Makeup By Kim Porter

Be Paparazzi Ready with the February ESSENCE BeautyBox

Be Paparazzi Ready with the February ESSENCE BeautyBox



ESSENCE, the most coveted and respected magazine for women of color (WOC) in both print and online arenas expanded its horizons by entering the subscription box service world. The first ESSENCE debuted in October 2015 with a curated set of deluxe beauty samples perfect for women of color. I was lucky enough to receive the February box for review purposes. I’m excited to share its contents with you.

The February ESSENCE BeautyBox contains products chosen by ESSENCE Beauty editors to ensure the box recipient is ready for the paparazzi at any given moment.

Cover FX Mattifying Primer

Cover FX Mattifying Primer with Anti-Acne Treatment – .16 oz – Value: $5.00

This was my favorite item in the box! I’ve wanted to try this exact primer for a while now. God answered my prayers. My skin can become an oil slick, and using this first definitely helped with that. Breakouts were practically non-existent due to the Salicylic acid. If you haven’t yet, check out this primer.

Dark and Lovely Au Naturale – Soak It Up Oil Cocktail

Dark and Lovely Au Naturale Soak It Up Oil Cocktail – 4.1oz – Value: $9.99

Featuring Coconut and Moringa Oils, this cocktail is said to easily absorb into the hair, preventing dryness.  First, I love the scent of this oil. It’s very tropical, and lingers a bit. I typically do not use oils on my hair due to my hair being fine, and oils tend to weigh it down, but with this product I didn’t have that issue.

Be Paparazzi Ready with the February ESSENCE BeautyBox_IMAN Luxury Lip Shimmer

Iman Cosmetics Luxury Lip Shimmer ‘Muse’ – Sample Size – Value: $1.00

Subscribers may have received a lipstick or lipgloss from Iman’s brand.  My February ESSENCE BeautyBox contained the Iman Luxury Lip Shimmer in a beautiful milky, pinky nude shade called ‘Muse’. Even though it is a shimmer gloss, the shimmer is barely there, which I love. I’m in my early 30’s and the last thing I want is shimmer in my makeup. This shade is perfect for me.

Colgate Optic White

Colgate Optic White Platinum Express White Toothpaste in Fresh Mint – .075 oz – Value: $1.00

This toothpaste arrived just in time because I took it with me on our most recent trip to Florida. There’s a lot of bang in that little tube. My teeth and breath felt clean. I’d definitely purchase a full-size tube.

Kiss Lashes

Kiss Looks So Natural Lashes in Flirty KFL02 – Value: $3.99

I love wearing lashes on special occasions. Otherwise, you can find me just applying them on other people. These are nice; I’ve actually used a similar pair, if not the exact pair (I go through so many). They give a natural look without being too overwhelming.

Broadway Strip Lash Adhesive with Aloe

Broadway Eyes Strip Lash Adhesive with Aloe in Clear DGLG02 – 3g – Value: $1.99

You can’t have eyelashes without an adhesive right? This box included lash glue by Broadway Eyes. I’ve used this brand before and didn’t have a good reaction; it burned! Unfortunately, I didn’t get to try it. I just wasn’t brave enough. If you use this lash glue please let me know how you like it. This glue is also black; I prefer my glue to dry clear.

Miss Jessie's Coily Custard


Miss Jessie’s Coily Custard – 1 oz – Value: $1.60

My hair is natural, but I haven’t yet worn it natural… well, curly or in a twist out. I haven’t yet tried this product, but may eventually use it on my daughter. Stay tuned for updates.

Dark and Lovely Au Naturale – Soak It Up Oil Cocktail

Overall, I’m happy with what the February contained. So far my favorite items include: Dark and Lovely Au Naturale Soak It Up Oil Cocktail, Colgate Optic White Platinum Express White Toothpaste in Fresh Mint, Cover FX Mattifying Primer with Anti-Acne Treatment, and the Iman Luxury Lip Shimmer. For $15, the subscriber received at least $25 worth of products, which sounds like a win to me.

Sign up for your ESSENCE BeautyBox Subscription . The monthly price for the Essence Beauty box is $15, however you can sign up for 6 months for $90 or a year for $165.

Will you be trying the new ESSENCE BeautyBox? Share your thoughts below!

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First Impressions: Lancôme Teinte Idole Ultra 24H

First Impressions: Lancôme Teinte Idole Ultra 24H


Do you know the feeling you get when not one, but two of your favorite foundations are on its last leg? That feeling of desperation, working diligently to make each drop count – that was me just a few days ago. My husband helped to fix my problem by picking up for me the Lancôme Teinte Idole Ultra 24H.

Lancôme Teinte Idole Ultra 24H is the brand’s first ultra-longwear foundation. Lancôme says:

“With its new EternalSoft technology, Teint Idole Ultra 24H defeats all challenges. Complexion stays perfectly flawless and unified. Never cakey.”

The Lancôme Teinte Idole Ultra 24H is a moderate to full-coverage foundation with a matte finish. On me, it seems more of a velvety matte texture; it’s not so matte where my skin doesn’t look like skin.

