Black Owned Brands & Bands inc. Rock, Hip-hop, Alternative Apparel & Cruelty-free beauty

🖤 Black Rock/Metal Playlist by Nova Twins

🖤 I personally recommend the whole back-catalogue of Skunk Anansie

🖤 2020 – 2021 Black Rap and Hiphop Playlist by Red Music

🖤 General Black Owned Business Directory

🖤 Cruelty-free, Vegan Beauty and Lifestyle List by Vegan Beauty

🖤 Cruelty-free Beauty and Lifestyle List by Logical Harmony

🖤 Hair and wellness family owned brand. Cruelty-free and vegan,

🖤 Alternative Style and Makeup

  • Glam Goth Beauty
  • We Are Unapologetic
  • Gothic Lamb
  • Coloured Raine Cosmetics
  • Jada Le Bour
  • Pocky’s Shoppe
  • Hooked On Ariel
  • Via Shea
  • A Whole New Witch
  • 6t9
  • Candles With Purpose

🖤 Kawaii and Alternative Styles

(compiled by @foxxtailz on Instagram)

  • Otaq Apparel
  • Polka dot Cute Shop
  • Magical Boys Club
  • Dragon Dandy
  • Teal Teacup
  • Moshi Melon
  • Plushii Kawaii
  • Hard Decora
  • I Puke Kawaii

(compiled by @yasminesumman on Instagram)

  • That’s So Kitschy
  • Default Club
  • Charmin Darlin
  • Hissyfit Clothing
  • Maurio Kart (death metal shirts especially)
  • House Of Bats

Happy shopping and listening!

🖤✨Chrissie✨🖤

Your Fave LIFESTYLE Photo’s from the Last 6 Months

I post a selection of photo’s from this blog onto my Instagram and share a few general images everyday. Come follow me if you don’t already @vamp_it_up_mcr

I’ve gone through which photos got the most likes (on Insta) and divided them up into four categories, Lifestyle, Style, Food and er, Me!

Lifestyle

(Clockwise)

Gap Between Buildings When you walk down Whitworth Street heading to Oxford Road, you cross over a tiny bridge without realising and that’s the view of the canal and swanky apartments to your left.

Baby Jay I’ve only ever seen a Jay twice before so this little’un sitting right outside the window was lovely surprise.

Sorting my makeup and storage I chucked out anything old or crap and arranged everything here into one bag and base coverage and tools/brushes into a wicker basic. I indulged my left over OCD traits and lined up everything colourful for this photo; so satisfying!

Pins I have so many pins I have to rotate them on bags and coats. I need to make space on my pin board to display them all properly.

Skincare Routine After setting myself he challenge to get healthier skin in one month, I narrowed down my products to these and found a consistent routine and it worked!

Street Art This is a very old photo of the side of a block at the start of The Northern Quarter. The beautiful art (subject now replaces by Mcr bees) is by Faunagraphic who’s responsible for all of the nature inspired, pastel or brushstroke effect street-art in town. Check out that pretty fire-escape too.

Narwhals Narwhals Swimming In The Ocean (the pre-curser to the baby shark song) My Bloke got me these slippers last Xmas.

Bench In Our Tiny Backyard All my Dads work. I offer to help with our yard but he always refuses as he loves doing it so much. He’s like me, if he gets an idea in his mind, he knows exactly how he wants it. I’m not arguing as it comes out looking lovely every time ^_^

(Centre)

Sustainable (what used to be referred to as Eco) Purchases I got everything here from an online shop called Ecologue. Metal flask, really light but efficient; Bamboo toothbrush, the most comfortable one I’ve ever used and biodegradable; Cleansing pads, also made from bamboo and machine washable!

As always I’d love to hear your thoughts…

🖤✨Chrissie✨🖤

Spring Cleaning My Makeup & Storage

Before doing this I did have a great makeup bag but my makeup was just randomly squashed into it, the kind of squashed where you open it and it all falls out.

