Growing up in a Dominican home in New York, Latina beauty was about vanity for the Frias sisters. For them, cosmetics have always been rooted in communal bonding and lessons about self-confidence.
“Antes muerta que sencilla,” Shaira Frias, co-founder of Luna Magic Beauty, tells Refinery29 Somos, bringing back memories of me hearing my own Colombian mom tell me the same thing from our home in nearby New Jersey. “No es que somos vanidosas. It’s just how we were raised and it's part of our culture. Beauty is part of our DNA and that's how we grew up.”
As children, Mabel and Shaira Frias spent Sundays at the hair salon with their abuela and mami, where they were regularly reminded “ponte un poco de pinta labios, ponte un poco de rubor.” The occasion? They never needed one. Their beauty rituals were not for others to see, but for them to express themselves. It's no wonder the pair would later leverage their culture and upbringing to turn their passion for belleza into a multi-million dollar cosmetics business.
Founded in 2019, Luna Magic Beauty is a Black Latina-owned brand that sells lipsticks, shadow palettes, eye pencils, false lashes, blushes, bronzers, highlighters, makeup brushes, and more — all inspired by the diverse Latine cultures they saw and experienced in New York. Four years into the business, they have landed their products at retailers like Walmart, Target, and CVS.
When asked about their biggest motivator, the sisters agree that being first-generation Latinas is the fire that pushes them toward greatness. As they reflect on their journey so far, the Frias sisters credit their hunger to the stories of sacrifice they heard growing up.
“We have family members that were on yola boats,” Mabel shares. “They risked their lives being in the ocean, to get to Puerto Rico. My illiterate grandmother with a second-grade education used her instincts and her charisma to get her kids to the United States of America, and because of that we were able to be born here, and a lot of privilege comes with hearing those stories.”
To start Luna Magic Beauty, each of them left versions of themselves behind as well. Prior to the launch of the company, Shaira left a career in broadcast journalism to pursue makeup school. Meanwhile, Mabel was working as a digital merchandiser for luxury beauty and fashion brands. After her last gig, working with Savage X Fenty, she felt inspired to take up space, too. “Fenty was the closest experience to seeing a brand founded by a woman of color with ambassadors that are people of color, and strategy that is inclusive,” Mabel says. “It was a perfect springboard for getting more inspired.”
Recognizing both her and her sister’s unique insight and skill sets, Mabel approached Shaira with an idea: their very own negocio. “For me it's about showing that women like us can create value. We can create something meaningful,” Mabel says.
Considering their beauty know-how, we invited the sisters to share five eye makeup trends to try for spring 2023. Below, they explain why they’re loving these trends and how to achieve them with Luna Magic Beauty products.
Y2K Blue Eyeshadow
The Look: “We love all things Gen Z. Our newest shadow palette, Royal Nights Mini Palette, delivers trendy, frosted blue hues and pigment that lasts. This four quad mini palette comes with two shimmery and two matte blues for muted and bold eyeshadow looks.”
How to Achieve the Look: Begin by setting your eyelids using the nude colors in the Desnuda Shadow Palette. Then use one of the solid blue hues in the Royal Nights Mini all over the lid, and finish off by going back into the palette to select your favorite blue shimmery shade for a dazzling, bold finish.
How to Achieve the Look: “To achieve siren eyes, we go in using our Jumbo Eye Pencil to draw a thin line from the outer corner of our eyes, stopping just above the crease. Then we smudge out the pigment using the No. 21 Precision Brush in our Blend-It-Girl Blush Set. As final steps, we apply our Liquid Liner on the upper waterline of our inner eye corners to clean up and apply whichever eyeshadow we’re feeling that day.”
The Look: “Opposite of siren eyes, doe eyes are the new go-to makeup trend, perfect for the natural makeup lover.”
How to Achieve the Look: “When doing a doe eye look, we start with our Desnuda Shadow Palette, a perfect blend of nude colors to complement any skin tone. We suggest using shadow colors [like] Friend, Eccentric, or Goddess. Choose a color of your choice and blend to create a muted look on your lid. Now to achieve the doe eye effect, place a shimmery color like Exotic, Passionate, or Sister at the center of your lid and on your lower lash line. Finish with our liquid liner and mascara or faux mink lashes of your choice.”
The Look: “We love what a pop of neon can do to elevate any makeup look, so we created a palette that can be used to add a statement. Inspired by our colorful roots, we launched the Goddess Shadow Palette to represent the vibrant women and roots that influence who we are today.”
How to Achieve the Look: “This look can be achieved with a bold base. We recommend using Beautiful for a monochromatic look or Daring for a shimmery lid. Additionally, we’re loving the use of blush on lids to create seamless cheek-to-eye makeup application. If you are, too, we recommend using our Aalia Blush to focus on the apples of the cheek, and blending it around your eyes with a smaller brush for a dramatic pop.”
The Look: “This is for the days where we don’t have the energy to apply falsies, but still want to achieve the false lash look.”
How to Achieve the Look: “We double our Va-Va Pink Lash Primer and Va-Va Volume Bold Mascara for the ultimate falsy look. An extra tip for our Luna Babes: double coat both the primer and mascara for a more dramatic eye.”