The Lowdown on ipsy Gen Beauty

This past weekend I decided to attend ipsy Gen Beauty in San Francisco. As a marketing professional, I have attended countless conferences, but I have never attended a beauty conference before. Since this conference was literally in my backyard (plus their targeted Facebook ads kept tempting me with a nice $75 price tag), I decided to attend Generation Beauty.

I have divided this blog post into useful headers so you can skip to what you want to know about (We all know you want to read about the goodies ūüėČ

Beauty Swag

The goody bag was well worth the ticket price. Expect to receive about $200 worth of beauty products. I will say that based on other reviews online about Ipsy Gen goody bags, I was expecting a lot of discarded shades I would never use. However, I was pleasantly surprised to see that a lot of brands put in the effort to share full-sized or quality sample sized products.

Some standouts: MAC Cosmetics gave you a choice of five different shades of lipstick when you visited their booth. It was a full-sized lipstick. In the actual goody bag, they gave you a greige colored lip in their Retro Matte lip collection.

Soo Ae deserves a shoutout for giving me enough masks to survive an apocalypse‚Äč. They gave about 15 sheet masks in the goody bag PLUS two sheet masks when you visited their booth. While attendees were shivering in the cold waiting for their favorite beauty influencers, Sooae was running around making us smile by giving us even MORE sheet masks. I have more than enough to get sheet faced, thank you very much.

Luxie, which is a Bay Area beauty company gave each attendee a brush cleaner that looked like a plastic loofah. They make vegan-friendly‚Äč beauty brushes. If you visited their booth, they gave you a choice of about 4-5 brushes to pick from. I really enjoyed speaking with the people at the Luxie booth that is for sure. Speaking of brushes, Moda Brushes also gave each attendee a brush.

Beauty Influencer Line Up

Ipsy Gen SF had a really stellar line up of beauty influencers. Here is what sucked: waiting in line for hours while in the cold. If you wanted to meet any of the influencers, Ipsy Gen forced you outside to wait. They had security guards who practically manhandled‚Äč you and as you waited, they would ignore anyone who would cut the line. When I waited to see Tamanna Roashan aka Dress Your Face, literally a group of SEVEN girls cut people in front of me. THIS part of the conference was POORLY handled.

Once you got to meet the influencer you wanted to see, you were literally shoved in front of a ring light tripod with an inexperienced teenager taking your picture. PLEASE review your photo before you leave because when I met Tamanna, the person taking the picture had taken unflattering pictures of BOTH of us with our eyes closed. I don’t even know how anyone can take a bad picture of Tamanna. Tamanna was nice enough to retake a selfie with me which came out much better. So if you want that flattering photo, please CHECK. You don’t want to waste all that time to get a bad photo.

I got to meet Jackie Aina (who is very supportive of Muslim bloggers and Muslim brands). She was the NICEST human being and took the moment to appreciate all of her fans who waited for her. Her fanbase was also the NICEST. We all sat and chatted as old friends while we waited to meet her. So now, I have some local Bay Area fam. Thank you Jackie!

Beauty Schedule

The programming for this conference was just awful. It was bare bones and really wasn’t as engaging as it could be. The one STAND OUT for this was that all of the panels were hosted by Daniel Musto who managed to crack jokes, stay empathetic and was always engaged. He moderated a panel I wasn’t even planning on attending about Beauty by You. The panel was made up of regular ipsy subscribers who were getting makeovers. But they each had a story that would make you want to cry or be inspired. My biggest lesson is that the attendees of Ipsy wowed me more than anything else.

I would have liked to see more makeup how-tos, more brand people to talk to, and panels on the latest makeup trends. Even break out sessions on brand building, how to edit photos, or even how to write a pitch would have been nice. A lot of the attendees are passionate makeup lovers who blog too.

Also, don’t cheap out on chargers at the charging stations Ipsy! I am lucky I brought my own charger because I would have been waiting for my phone to charge for hours.

The Haves and Have Nots

I have been to conferences that are blogger-centric. But Ipsy Gen SF was by far one where you literally feel like a peasant. If you are a “creator,” you get to go upstairs to a lounge where they serve food that most of the creators don’t eat, serve watermelon water, and other fun perks. They literally are on a balcony where they look “down” on everyone else before their meet and greet OR panel starts. Their swag bag is insanely upgraded with FULL-SIZE everything.

My friend was invited to the lounge and left her bags, and when I tried to go with her, the security guard almost tackled me! It’s not that serious, I won’t try to sneak in for your snacks (mainly because I had packed my own, I am a mom). It literally makes you feel like a high school outcast where the mean girls say “you can’t sit with us.”