I had no idea just how much makeup I actually had and what it was. Loads of eye makeup, yet no mascara!?

Keeping

Below is everything I’ve saved and wow, there are some gorgeous colours in there that I’d totally forgotten about.

Chucking

Below is everything I’ve chucked as it was either too old, too messy or the formulation never worked for me.

Storing

I wiped down my bag inside and out and moved the zip pocket from the middle, over to one side. Now it holds up my pallets and contains my eye and lip liners. I put my lippies in the gathered pockets and my eyeshadows and lipgloss in the main compartment. Now I can finally see everything!

I’ve decided I have enough makeup (eyeshadow & liners basically) to wear the ‘fancy’ stuff every time I go out, anywhere. Lots of cheerful colour – yay!

Any suggestions for a cruelty free mascara?

🖤✨Chrissie✨🖤

Limited Edition Barry M Wildlife Eyeshadow Pallets

Barry M have collaborated with the David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation and artist Emily Lamb to create three limited edition, vegan Wildlife pallets (£7.99). The special thing is that 20% of the net profits go straight to the specific animal on the pallet you have chosen. The tiger pallet has neutral and very warm tones but I’ve always loved pangolins and rhinos so I chose those two. They happen to really compliment each other too.

The Pallets

The Pangolin is the brightest little pallet that I’ve ever seen!

The Rhino is much more neutral but shimmery.

The Pallets

These prove that pallets made out of cardboard can still be sturdy and durable. I love how light and transportable these are and the small but functional mirror is a great touch.

The shadows

The immediate colour pay off isn’t quite as much as I was expecting from such velvety soft shadows and vibrant colours but to be fair, they are very solidly pressed in the pan. They do glide on and are very easy to build to get the depth of colour you want.

The pigment doesn’t shift easily so they aren’t the easiest shadows to blend but because I have oily eyelids and hooded eyes I prefer that they stick around.

The matts have great depth and even the neutral tones show up against my warm skin tone. The shimmers are beautiful with ‘Powerful’ in the Rhino pallet being an actual pan of glitter!

Applications

Ideally I would use the shimmers for my lid, inner corners and under the highest part of my brow. I’ll use the matts in a rounded shape above my lid and outer corners. It would look stunning with just two colours applied all around the eye, like teal and bronze or purple and pink, which is what I’ll do most often.

🖤✨Chrissie✨🖤

Monthly Life Update – February

I’ve broken my record for often being ten minutes late by being ten days late as I thought I’d already posted this. Here’s everything I’ve been doing and reviewing!

Sorry I’m a bit grainy. Manchester doesn’t get much daylight in February.

Lifestyle

I created a list post called Self Imposed Ban on Buying and wrote down everything I have a lot of, the reason why I have a lot of it and why I shouldn’t buy any more of it. It’s a lot easier to realise what’s going on and to harden your resolve when you can see it in black and white.

I reposted Spring Cleaning My Beauty Cupboard from last year because I’ve done so well with keeping it ordered and thinking thoroughly about my purchases, that I’ve not needed to do it again this year.

Food and Dinning Out

Me and the Bloke have decided we are going to take it in turns to choose where we want to eat out for the evening (and who pays), at least once a month. The bloke chose Sai Spice an Indian place in Chorlton.

We ordered the veggie starter platter to share and four smaller curries. One spinach and dumpling based, one chickpea dahl, a nutty yoghurt based one and a spicy but not too hot Kolhapuri. Everything tasted amazing! It’s a brightly lit, affordable, family style place and I think Lilly’s would have some competition if they were closer to each other. Couldn’t resist grabbing a kulfi to go.

Here’s my review of Vertigo, the plant based restaurant at First Street, Manchester, which was my choice. I’d been wanting to go for a while but waited until I heard some good reviews as I’m not exactly rolling in cash.

I bought some ‘facon’ in the form of Coconut Bacon by Pimp my Salad, which I’m throwing on pretty much everything or just eating straight from the jar.