The Lancôme Teinte Idole Ultra 24H include is not your ordinary foundation. You know how your skin can sometimes feel tight when using a matte foundation? You won’t experience that when using the Teinte Idole thanks to the Eternalsoft Polymer. You also don’t have to worry about your color changing throughout the day due to oxidation or what have you since the Teinte Idole contains specially coated NAI pigments that help maintain consistent pH levels with your skin. Lastly, if you’re an oily girl like me, you will love that it contains perlite and silica, two of the most effective oil-absorbing ingredients.

The Lancôme Teinte Idole Ultra 24H comes in five intensity levels, and four colors (Ivoire for porcelain skin, Buff for light skin, Bisque for medium skin, and Suede for darker brown complexions) in neutral (N), Cool (C), and warm (w) tones. I wasn’t able to first test the foundations in-person before having my husband pick them up for me, but he was able to buy for me the following shades:

  • 460 Suede (W)
  • 470 Suede (C)
  • 500 Suede (W)

After swatching and testing out all three of the foundations, I found that 460 Suede (W) was the perfect match for the summer, but I would need to purchase 450 Suede (N) for the cooler months when my skin starts to lose its tan.

Once the summer hits, the Lancôme Teinte Idole Ultra 24H will become my go-to foundation. It applies easily, it feels light on the skin, and makes my skin look like my skin but better. My skin doesn’t look like an oil-slick at the end of the day when using this foundation. I also love that even though it is a matte formula, it doesn’t give off the cake face look.

The Lancôme Teinte Idole Ultra 24H Makeup is oil-free, fragrance-free, and non-comedogenic, and has SPF 15. It comes in 28 shades, with 10 of them specifically for brown skin, which is a great thing for other brown girls like me. The Teinte Idole  retails for $47, and is worth every single penny. Check here for the foundation chart to see which shade is best for you.

Have you tried Lancôme Teinte Idole Ultra 24H foundation?

Two winners Two $300 Gift Cards! 

Hi, friends! I’ve teamed up with a group of awesome bloggers to bring you a FABULOUS giveaway! This giveaway is INTERNATIONAL! It will have TWO winners, and the winner will get a $300 gift card to either Sephora or Target (Winner’s Choice). All you need to do is enter below for a chance to win!



How I Learned How to Make Argan Oil at Assaisse Ouzeka Women’s Cooperative in Essaouira

When I booked my trip to Morocco, I immediately began doing research to book excursions. One of the places that was at the top of my list to visit was Essaouira. Why was it Essaouira? Because that’s where the magic grows. If you don’t know what magic I’m talking about, it’s the Argan tree where we get the infamous argan oil or as some may call it, Moroccan oil.

7 Benefits of Argan Oil or Moroccan Oil:

  1. Skin moisturizer- great for hydrating and softening skin
  2. Hair conditioner- softer and silkier hair
  3. Anti-aging properties- to slow down the process of visible aging lines
  4. Acne Treatment- helps treat and prevent acne
  5. Treatment for feet, hands, and nails- softens and conditions feet, hands, and cuticles.
  6. Prevent stretch marks during pregnancy
  7. Lip moisturizer- great to prevent chapped lips

You can find argan oil pretty much anywhere in Morocco, but I wanted to visit one of the women’s cooperative to learn about the different types of oils. On our way to the coast of Essaouira, and after we stopped to see the goats in the tree we made our way to Assaisse Ouzeka (Argane Tichka) women’s cooperative.

Before we get to Assaisse Ouzeka I have to tell you about the goats in the argan trees. I’ve heard about these particular goats and I’ve seen pictures online, but it was a site to see in person. People kept asking me why the goats were in the tree and it is to eat the argan fruit. When goats eat the argan fruit and passes through them, people would collect the feces of the poop to get the argan fruit seed to make argan oil.



Yes you read that correctly….people would take goat poop to get the seed to make argan oil. Although that is not as common of a practice today, at Assaisse Ouzeka, I learned more about argan oil, its uses and how it is made.

Upon entering we saw three women hard at work. It was like an assembly line for creating the different argan products. Here are the steps:

1. Remove the seed from the ripe fruit


2. Break seed to get the kernel. The kernel is then roasted and then cooled.




3. Grind the cooled kernel using a hand mill.



4. The product from the hand mill creates a paste and the oil is extracted from the paste.


This is the same process for the cosmetic oil, but skip the roasting step. The roasting helps bring out the nutty flavor in the argan cooking oil.

This was extremely hard work. After a few churns my arm was killing me!
This was extremely hard work. After a few churns my arm was killing me!

We all know that argan oil and products with argan oil is extremely expensive. I must say after seeing how hard those women work it is worth every penny. This oil is not manufactured in some large factory. You only see a group of women working with their bare hands to help produce a product that we love.

At the cooperative we got test all types of argan products. We had argan oil honey, argan nut butter, and pure argan oil with bread. We also tested cosmetic products like face creams, scented argan oil, and argan masks. They guides were extremely helpful (of course they wanted us to buy things) and knowledgeable about the production and benefits of the products.

There was a plethora of products and options. I purchased cosmetic argan oil, lavender scent cosmetic argan oil, night cream with argan oil for wrinkles (you have to prevent them before they show up), and an argan oil clay mask.


Visiting Assaisse Ouzeka was definitely one of the highlights from my trip. If you are ever in Morocco, visit Essaouira and Assaisse Ouzeka. You won’t be disappointed.