served its purpose. Every single time I shave with it, my skin is smooth, and there's no redness, razor bumps, or anything of that nature. It's literally a perfect shave. The products last forever, too. I've had the same starter kit for six months, and I just got down to my last two razors, and I still have quite a few squeezes left of the grooming products. You can check out my detailed review and how to use the product here.Get the Bevel kit here for $79.95, or check out their subscription service and get automatic restocks of the razors and products. The products are also sold individually here on Amazon so it makes restocking what you need super easy.
Essence Gant

I used to only get waxed because I thought it was the only way to keep my bikini line razor bump-free. Going in every four to six weeks and letting someone spread hot wax on me and yank out hairs seemed like a small price to pay for smooth and soft skin. And then my world was SHOOK, in a good way, when I was introduced to Bevel, a shaving system intended for men's facial hair.

I tried it out only to see if was a viable option for people who preferred shaving their bikini areas over waxing them. I was not at all expecting to become a shave convert, though. In fact, when I did the initial review last August, I didn't even think that I'd continue to use the product. But I've just found it so much more convenient than waking up on the weekends to make a wax appointment. Now, I only go in for a wax if I plan on wearing a swimsuit and want more hair than normal taken off. I also use it to shave my legs and underarms so it's more than served its purpose.

Every single time I shave with it, my skin is smooth, and there's no redness, razor bumps, or anything of that nature. It's literally a perfect shave. The products last forever, too. I've had the same starter kit for six months, and I just got down to my last two razors, and I still have quite a few squeezes left of the grooming products. You can check out my detailed review and how to use the product here.

Get the Bevel kit here for $79.95, or check out their subscription service and get automatic restocks of the razors and products. The products are also sold individually here on Amazon so it makes restocking what you need super easy.

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3. This Juvia's Place palette inspires me to stop being basic and wake up early enough (sometimes) to do my eyeshadow.

I love sleep. If it were a person, I'd propose to it, marry it, have all its babies, and cook it three hearty meals a day. So waking up early for anything, especially eyeshadow, is just not something I do. This Juvia's Place Nubian 2 palette, however, won my heart. When I want to look a little extra cute, I'll actually wake up early to incorporate it into my look. There are also three other palettes, Nubian 1, Masquerade, and Saharan.The colors are exceptionally beautiful and rich, the pots are really big, and the pigment is ON. POINT! In the pic I applied Nairobi (gold, bottom right in the palette) with my finger and then lined my eyes with Egypt (green, bottom left in the palette) without using any primer. I tend to keep my makeup very simple and basic, but there's SOOO much you can do with these palettes. Just check out these insanely stunning looks by @jessicadiaz19 and @nikkitutorials!Get it here for $28.99, and you can also shop the other palettes individually or in bundle.
Essence Gant

I love sleep. If it were a person, I'd propose to it, marry it, have all its babies, and cook it three hearty meals a day. So waking up early for anything, especially eyeshadow, is just not something I do. This Juvia's Place Nubian 2 palette, however, won my heart. When I want to look a little extra cute, I'll actually wake up early to incorporate it into my look. There are also three other palettes, Nubian 1, Masquerade, and Saharan.

The colors are exceptionally beautiful and rich, the pots are really big, and the pigment is ON. POINT! In the pic I applied Nairobi (gold, bottom right in the palette) with my finger and then lined my eyes with Egypt (green, bottom left in the palette) without using any primer. I tend to keep my makeup very simple and basic, but there's SOOO much you can do with these palettes. Just check out these insanely stunning looks by @jessicadiaz19 and @nikkitutorials!

Get it here for $28.99, and you can also shop the other palettes individually or in bundle.

4. I thought this Coloured Raine matte lip in Bachelorette would only compliment fair skin, but it actually turned out super cute and had me REALLY feeling myself!