We made English Gluten Free Pancakes for pancake day or Shrove Tuesday as they call it.

I sampled one of Clive’s Tarts which I realised tasted lovely chilled or heated up. I was surprised it was both dairy and gluten free.

I’ve finally discover how wonderful Tika is! Tika panner, Tika broccoli (Yeah, I wasn’t expecting to come across that one either) and tika mock chicken. I reviewed two very different Tika Masala Veggie Readymeals, one from Tesco and one from Asda.

Skincare and Makeup

On my never ending quest to find a base that makes me look all glowy and healthy, rather than matte and a bit sallow, I bought Pixi Beauty Balm. Did it do the trick? You’ll have to click!

I’m trying to reduce my carbon footprint bit by bit, so I was pleased to find Zao essence of nature, a natural beauty brand that uses refillable bamboo packaging. I bought the essentials: Concealer and Mascara.

Thank you lovely people, for catching up with me.

🖤✨Chrissie✨🖤

Spring Cleaning my Beauty Cupboard

*First posted 1 year ago*

I’ve decided to do something positive and have a product Spring clean. Sorting through your skincare and makeup stash was one of my tips in my post 6 Simple Beauty Tips Which Make a Big Difference what a good day to follow my own advice, ha!

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This was all of the skincare products I owned and as you can see they are pretty much all over the place, with face, body and hair, old stuff and new stuff all mixed up. After going through everything this is what I learned…

  1. I had so much oil! I could easily just use the same one for my hair and body and a lighter one for my face.
  2. Out of all of those products I only had one face moisturiser.
  3. I found products that had changed consistency or were nearly empty and all of those were expired.
  4. I still had tanning oil from my twenties! o_O
  5. I buy face masks because they are on offer in pound shops and NEVER use them.
  6. I thought I needed to stock up on miceller water and cooling eye gel as I was running low but then realised I’d originally bought them in two’s to save on postage.
  7. I had a stupid amount of body butter.
  8. I’ve rediscovered cruelty free beauty brands I’d totally forgotten about!
  9. I had bits and bobs from various razors and waxing kits that I stopped using ages ago.

I’ve reduced the above to a single crate and the cute wicker basket. The rest is either in the recycling, the bin or my dressing table so I actually remember to use it daily.

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Here is all of my makeup, apart from what I’ve thrown out and repeats of the same thing and yeah, it’s still a lot!

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Here’s what I’ve thrown out.

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A slightly smaller pile, heehee.

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Here’s my main big-ass makeup case, my daily makeup case and my travel/wash bag with miniatures and samples in. Here’s what I’ve learned…

  1. Even though I treat my makeup fairly well, there were still spillages and products that felt sticky – eeew.
  2. If it’s really broken, through the damn thing away! You are not Stig Of The Dump or a Womble.
  3. If it doesn’t suit your skin tone or texture and it can’t easily be mixed with something else, then throw it away or swap it/give it to someone.
  4. There are lots of reasons why buying two of the same thing can be a good idea but hoarding the same type of product, or buying several before you’ve even tried if the product works for you is not a good idea.
  5. How many golden-brown eyeshadows and copper-brown toned lip products can one person reasonably own!? Five eyeshadows and eight lip products it would seem ;0)
  6. I still have products I bought before I went totally cruelty free. That was TEN years ago!

As you can see, I still have the big makeup bag but now my little ‘everyday makeup bag’ includes the best of my base, mascara, tools, contouring kit (I missed out the wonderful Pixi contour kit in the first photo) and three eyeshadows and eyelinners that I rotate on a monthly basis. This means that everything is easy to keep track of/clean/sharpened, quickly to hand, and I don’t forget to use all of the lovely colours I own.

I hope this helps with your declutter! Let me know if it has or if you also do some of the bad habits I’ve mentioned.

