From the moment I could pull myself up and grab a lipstick from my mum’s dressing table, I have always loved beauty. In particular, make-up and colour. Like a rainbow, a red lipstick, pink blusher and copper eyeshadow made my heart beat a little quicker and made me smile.
I remember the first lipstick I ever bought, the way people remember their first kiss or their first car. I had saved up all my pocket money and marched myself over to Miss Selfridge. It was 1992, I was 14 and The Addams Family had been a huge hit the year before. As a result, everything had gone a bit goth. The colour was called Morticia, a deep burnt aubergine. It was love at first sight. The colour popped on my dark brown skin and I felt like a woman. That’s when my love affair with make-up began and I spent my teens sulking around the MAC and Shu Uemura counters in Harvey Nichols and the NARS counter in Space NK. I lived off the free samples I could blag and life was sweet and colourful.
Growing up, make-up was my playground, but often it was also my prison, as many ranges didn't cater to my skintone. Foundations, eyeshadows and blushers weren't pigmented enough to show up on my skin. My friends could walk up to any counter in a department store and pick what they wanted. Instead, I would be told to go to the back of the beauty hall where the Fashion Fair counter was, which was especially designed for darker skintones. It was a very isolating experience, as I had so little choice..... [READ MORE]