Finding a good nude is hard for just about anybody, and when you're of a darker complexion it's seemingly impossible. But this Bachelorette shade by Couloured Raine came ALL the way through! I thought the color was pretty, but I just assumed it wouldn't compliment my cocoa skin. After I put it on, though, I was pleasantly surprised at how good it looked. It truly is one of those shades that works on a variety of skin tones.Usually for me to pull off a nude, it has to be a very dark, rich chocolate brown. And that's cute and all, but sometimes I just want something more light and subtle. Bachelorette absolutely delivers in this regard. One thing to note, though, is that the color does slightly change with wear. So it started off this light nude that you see in the pic, and by mid-day it had darkened a little to look more like what you see in this pic. Still cute, though!Also, the formula is perfection! It's not drying, and it goes on easy. I have several other Coloured Raine mattes and the quality formula is consistent across all the shades. Get it here for $17, and check out all the colors, too.
Essence Gant

Finding a good nude is hard for just about anybody, and when you're of a darker complexion it's seemingly impossible. But this Bachelorette shade by Couloured Raine came ALL the way through! I thought the color was pretty, but I just assumed it wouldn't compliment my cocoa skin. After I put it on, though, I was pleasantly surprised at how good it looked. It truly is one of those shades that works on a variety of skin tones.

Usually for me to pull off a nude, it has to be a very dark, rich chocolate brown. And that's cute and all, but sometimes I just want something more light and subtle. Bachelorette absolutely delivers in this regard. One thing to note, though, is that the color does slightly change with wear. So it started off this light nude that you see in the pic, and by mid-day it had darkened a little to look more like what you see in this pic. Still cute, though!

Also, the formula is perfection! It's not drying, and it goes on easy. I have several other Coloured Raine mattes and the quality formula is consistent across all the shades.

Get it here for $17, and check out all the colors, too.

5. I love my Beads Byaree Queen Brace Ring 'cause it makes me feel classy even though I'm kinda not.

I love Beads Byaree so much, guys. I actually wrote about them before here when I did a review on their Queen Choker. I got the Queen Brace Ring around the same time. It's such a great piece, especially if you have a thing for dainty jewelry.The size is adjustable, so you can switch which fingers you want to wear it on. I wear mine on the pinky a lot because I automatically think people who wear pinky rings are classier than everyone else. Like, they're the kind of people who can skip the line at a club and they always do priority check-in at airports. The subtlety, though, is probably what I love most about this ring. What it says isn't obvious at first glance; you have to look a little to see "queen." I love that it makes a statement, and that it's wired instead of just being stamped on a plate or charm.Get the Queen and/or King Brace Ring here for $24.
Essence Gant

I love Beads Byaree so much, guys. I actually wrote about them before here when I did a review on their Queen Choker. I got the Queen Brace Ring around the same time. It's such a great piece, especially if you have a thing for dainty jewelry.

The size is adjustable, so you can switch which fingers you want to wear it on. I wear mine on the pinky a lot because I automatically think people who wear pinky rings are classier than everyone else. Like, they're the kind of people who can skip the line at a club and they always do priority check-in at airports. The subtlety, though, is probably what I love most about this ring. What it says isn't obvious at first glance; you have to look a little to see "queen." I love that it makes a statement, and that it's wired instead of just being stamped on a plate or charm.

Get the Queen and/or King Brace Ring here for $24.

6. Never mind the fact that I put on too much powder in the wrong shade and look like a black Morticia Addams. Get into this hand-made choker by Elouinia Exantus!

Elounia Exantus is an accessories brand that makes these really cool, one of a kind pieces. They have chokers, rings, bracelets, glasses, crowns—literally everything! I should probably also mention that the designer makes jewelry for celebs, like Erykah Badu, too! The cool thing about the brand, though, is that the pieces are limited, so the designer only makes a few—sometimes only one–of each. The choker I have, for instance, isn't even available anymore so it's only me and probably one other lucky unicorn somewhere in the world who have it. It's a nice feeling of exclusivity knowing that you won't run into anyone rocking the same shit as you. Also, I especially love that the work is hand-crafted but still looks tasteful. None of it looks like a homemade DIY arts and crafts project. The accessories range from "Oh my, what a steal!" to "GAWT DAMN, THAT'S ALOTTA MONEY!" But I can honestly say that everything is well-priced for the quality of craftsmanship that goes into making it all.Get the pieces here for $10 - $1,000.
Essence Gant

Elounia Exantus is an accessories brand that makes these really cool, one of a kind pieces. They have chokers, rings, bracelets, glasses, crowns—literally everything! I should probably also mention that the designer makes jewelry for celebs, like Erykah Badu, too!

