Inside France’s black|Up Cosmetic Brand

As a makeup lover who is always researching new and existing brands — especially for ethnic consumers — it was pleasant surprise to find the French makeup brand black|Up, known for their vibrant colours, quality foundation and bespoke skincare range. It’s also quite comforting to know that there are more makeup brands that cater towards brown skin in the U.K. and rest of Europe, where it can be challenging to find makeupthat truly suits our varied complexions and skincare needs. I spoke with black|Up’s representative Audrey N’Gadi to get the scoop on line’s past, present and future …

Parlour: Who founded black|Up?

Audrey N’Gadi: black|Up was created in Paris in 1999 by a young makeup artist from the Ivory Coast. After studying makeup at Christian Chauveau makeup school in Paris, he thought his expertise was strong enough to work on women of colour. He soon realized that makeup products were not adapted to black and mixed skins and there was a lack of products for these specific beauties. So he started to mix textures, formulas and pigments to create a dedicated makeup line specially designed for black and mixed skins.

Who can use black|Up?

Our target is black and mixed women aged from 25 to 35 years old who search for a brand with expertise and products specifically tailored to match their needs. We also target every makeup addict who can’t resist great colours and desire highly pigmented beauty products.

Will you open more stores or extend your product range?

Today our goal is to continue to develop products perfectly adapted to women of various colours and needs, as well as create never seen before colours and amazing textures so that all the makeup addicts of this world can enjoy the black|Up makeup expertise.

In 2012, we’ll be focusing on our popular foundation line. We already have up to 13 shades in each range when mainstream brands are adding three to six ethnic shades to their regular assortment, so we are continually developing this category. And talking of face/skin; we also plan to extend our skincare range to offer a global beauty program which allows treating the skin day and night.

Globally, we’re developing our brand not only in France, but also in the U.K., South Africa, Holland and Reunion Island. We are also planning to open new stores in countries in Africa, the Caribbean and soon the USA…where we have already opened an on-line shop: black|Up.

What should we look forward to this autumn/winter?

We have some great surprises for autumn/winter, with exclusive textures and delightful colours. We will launch a limited edition Christmas Palette including: two blushers, two eyeshadows and two lipglosses, offering many options in terms of makeup looks. We will add 10 new lipshines to our collection with a non-sticky and comfortable texture, sparkling finish and deep radiance. This new line will include great and unseen colours such as a pearly black, mocha and gold. In addition, we will launch 8 new eyeshadows inspired by precious metals such as copper, gold, platinum … in both warm and cold shades. Their new texture which is nor a powder nor a cream acts like a smooth, lasting colour film. Each shade is intensified with highly concentrated pure pigments for magnetic eyes and a stunning makeup finish. We are also preparing a launch on a new segment for the end of this year.

What makes your skincare line different from others?

Because when we’re creating a new product we always ask ourselves one question: Does this product fit our consumer features and needs?

Find out more about black|Up here

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