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Black Opal now has its first celebrity ambassador. The iconic brand—founded in 1994 by the late chemist Nikos P. Mouyiaris and acquired in 2019 by Desiree Rogers and Cheryl McKissack—tapped singer-actor Ryan Destiny to be the face of the brand. “I started using Black Opal when I was 16 years old. They were one of the first foundations that had my color and were also very affordable,” the multitalented muse told Vogue during an Instagram Live interview. “It’s Black woman owned, and I love being the face of the brand and helping out creatively. It feels like a full-circle moment for me.”
Maybe this is more like: Destiny’s love of makeup coincides with her career—she’s been performing ever since she can remember. She came further into the spotlight in 2013 as one of the members of girl group Love Dollhouse, and later in her role as Alexandra Crane in Fox’s hit show Star. These days, you can find Destiny in Calvin Klein x PgLang campaigns, in videos for her feel-good songs like “The Same,” and playing Jillian on Grown-ish alongside Yara Shahidi, Chloe x Halle, and other young stars. Now, she’s excited to be working on new music and also continuing the filming for her upcoming movie, Flint Strong, which was delayed last year due to COVID-19. “I’m just excited to have a little bit more normalcy this year,” she added.
With a full plate, Destiny recognizes the importance of self-care—especially during a pandemic. “I’ve been taking it day by day,” she said. “I’ve been blessed to have people around me. For a big part of quarantine, I was with my family.” In the moments when she is alone, she said she’s learned to have a core group of people you can call and really count on “to let all of the anxiety and weirdness that you feel out.” Destiny often turns to therapy as well. “It’s a weird time right now. None of us have gone through this before, and if we need a little help, that’s okay,” she said.
A little beauty therapy lifts the spirits as well, namely playing around with brown eye shadow palettes, lip balms, and lip liners from Black Opal. Destiny’s next mission, she added, is to master the application of her own lashes. She takes makeup inspiration from the likes of Lauryn Hill and Naomi Campbell. “[Growing up,] I loved seeing the darker tones on darker skin. I loved [Lauryn’s] plum lips and browns in the eye shadow,” she said. “Naomi’s makeup has always been effortless and timeless. She doesn’t even have to try.”
Many would say the same about Destiny, who always has a lit-from-within glow. “For me, [skin care is] all about making sure I have a routine that doesn’t involve a lot of steps and products,” she said. “Every time I try new things, I start going overboard and my skin is screaming and mad at me, so I try to keep it minimal,” she continued, adding that she often turns to Black Opal’s products that help with dark spots and hyperpigmentation, as well as Mario Badescu’s spot treatment. “I pretty much go to sleep with dots on my face every night,” she said with a laugh. “Sunscreen is a huge thing [for me] as well. I put it on in the day and at night. I’ve seen a huge difference,” she said. “We have this wrong perception about sunscreen and who should be using it. We all definitely need to use it.”
As for her ultra-sleek hair? She turns to her stylist, Darnell Davis, to keep it healthy. Throughout quarantine, she’s been throwing it up in a bun, “because I’ve been wearing it natural and not putting heat on it…because, where am I going?” she added with a laugh. “I remember begging my mom to have [my hair] straightened, pressed out [growing up],” Destiny reflected. While filming Star, “I took a loss when it came to my hair and the health of it,” due to the constant heat application. “I had to do a big chop after a certain point, to get back on track and get it to a healthier place. I didn’t appreciate my curls and how big my hair got until later on,” she said. Now, Destiny embraces the beauty in the versatility of her hair. “[I love] wigs and protective styles,” she said. “[I] just make sure to take care of the hair underneath.”
In the midst of all she has going on, Destiny holds to one important lesson in self-confidence: In whatever you’re pursuing or going through, she said, “you’re going to need patience with yourself. Don’t let time rush you. Trust the process and trust yourself. We compare ourselves a lot in this social media age. But your journey is yours.”
Blk/Opl Skn Even True Tri-Complex Skin Tone Brightening Gel
Black Opal True Color Pore Perfecting Liquid Foundation
Black Opal Lip and Cheek Tinted Balm
Mario Badescu Drying Lotion
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