The Concept Store Founder Who Just Wants To Look Like Her Grandma


The #ITGTopShelfie interview series focuses on the beauty routines of Into The Gloss' lovely, accomplished, and loyal community of readers. Submit your own on Instagram—post your Top Shelfie (tag us @intothegloss!) and include the hashtag #ITGTopShelfie for a chance to be featured on ITG.

“Hi! My name is Amira Rasool (@amirarasool). I’m the Founder and CEO of The Folklore, a curated online concept store that sells luxury and emerging designer fashion and lifestyle brands from Africa to global customers. We also recently started selling a selection of luxury beauty products from Black-owned South African, Moroccan, and American brands, and we’ll be adding to that in the next few months. My favorite thing about my job is that I’m able to provide our customers with exclusive access to special products they’ve never seen before. Most importantly, I love that I’m providing brands with the opportunity to grow their international presence and customer base, increase their revenues, and learn how to develop their brands into global powerhouses.

I live between New York City and Cape Town, and I’m always busy hopping on a plane or running to a shoot. My style is minimalist and comfortable—as the CEO of a fashion company, I want to look and feel like my best self even when I’m in a rush. I’m really into solid earth tone separates, long oversized dresses, and wild card pieces with bright colors and prints. My beauty routine is simple and quick. Most of the time I’m rocking the ‘no makeup’ makeup look with natural brown eyeshadows and a brown nude lip. Or, I might actually not be wearing makeup—I’m completely fine going without it as long as my skin looks good. My goal when I'm wearing makeup is always to look like I do without it on.

I started experimenting with beauty my freshman year of high school. Like so many people did, I went to the MAC store and let one of the artists do my makeup. Sitting in the chair was so cool for me, I remember feeling really beautiful and confident after. Afterwards, they told me what products to buy and how to use them. Now my makeup routine is exclusively made up of products from Black-owned brands, but the steps I do have pretty much remained the same.

The first thing I do is my eyebrows. I use the brown shade from my Juvia’s Place Saharan II eyeshadow palette, Fez, to thicken my brows a bit, and then my Juvia’s place concealer in shade 12 around my eyebrows to define them. Next I apply my Mented foundation in M10, which I use more like a concealer. I just put it under my eyes, on my checks where I have acne scars, and above my lip to brighten that area. The Mented foundation brush is really great for blending. Then I do my eyes—I usually stick to a neutral brown powder shadow from the Mented Everyday eyeshadow palette, and sometimes I’ll apply Pat McGrath Labs liquid eyeliner too. If not, I always make sure to highlight my eyes with Beauty Bakerie mascara. Then I apply Mented powder in Medium/Deep on my face to set it, a red blush from my Juvia’s Place Saharan Vol. 1 blush palette, and finish it off with Beauty Bakerie Chocolate for Breakfast Lip Whip. I love how dark, wine-colored lipsticks look on dark brown skin, and this one stays on all day no matter what I eat or do. Finally, I go back to my brows and comb them out to make them look more natural, and finish everything off with Beauty Bakerie setting spray.

I two-strand twist my hair every night to keep it from getting knotty, and I also sleep in a bonnet. Then in the morning I just undo my twists, spray a mix of water and leave-in conditioner, and oil my hair. That daily routine keeps my curls looking fresh and moisturized until wash day on Sunday. I love turning wash day into a hip-hop karaoke session, and I usually post videos on my Instagram Story. My wash day products are all from Black-founded hair care companies. I wash with the Camille Rose Sweet Ginger Cleansing Rinse and deep condition it with the Shea Moisture Strengthen and Restore Treatment Masque, which I leave in for 30 minutes under a shower cap. I wash out the masque, add in Camille Rose Moroccan Pear Conditioning Custard, wash that out, and then use Kinky-Curly Knot Today conditioner to detangle. The easiest way for me to detangle is by separating my hair into four to six sections and detangling them one at a time. Once I’m finished with a section, I put in Miss Jessie’s Pillow Soft Curls and Jamaican Black Castor Oil from Tropic Isle to seal the moisture.

This summer I made the deliberate choice to make sure the products I use on my face are from Black or woman-owned companies. It used to just be Black-owned, but I’m now really into Korean skincare products and follow a Korean skincare regimen. The one exception to that rule is Pond’s Cold Cream. My grandma Shirley used it for most of her life, and she looks 20 years younger than she is. I’m just trying to look like my grandma when I’m 80, so no matter what new products or practices I add to my routine, I always find a way to integrate Pond’s into it. Right now I’m using it to take off my makeup at night, if I’m wearing any, and after that I wash my face with Peach & Lily’s Power Calm Hydrating Gel Cleanser. I use the same cleanser in the mornings, then the rest of my routine is pretty much the same. I apply their Good Acids Pore Toner and a bit of Klairs vitamin C serum to help lighten my acne scars. I really want to try a laser treatment to help rejuvenate my skin, because I feel like it could use a fresh start. While I’m trying to figure out if laser is for me or not, topicals help. Next I use Peach & Lily’s Glass Skin Serum and Beauty Bakerie’s Wake & Bake Oil. I’m currently looking for a good moisturizing cream to use before the oil, but I’m still deciding which one I should try. In the morning, I always finish with Black Girl Sunscreen.

I also use a Peach & Lily’s Firm sheet mask for 20 minutes on Friday or Saturday night to unwind after a long week. My all time favorite thing to relax is traveling to a place with a nice beach and hot weather, reading Black literature during the day and watching Netflix in bed at night.”

—as told to ITG

Photos via the author