I’ve been eyeballing black-owned makeup brand Uoma Beauty for a while now, but things just didn’t come together. I was in Arizona when the brand was first launching in to Ulta stores, but none of the stores in the Tempe area received the display while I was there, and then I returned to the land of the pale people, and none of our Ultas seem to have received this brand. I was intrigued to try the foundation, which launched with 6 formulations in a total of 51 shades, each one relating to the most comment concerns related to that skintone group. I was skeptical, but if you saw my last Face Friday post (the pink & blue fantasy look, HERE) you know that I loved them!
So why did I finally dive and decide to make the purchase? Because of the Carnival collection!
In addition to their base products, the brand does some gorgeous lipsticks and shadow palettes and they were launching a new limited edition Carnival collection. The collection included one of their 10-pan Black Magic palettes and two glitter encrusted lipsticks (there were also a couple of face products – bronzers I think? – but I wasn’t as interested in those. Be sure to check out their website to see the full collection, linked above!). The campaign was represented by influencers Jackie Aina and Patrick Starr, which kicked off a psuedo-controversy of fake wokeness because the two aren’t from the right zip code or some shit. The brand explained that their intention was to create a collection that celebrated Carnival as it is celebrated all over the world, how it has moved and changed, and not just where it started. Their Instagram has been brimming with gorgeous photography and a ton of great information educating people about various traditions all over the world. Clearly I have no patience for trolls and the colors were intriguing, so I placed an order for the palette and lipsticks, and added in the foundation and concealer for good measure. I’m always a little nervous picking shades online if I haven’t seen them in person, but I ended up being really happy with my shade selections!
The 10-pan Carnival palette is a collection of 5 foil shimmer and 5 mattes. There are a couple of neutral brown mattes to help blend out the colors a bit and build your traditional kind of looks, but the palette is heavy on color, and I love that!
The swatches are done over the Ulta Matte Eyeshadow primer with a finger swatch on the left and a brush swatch on the right. The top photo is the swatches under my studio lighting with no flash; the bottom photo is my same studio lighting with a flash.
L to R: Barranquilla, Mardi Gras, Bahia, Trinidad, Tenerife
Barranquilla is a brick red with coppery foil shimmer. Mardis Gras is a red-toned violet shimmer, but with some blue reflect as well. Bahia is bright yellowy gold shimmer. Trinidad is a mossy green with gold foil shimmer. Tenerife is a medium brown with peachy gold shimmer.
The shimmers are nice, and they work well with either a brush or a finger, and they are that almost flaky sort of texture that would also really come alive and be even more metallic if applied wet. The colors are gorgeous, and very warm-toned. The three in the middle remind me of the traditional Mardi Gras colors, and I love how the gold in the green helps tie it back to the yellow shimmer. A nice collection of foiled shades with good performance.
L to R: Notting Hill, Barbados, Rio, Oruro, Mazatlan
Notting Hill is a gorgeous bright, almost neon, orange matte. The orange is nicely opaque and it’s very bright. I’m impressed with how well it maintains its color without appearing chalky. Barbados is a matte bright yellow, a little chalky, but not bad and it blends out nicely with a brush. Rio is a bright blue-based fuchsia pink, nicely pigmented and very smooth. Oruro is a medium red-toned brown matte, much more opacity with a brush but a pretty color regardless. Mazatlán is a darker, slightly more neutral brown, though definitely still leaning warm.
This color story isn’t entirely up my alley (they also have a green/yellow palette that I’m eyeing pretty hard!) but the colors are lovely, vibrant, and apply very well. They are fully opaque and pigmented, and I think the matte formula and the foiled shimmer formula are equally good.
I also picked up the two lispticks in the collection: Trinidad and Bahia.
L to R: Trinidad, Bahia
The lipsticks have a glitter coating, which I’ve seen before (and is usually just an overspray), but these seem to have the same glitter infused into the formula. They are two gorgeous colors and I love the glitter effect. The pictures I have don’t capture how beautiful these are. The lighting for these swatches is the same as described above, but there is no eye primer as a base, just bare skin.
Trinidad is a gorgeous blue-toned hot pink (the sort of color I lovingly refer to as “hooker pink”) and the glitter has a definite blue shift to it. I tried to take the swatch photos as angles that would capture the flash, but didn’t really succeed. Bahia is a reddish brown nude with gold and green glitter shift. It’s almost an opalescent sort of look, but with gold and green as the strongest colors on display. They are a nice creamy formula and don’t feel chunky on the lips, even with all of the glitter.
Overall, I think the eyeshadows are pretty good, and if you find a color story that you like they aren’t a bad price compared to other mid-range competitors. The lipsticks are cute, but more of a treat/indulgence purchase. I’m impressed with how they infused the glitter throughout; props to them making the effort instead of just putting on a gorgeous overspray that is pretty much gone after one use. The lid is magnetized, which is just delightful. I’m probably not going to go too deep into their lipstick collection, since I tend to prefer liquid lipsticks over traditional tube lipsticks, but they do have a line of matte lipsticks that I want to at least try a shade or two. The products don’t strike me as the kind that will become ride or dies in my kit, but I think they are very high quality, I love the performance, and I’m definitely interested in trying more.
The big winner for me, even though I didn’t technically review it here, was the foundation! It’s buildable, and I had to do two layers to get the full-full coverage (aka mask) that I prefer, but it was so smooth and looked so great on my textured skin! This is one I’m definitely going to keep using, and at least right now I would definitely commit to repurchasing! The concealer was good, but not quite as inspiring as the foundation. I think I need to get a lsightly lighter shade so I get more of a highlight effect and then I’ll be won over, but for now it’s just a solid B.
What I love about makeup is the diversity and the growing representation of people who love and create and explore through makeup artistry. I have zero time for the trolls who wanted to throw shade at this collection, and while I’m not really a big fan of either Jackie or Patrick (I’m not subbed to either of them, though I will occasionally watch a video), I love that this black-owned makeup brand not only picked a gorgeous black woman to front the campaign but also a fat, queer person of color. That layering of identity and experience is much more interesting to me than trying to parse down what area code someone comes from to see if they are “ethnic enough” to be a part of representing beauty. Not to be rude, but those people can get fucked.
Sorry, that was a little salty. I think I need a vacation – Carnival here I come!