The cool thing about the brand, though, is that the pieces are limited, so the designer only makes a few—sometimes only one–of each. The choker I have, for instance, isn't even available anymore so it's only me and probably one other lucky unicorn somewhere in the world who have it. It's a nice feeling of exclusivity knowing that you won't run into anyone rocking the same shit as you. Also, I especially love that the work is hand-crafted but still looks tasteful. None of it looks like a homemade DIY arts and crafts project. The accessories range from "Oh my, what a steal!" to "GAWT DAMN, THAT'S ALOTTA MONEY!" But I can honestly say that everything is well-priced for the quality of craftsmanship that goes into making it all.

Get the pieces here for $10 - $1,000.

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7. I think I'm emotionally attached to my Made by Malyia Divergent Ear Cuff.

I really, really, reeeally love my Divergent cuff. Ear jewelry has always been my fave of all the accessories, so I love pieces like this. You can rock it whether you're pierced or not, and it's simple and dainty, but still has this little edge factor. i just always feel a little more badass whenever I wear it. I swear it makes me happier. I've also had it for nearly a year now, and it hasn't turned or tarnished!The brand, Made by Malyia, has so many other pieces, too, and they're all dope. There's a range of things, like earcuffs, septum rings, body chains, chokers, and more. It all looks like high-end jewelry, but the price points are actually doable. There's this minimal aesthetic to the brand, so it's a good go-to if you're like, "I want to stand out without trying too hard." I feel like the pieces would also make really great gifts when you're not sure what to get a friend. It's all just so tasteful and minimal, so it's one of those gifts someone would actually be happy to receive. Get it here for $35, and check out the other pieces, too.
Essence Gant

I really, really, reeeally love my Divergent cuff. Ear jewelry has always been my fave of all the accessories, so I love pieces like this. You can rock it whether you're pierced or not, and it's simple and dainty, but still has this little edge factor. i just always feel a little more badass whenever I wear it. I swear it makes me happier. I've also had it for nearly a year now, and it hasn't turned or tarnished!

The brand, Made by Malyia, has so many other pieces, too, and they're all dope. There's a range of things, like earcuffs, septum rings, body chains, chokers, and more. It all looks like high-end jewelry, but the price points are actually doable. There's this minimal aesthetic to the brand, so it's a good go-to if you're like, "I want to stand out without trying too hard." I feel like the pieces would also make really great gifts when you're not sure what to get a friend. It's all just so tasteful and minimal, so it's one of those gifts someone would actually be happy to receive.

Get it here for $35, and check out the other pieces, too.

8. The Swivel app is proof that Black Jesus rides HARD for black women.

I'm willing to bet my cocoa butter, my last Popeye's wing, and three bottles of Hennessy that more black women than not have struggled with finding the perfect stylist. Our hair is exceptionally special and delicate, and it comes in a range of textures and lengths. Finding a professional stylist who knows what they're doing, can get you out of the chair in time for your funeral, AND who has prices that won't force you to choose between rent and beauty is a struggle. And this is why the Swivel app is heaven-sent for black women.The Swivel app "meets all your haircare needs" with its salon locator feature. The app lists nearby salons with ratings and reviews from real customers. It links to the salon's Instagram so that you can see photos of the stylists' work, and sometimes customers leave photos of their finished looks in the reviews, too. It shows the average wait time, so you know before you book if you can get in and out, or if you need to bring a novel, the dictionary, and two days worth of food. I especially love that it shows the average price, too, and if you scroll down the salon services and prices are also listed. Another cool feature is the "Salon Info," so you know what exactly the salon specializes in: weaves, color, braids, natural hair, etc. You can pick your desired service from a drop-down menu before you even start scrolling through the salons. The app will then show you locations that specialize in the service you're seeking.As of now, Swivel only lists salons in New York City, but its expanding to more cities this year! Download it for free: iPhone; Android.
Swivel Beauty

I'm willing to bet my cocoa butter, my last Popeye's wing, and three bottles of Hennessy that more black women than not have struggled with finding the perfect stylist. Our hair is exceptionally special and delicate, and it comes in a range of textures and lengths. Finding a professional stylist who knows what they're doing, can get you out of the chair in time for your funeral, AND who has prices that won't force you to choose between rent and beauty is a struggle. And this is why the Swivel app is heaven-sent for black women.