🖤✨Chrissie✨🖤

 

 

 

 

Pixi by Petra Beauty Balm & H2O Skindrink Mini

About eight years ago I tried a lot of the BB and CC creams that came onto the market, with varying success. Then I got rather obsessed with finding the right radiance boosting foundation, with absolutely no success. So I thought I’d give Pixi Beauty Balm (High Coverage Foundation) £22 in Nude a try, as it looked like it might combine both.

Active Ingredients

  • Adenosine restores & smoothes
  • Ceramide NP provides time-release moisture
  • Chamomile calms & soothes
  • Hyalorunic Acid

Before I applied this I looked so fatigued and I’d not been taking care of my skin for several days (as a result of illness, my diet and my lifestyle choices) so it looked dull, greasy and blotchy with big grooves at the side of my eye bags.

Ding! Ding! Ding! We have a winner!

The first time I applied the Beauty Balm to unprimed skin it glided on so easily, matching my skin tone perfectly (darker than nude in my opinion) and it made my skin look flawless!

The second time I applied the H2O Skindrink and OMG did I look glowy and healthy!

It wore really well and evenly and my skin felt hydrated through the entire day.

After using this duo I now realise there is skincare and makeup and then there’s CAMOUFLAGE and MAGIC!

Disclaimer: No way in hell am I showing you the ‘before’ photo (recall the worst mug shot you ever saw and you’re nearly there). I couldn’t get an ‘after’ shot either as there’s hardly any natural light in my house in the afternoons. I tried using my very bright SAD light but that just bleached out my features (and any contrast) like those awful ‘youth boosting’ skincare adverts that are so prevalent now.

Anyway, below is an approximation…

Before

After

Seriously though….

Rating 5/5 💃🏽💃🏽💃🏽💃🏽💃🏽

I am gutted that I can’t buy a full sized Skindrink H2O because – and I rarely say this – I need this in my life…and on my face.

🖤✨Chrissie✨🖤

Zao Essence of Nature vegan refillable Volume & Sheathing Mascara and Concealer

I came across both of these on the Peace With The Wild website but Zao do have their own website. Both of these products are cruelty free, organic, vegan and refillable!

I’m surprised these are packaged in little bamboo bags as it seems like unnecessary extra packaging. I do love the bamboo cases and that they’re refillable though.

Concealer £18.75

I chose the colour ‘Clear Beige’ as it suits ‘medium skin with neutral undertones’ which my skin is in winter. I cant show you a tester on my skin because it matches it so much that you can’t see it. For a stick concealer the texture is pretty creamy but obviously not as blendable as a liquid one. I’m not one of those people that slap on so much under their eyes, that they cover their cheek bones too (hey, each to their own), I just use it sparingly on blemishes and redness.

Organic castor oil 

This oil is emollient and so facilitates softer skin. It is also moisturising, increasing the water content of skin to keep it soft and smooth.

Organic carnauba wax

Secreted by leaves of a palm tree native to Brazil, this wax is a film-forming agent that protects skin via the production of a continuous film; this helps makeup to last for a longer duration.

Organic bamboo macerate

Bamboo macerate is extremely rich in organic silica, required by the body for the production of collagen, the body’s anti-ageing weapon. Our bodies require silica to maintain elasticity of the upper layers of the epidermis.

Volume and Sheathing Mascara £20.75

100% natural ingredients, 40% of which are organic. This Mascara is so gentle on lashes. The sheathing effect makes lashes thicker but also means that it slides off easily when I want to remove it. It doesn’t make my feel lashes dry or like they could easily snap, as they are still flexible.

This brush is absolutely fool proof! It lifts and separates lashes and applies the perfect amount of product.

Organic bamboo hydrosol
Derived from the distillation of bamboo leaves, it purifies combination and acne-prone skin by mattifying it. Moisturizing and soothing, it is also beneficial for dry and sensitive skin. Thanks to its high silica content, it leaves a soft touch to the skin.