Here are some tips to have a great experience.

Pack a phone charger
THIS is the most important tip. You don’t want to run out of battery juice before meeting your favorite blogger. Or before you need to order an Uber to get back to your hotel room or home. Pack a charger.

Pack Poo-pourri.
As beautiful as the attendees are, some left real stinkers in the loo. I was so glad I packed this and Clorox wipes.

Pack Snacks
I also packed snacks and water. You are going to be running around booths ALL day. The food trucks are outside the venue where it is cold since you are on the pier near water. Just pack your own snacks.

Leave Behind the Swag Bag on Day 2
That swag bag is like a small baby. You don’t want to be carrying around that baby for too long.

Be Nice

As much as I wanted to call out those line cutters, I just kept it to myself because I am at a MAKEUP conference. It is not that serious. Say thank you to all those people working the booths too. Saying please and having manners always works out best. Even when the security guard was about to tackle me, I was nice and didn’t make a fuss. It’s cool. Just be cool.

If you love makeup, I recommend going to Ipsy Gen SF at least once. However, I think I may just do Beauty Con LA next year. Have you gone to either events before? What do you think?

Hijabi Beauty: Best Foundations For Women of Color

Foundation swatches

Picking a foundation can be tricky, but Hijabilife can help!

We all dream of finding the One. The One makeup base that will take away our worry lines, erase our dark spots, and help us glow with happiness. Much like finding the One we ultimately marry, finding the One foundation you love takes time (and trial and error at times). No matter where you are from, if you are a woman, you probably dream of having smooth, flawless looking skin. It is a standard of beauty that transcends cultures, religions, and even time. If you look at descriptions of beauties from the past, there is always some mention of smooth beautiful skin that glows. Which is exactly why cosmetic companies make a fortune by selling us the promise of radiant skin in a bottle or jar.

One of the challenges that women of color face is that most foundation colors are not exactly suited for them. Women of color will find that some foundations end up looking ashy or muddy. It really is a struggle to find the right foundation for women of color. Here are some tips and tricks that I have for you so that you can get right match for you.

Since it is so hard to find the perfect color match, a lot of women of color focus so much on the color, that they neglect to think about their coverage needs. Do you need a sheer coverage formula? Do you need a heavier coverage? Are you an active person who has a lot of shine? Are you an older woman who wants to bring back some radiance? Personally, I tend to have oily skin so I prefer a powder finish even to my liquid foundation in order to combat that T-zone oily shine. Here are my picks for whatever your skin care needs are:

Heavy Coverage

For women who are looking to cover large scars, birthmarks, or even tatoos, I highly recommend Dermablend. It really covers hard to cover hyperpigmentation that women of color sometimes get from acne scarring. You can buy this line of foundations from Ulta. ¬†Another great range of foundations for women of color that provide heavy coverage is MAC. I personally don’t use MAC, but I know a lot of women of color who swear by it. I would say as a caveat for anyone using these heavy coverage foundations is that if you wear it for too long and you don’t wash your face, you will break out. So try to save this for special occasions only. Lastly, for my drugstore mavens, L’Oreal True Match really does work wonders. If you are worried about not finding an absolute match for your skin color, make sure to buy it from a store that has a good return policy.</p>

Medium Coverage

Medium coverage foundations are not quite as heavy as the foundations I listed above. They can cover smaller imperfections and age spots pretty well but still allows the natural skin tone to peek through. I highly recommend Lorac since its light but offers a good range of shades. The line is never too heavy, but still evens out skin tone beautifully. This line’s color range is especially good for Southeast Asian women. I would have recommended Bare Minerals in this category, but I have not had any luck finding the right shade. I feel like their range is either really light or really dark. Another issue I have with Bare Minerals is that while it initially works well, it ultimately makes my skin itch and so I had to give up wearing it. If you can find the right shade and it does not make your skin itch, it really does give you a natural finish that covers a lot of dark spots or undereye shadows.

Light Coverage

I highly recommend using a BB cream if you want a very sheer coverage that allows your natural skin’s beauty to shine through. Since BB creams are newer, their color range is a bit limited. However, I highly recommend Smashbox’s Camera Ready BB Cream. It gives you a nice every day coverage that helps you look bright eyed and bushy tailed even if you didn’t go back to sleep after Fajr (the pre-sunrise prayer). Another drugstore recommendation is the Maybelline Dream Fresh BB Cream.

Whatever your skincare needs are, my best advice is to try things out. A lot of times what works for your friend, sister, or even your mom may not work so well for you. So take my recommendations with a grain of salt and let me know what your top foundation picks are!