The Swivel app "meets all your haircare needs" with its salon locator feature. The app lists nearby salons with ratings and reviews from real customers. It links to the salon's Instagram so that you can see photos of the stylists' work, and sometimes customers leave photos of their finished looks in the reviews, too. It shows the average wait time, so you know before you book if you can get in and out, or if you need to bring a novel, the dictionary, and two days worth of food. I especially love that it shows the average price, too, and if you scroll down the salon services and prices are also listed. Another cool feature is the "Salon Info," so you know what exactly the salon specializes in: weaves, color, braids, natural hair, etc. You can pick your desired service from a drop-down menu before you even start scrolling through the salons. The app will then show you locations that specialize in the service you're seeking.

As of now, Swivel only lists salons in New York City, but its expanding to more cities this year!

Download it for free: iPhone; Android.

9. So my non-swimming ass is in LOVE with literally every swimsuit by Red Star Collection.

Y'all, I'm straight up in LOVE with Red Star Collection! As soon as Idris quits playing and marries me, I'm gonna buy every single piece with our joint account. The brand makes quality swimwear in the most stunning prints! Here I'm wearing the Magenta High Waist DashiKini Metallic Leatherette on a beach shore in Cuba.I love the brand for a bunch of reasons, but primarily because the designs are so gorgeous, the fit is AMAZING, and the quality is impeccable. The one I'm wearing was made with "magenta colored Dashiki fabric," and it has faux leather metallic straps and bands. It's those little details in a all of their swimsuits that really give them that extra pinch of fabulousness. Also, my suit fit so perfectly, and they're all made with black women in mind so there's a decent range of sizes (xs to 2x) that complement our bodies. This was a real perk for me as a former bra-stuffing middle schooler. It's a little challenging sometimes trying to find a bikini top that'll hold my barely there boobs without a bunch of gaping space, but this was nice and snug. You can also order different size tops and bottoms, too! And then the overall quality is just bomb. The fabric feels good, there aren't any stitches popping out of place, and the metallic bands don't do that weird crack and peel thing after you wash the suit. Get it here for $179, and check out their other swimwear, too.
Essence Gant

Y'all, I'm straight up in LOVE with Red Star Collection! As soon as Idris quits playing and marries me, I'm gonna buy every single piece with our joint account. The brand makes quality swimwear in the most stunning prints! Here I'm wearing the Magenta High Waist DashiKini Metallic Leatherette on a beach shore in Cuba.

I love the brand for a bunch of reasons, but primarily because the designs are so gorgeous, the fit is AMAZING, and the quality is impeccable. The one I'm wearing was made with "magenta colored Dashiki fabric," and it has faux leather metallic straps and bands. It's those little details in a all of their swimsuits that really give them that extra pinch of fabulousness. Also, my suit fit so perfectly, and they're all made with black women in mind so there's a decent range of sizes (xs to 2x) that complement our bodies. This was a real perk for me as a former bra-stuffing middle schooler. It's a little challenging sometimes trying to find a bikini top that'll hold my barely there boobs without a bunch of gaping space, but this was nice and snug. You can also order different size tops and bottoms, too! And then the overall quality is just bomb. The fabric feels good, there aren't any stitches popping out of place, and the metallic bands don't do that weird crack and peel thing after you wash the suit.

Get it here for $179, and check out their other swimwear, too.

KEEP SNATCHIN' EDGES, AND LET ME KNOW IN THE COMMENTS BELOW ABOUT SOME OF YOUR FAVE BRANDS!

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