“I realised the oversight of the beauty world in not considering the needs of transfeminine people with their products”
BY DOMINIC BRAMLEY-CARR
Founded in 2018 to provide products catered towards transfeminine people who had often been overlooked by the beauty industry, Jecca Blac is an inclusive, vegan and cruelty-free beauty brand for everyone with some seriously fantastic products. I caught up with founder, Jessica Blackler, to find out a bit about Jecca Blac’s journey and the amazing things they’re doing for the LGBTQI community in the world of beauty.
As a queer person who loves wearing makeup, I really appreciate and admire everything you’re doing to make the beauty industry more inclusive. How and why did you get started in the beauty industry?
Thank you! It means a lot that you appreciate the work we do. I started out as a makeup artist in film and television – so my experience before starting Jecca Blac was as a makeup artist on sets, which meant I was constantly working with a lot of different faces! Because of the experience I’d gained with makeup artistry on so many different people of all walks of life, I felt fully confident in my knowledge of how to transform an individual’s features – and my need to make that knowledge more widespread and accessible for every makeup wearer was really where the idea behind Jecca Blac began.
Could you tell us a little bit about why you started Jecca Blac in the first place?
Before we became a makeup retailer, Jecca Blac began as an educational makeup studio for makeup wearers to come and learn about products and application in a judgement free, safe space setting. I wanted to create a really welcoming space for people of any skill set to come and gain industry standard skills, while also exploring what it meant for them to express themselves with makeup in any way they saw fit. More clients heard about my one-to-one makeup lessons via their friends who had been to visit my studio, and I quickly built up a customer base of trans women and transfeminine people at the very start of their journey with self-expression. In these lessons, I realised the oversight of the beauty world in not considering the needs of transfeminine people with their products. Because of this, I launched our first ever product – the Correct & Conceal Palette, which was designed to meet a multitude of base coverage needs but can also be used to provide simple and effective coverage to beard shadow.
Do you mind explaining a bit about your products i.e. how they can be used and what you would recommend if you’re starting out on your makeup journey?
Definitely! Well, all our products are vegan and cruelty-free, which was really important to me when first developing products for the brand. When it comes to building your makeup collection from scratch, I’ve seen first-hand how daunting it can be to take those first steps of starting your collection and developing your skills from scratch. We think it’s really important to give yourself time and to remember it’s not a race – you’ll get to where you’d like to be, but it takes time and practice.
First, consider what your skin type is and what you’re looking to gain from your base. Are you looking to conceal acne or beard shadow, or would you prefer a lighter coverage (if any)? Is your skin oily, dry or combination? Do you want to learn how to contour? As a start, you could find a Primer suited to your skin and base needs. Our range of primers cater to every skin type and desired skin finish – for example, our Glow Drops Primer is great for makeup wearers who want a dewy base, and our Blur & Matte Primer is popular among makeup wearers with oily skin types or uneven skin texture. Once you’ve chosen a primer, think about how much coverage you would like – our Liquid Concealer provides full coverage and a soft matte finish, while our Correct & Conceal Palette provides a medium coverage and can be used as an all over base. Once you have chosen a base product suited to your ideal level of coverage, our award-winning Sculpt & Soften Palette contains a guide which details how to build a contouring regime tailored specifically to your features and desired result. If you want to add some colour to your eyes, lips and cheeks, our Play Pots are cream pigments which are designed to add a playful pop of colour to the eyes, lips, cheeks, or anywhere on the face and body you want to add some colour to. Simply apply with a brush or your fingertips and use as a cream blush, eyeshadow or lip tint!
We also offer free makeup assistance – to begin your free consultation, all you need to do is submit a selfie.
Are there any particular moments or people that have stood out to you on your journey with the brand?
A few highlights come to mind. I provided voluntary makeup lessons to trans prisoners at a Category B prison in Wales. The sessions began because a local paper had reported on my safe space makeup lessons which had started to become more well known in the trans community, and a copy of the paper made it into the prison I ended up providing the voluntary lessons in. A few of the prisoners were transitioning during their time in prison and requested for me to come and teach them how to do makeup. We also held London’s first ever Trans Festival in February of 2020 pre-lockdowns, and we have plans underway to bring it back now that restrictions around large events are easing.
We saw that you recently partnered with GenderGP to offer individual makeup lessons. Could you explain a bit about that process and what you offer?
We began with safe space makeup lessons and we’ve always prioritised an educational, safe space experience for everything that we do. Given the community led synergy between Jecca Blac and GenderGP, you can book a makeup call via GenderGP with one of our experts where we will give you a 30 minute tutorial over Zoom. We also offer free makeup assistance over email, which you can book direct by submitting a selfie on our site. We also provide free makeup consultation calls to all customers once they have received their order in case they have any questions about developing their skillset or learning more about their application.
What do you have planned for Jecca Blac’s future? Where do you see the brand going and do you have anything new launching soon?
We have some very exciting launches and announcements in the pipeline, so be sure to keep an eye out for those! I can’t give away too much, but we have some really exciting plans underway and are particularly excited to bring back an even bigger and better Trans Festival.
DIVA magazine celebrates 28 years in print in 2022. If you like what we do, then get behind LGBTQI media and keep us going for another generation. Your support is invaluable.
✨ linktr.ee/divamagazine ✨