Acacia gum
Acacia gum or gum arabic that comes from the resin secreted by the Acacia Senegal tree, is used as an adhesive agent, to improve the hold of Zao Make-Up mascaras.

Organic avocado oil
Obtained from avocado pulp, this oil is healing and calming. It works like a wonder on skin irritations. Softening, protective and very soft, it restores elasticity and provides comfort to the skin and takes care of fragile skin. Regenerating and restructuring, it acts against skin aging.’

I’ve not included a before pic because you can’t really see my lashes as they point forward without mascara, rather than upward.

I’m surprised at how thick and extended my lashes look, even with my hooded eyes. Below, I’m doing surprised-eyes in order to show you the base of my lashes.

I didn’t even know I had this many lashes lol

Rating for both 5/5 🥳

🖤✨Chrissie✨🖤

My Cruelty Free Beauty Awards 2019!

Best Liquid Highlighter – The Body Shop Drops of Glow

This pearlised one is a little too light for me so I should have gotten the more golden option. Still a great product though!

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Runner up Charlotte Tilbury Hollywood Filter. Shite as BB cream or sheer foundation but amazing as a highlighter.

Best Hair Dye – Manic Panic (Pretty Flamingo)

The choice of colours are amazing, the consistency is nice and thick so easy to apply and it’s really conditioning. It can last up to six months if you gently wash your hair every 7 – 14 days or it can be nearly washed out after around 5 washes with stronger shampoo.

Runner up – Nature Tint. Lasts forever but too runny and messy to apply easily.

Best Lipstick/Gloss/Balm – The Body Shop, Colour Crush Lipstick (Luanda Peony)

This glides on easily, has a very subtle and flattering shimmer, huge colour payoff and it moisturises!

Runner up – Charlotte Tilbury Lip Plumping Gloss. Works almost too well!

Best Hair and Body Care Brand – Yaoh! (Coconut and Lime)

Affordable, natural (everything is based around hemp seed oil), it smells heavenly and every product delivers results.

Runner up – Neal’s Yard Remedies. Natural and pampering but too pricey for me.

Best Nail Polish/Care Brand – Ciate (Nail Super Hero)

Affordable, an astounding range of colours, textures and finishes, and nail treatments which actually work.

Runner up – Barry M for very similar reasons.

Best Facial Skincare – The Body Shop (Vitamin C)

This Range is strongly scented of oranges, which I find really refreshing. It’s affordable as a little goes a long way and leaves skin clean, smooth and moisturised immediately and clearer and glowier after around five days.

Runner up – Murad (Age Reform). Incredibly effective and a similar price bracket to TBS these days so this was a tough decision!

Best Everyday Facial Oil – Superdrug own brand

I would describe this as a dry oil as it’s non-greasy and works perfectly under primer and foundation (or at least the one’s I use), or on it’s own for a naturally healthy appearance on any skin type.

Runner up – Weleda. Their facial oils are rich and really nourishing. They all have a very strong (natural) scent and take a while to sink in so best for an overnight treatment.

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I’ve covered all of the products and the brands that I have used in 2019. So if there is a category or product missing it’s because I didn’t need or use a new a one of those. Above are some products which I loved but didn’t quite make the ‘best of’.

Have you tried any of these?

🏅Chrissie🏅

 

Halloween Makeup To Get Creative With

Rather than put together a specific look, I decided to find, what I thought were the most versatile items. This way after Halloween you can subtly incorporate them into an evening look, using as much or as little as you want. Creative and budget friendly!

 

Glow Up – Orly

Cosmic Cowboy Face Jewels – Barry M

Glitter Flip Liquid Lipstick in Iconic – Ciate

18 Hit Wonders Eyeshadow Palette – E.L.F.

I’ve left off any prices and links as it depends on which country you live in or what your fave beauty halls or websites are. My fave UK places (apart from the brands own websites) are Superdrug, TK Maxx (online), Debenhams and Cult Beauty (online).

Happy creating! V- -V