After debating on whether or not to go to BeautyCon I made a poll on Instagram and with the majority of my followers saying, “YES!” I decided to buy a ticket. When I first went on the site, it was all sold out! But I decided to check again the next day and to my surprise more tickets were added. So my friend Nneka (@africanjawn) and I didn’t waste any time getting our tickets
When Beautycon comes to town, it inspires a host of other auxiliary events as well. I attended a cocktail hour for HueNoir, a new black owned beauty brand that recently launched in Target. The event took place at the beautiful Gramercy Garden at The Line Hotel.
On to day one of BeautyCon! Entering the convention center was a breeze, the lines moved quickly and I could already hear the DJ playing Afrobeats as we entered the building so I was ready for a good time. Once we entered “Make Up Heaven”, the lines got a lot less breezy so Nneka and I had to decide which makeup brands we really loved and which lines were worth standing in. I felt like Tyra Banks sending girls home on “America’s Next Top Model”!
Our first stop was the Cover Girl booth, where we got to take home their latest mascara and a brow pencil. Then it was off to visit Shea Moisture and CVS. Most brands did gift with purchase or sample sized items. There were several newer brands that are now on my radar, that I discovered thanks to Beautycon including Essence and Joah Cosmetics.
One long line that was worth waiting in was by HourGlass Cosmetics because I had the opportunity to meet Kim Kardashian-West’s make up artist Mario (@MakeupbyMario). I was so nervous! When it was finally my turn to take a picture with him I said, “You’re even prettier in person!” And he so graciously told me that I was gorgeous so basically, no need for a blue check on Instagram, I’ve already been verified!
I thoroughly enjoyed watching Jackie Aina speak during the diversity panel because it’s an ongoing conversation that we need to continue to have in the beauty industry.
I love how Jackie is so vocal about the importance of brands making shades that cater to darker skin tones. She’s open the door for more women of color like myself. But we need to see even more (and even darker) women as the face of brand campaigns.
A great learning lesson that I would share with someone planning to attend Beautycon is the importance of having business cards.
Nneka and I met several brand reps who wanted to keep in touch and our first thought was to connect via Instagram but we were asked for our business cards. (Gasps!) When we got home that evening, we decided to make 4×4 photo cards on Canvas and I went to CVS to have them printed.
We arrived on day two of BeautyCon with a different mission, not to collect swag but to connect with brands that we admire including Black Opal and Too Face. We also met a few attendees who worked for brands such as Outre Hair and Lola’s Shoetique (now known as Miss Lola) and I was able to hand out my new business card! As a result, I had the opportunity to shoot with Outre Hair during New York Fashion Week!
In conclusion, whether you’re a model, makeup artist or beauty vlogger, Beautycon is worth every penny.
From the amazing and informative panels, to the networking opportunities, it was great to be in a room filled with men and women who love makeup just as much as I do. Beautycon 2019, I’ll see you soon!