Thursday May 30th, 2024
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This Saudi Brand Celebrates Natural Beauty With Minimalist Cosmetics

With its authentic products, this Saudi beauty brand took centre stage as the main sponsor of the inaugural Riyadh Fashion Week.

Riham Issa

This Saudi Brand Celebrates Natural Beauty With Minimalist Cosmetics

In a world where beauty products serve as an accessory to fashion, the thought of partaking in a 12-step makeup routine – or rather repeatedly reapplying foundation during the workday – to withstand the region’s harsh weather conditions seems quite daunting for Arab women with ultra-sensitive skin who simply want to look pretty. Fret not, kindred spirits; Asteri’s desert-proof long-lasting cosmetics aim to rewrite this narrative.

Hailing from Saudi Arabia, Asteri is forging a space for modern Arab women in the global beauty industry with its A-beauty products, which merge protective skincare properties with buildable makeup. “In an industry that often perpetuates false representation, I wanted to create something that truly speaks to Saudi women and reflects who they are in a non-stereotypical way,” Sara Al Rashed, founder and CEO of Asteri tells SceneStyled.

Growing up in an all-female household with three sisters, Al Rashed saw makeup as far from a superficial act. Rather, it was a means to connect with her family and express her individuality. In the nuanced realm of multi-layered foundations and painfully heavy kohl presumed by global beauty brands as the suitable glam for Saudi women, however, the factor of durability seemed to have been lost in a vortex when it came to formulating the products. Though finding that certain formulas can be a difficult process of trials and errors for some, Al Rashed sought to create what she describes as “a makeshift desert-proof testing lab to make sure our products can endure the extreme heat and humidity, and still be light and easy on the skin.”

From ultra-volumizing mascara and laser-cut kohl liners to translucent eyeshadows and smooth lipsticks in iridescent green tubes, Asteri’s diverse collection of cosmetics offers an innovative twist on everyday makeup that aims to enhance your natural beauty. “Our products don’t only cater to the different skin tones of the diverse populations of Arab regions,” Al Rashed says. “They are also cruelty-free, micro-plastic free and refillable.”

Rooted in the Saudi nomadic culture, Asteri’s moniker, meaning ‘a star’ in Greek, succinctly captures the brand’s essence of sisterhood. “In our culture, we look up to the stars in the night sky for guidance. When you look closely, you notice that each one is different from the other, yet, when you take a step back, you find that all of these stars are equally as bright,” Al Rashed says. “That’s what Asteri is all about..inclusivity and celebrating the diverse beauty of Arab women.”

For Al Rashed, beauty begins with confidence. “For some people, something as simple as applying red lipstick can give them the self-assurance they need, while for others, it can be applying a little bit of concealer to cover up a blemish, or on certain days, some may feel the most confident going out bare-faced only with no makeup at all.”

Shortly after gracing the online sphere, the Saudi beauty brand took centre stage as the main sponsor of the inaugural Riyadh Fashion Week. “We worked with acclaimed makeup artist Vimi Joshi, along with a team of 20 local and international makeup artists who designed the looks for all of  the shows,” Al Rashed recalls. “We also had an Asteri Glam Station for the guests to do some finishing touches before attending the shows.”

Echoing the brand’s ethos of celebrating natural beauty, the glam focused on accentuating the model’s complexion by pairing Asteri’s signature Aura Radiant Foundation, with its Arabian Sun Bronzer in Golden Hour shade, and Desert Diamond Highlighter. Meanwhile, for a little shimmer, Joshi added a swipe of eyeshadow on the models’ eyes in Topaz from Asteri’s Maha palette, before finishing off with a touch of Asteri’s sweet oasis lip gloss to complete the glamorous aesthetic.

Having originally emerged in the regional beauty industry as an online brand, Asteri is now taking its refillable lipsticks, shimmering highlighter and luxurious mascaras to dabble into real life with its first physical retail store in Saudi Arabia, which, as Sara reveals to us, will happen “sooner than you think.”

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