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New Detroit-based lipstick collection is all about empowering women

Ashley Zlatopolsky
Special to The Detroit News

A new makeup collection with festive shades that go beyond red, gold and green has arrived just in time to add a splash of color to the holiday season.

Presented by Detroit beauty line FaceFx by Pheobe Scott, the Ask Jennyfer Collection, now available for purchase online at www.thefacefx.com or at a Corktown holiday pop-up shop, was created in partnership with small business entrepreneur and advocate Jennyfer Crawford. The goal is to help women of all shades and backgrounds feel empowered through makeup.

“We’re all about helping customers find their purpose and reach their full potential,” Scott, 27 of Detroit, says of her line. “All of the colors are what the brand represents.”

Presented by Detroit beauty line FaceFx by Pheobe Scott, the Ask Jennyfer Collection, now available for purchase online or at a Corktown holiday pop-up shop, was created in partnership with small business entrepreneur and advocate Jennyfer Crawford. The goal is to help women of all shades and backgrounds feel empowered through makeup. Photo by Naomi Tajonera

Inspired by Crawford’s work in business development, which has helped more than 250 small local businesses with marketing, the four matte lipsticks that make up the new collection are symbolic of the values the two women share.

There is Jennyfer-It, a bold burgundy; Not Afraid, a copper nude; Advocate, a nude pink; and Influencer, a bright turquoise blue. These shades, which retail for $20 each, are meant to inspire women in everyday life, whether it’s to feel more confident at work or to simply go to the grocery store. We “speak to that woman who may be afraid during this time,” Scott says.

The idea for the collaboration, which was created in the summer months of the COVID-19 pandemic, stemmed from a need both women saw to help others make it through this tough time. The Not Afraid shade especially highlights that message.

“It’s important to feel beautiful now more than ever,” Scott explains. “If you have that one thing that makes you feel amazing, we want you to do those small things that make you feel empowered.” Makeup may not be for everyone, but many women, she says, like to turn to beauty products to feel inspired throughout this challenging year. It can help create a sense of normalcy while social distancing and working or learning from home.

Influencer: This bold, bright turquoise blue stands out in any crowd.

While the Jennyfer-It shade was created in honor of Crawford’s accomplishments, the three other shades - Not Afraid, Advocate and Influencer - are all things women can strive to become, Scott says.

It’s a lesson Crawford personally learned early on. “In my career I was really miserable,” she describes of the time before launching her own business, Ask Jennyfer, which now includes curating events such as All Things Detroit and the summer Night Market in Beacon Park.

She began by hosting small pop-up events for entrepreneurs and quickly learned how many other people were also in her shoes. “They really had a passion for doing what they loved, but they had no resources,” Crawford, 40, of Detroit, explains. “They didn’t have anyone who could be a voice or encourage them to move forward, so I felt like that was something I should do.”

Crawford is especially passionate about female entrepreneurs supporting one another, which is one of the main reasons the two women clicked when discussing a partnership. “I knew that she represented the brand,” Scott says, who launched her beauty company in 2019 and aims to provide affordable, cruelty-free products with a message. “We're all about being influential and innovating and that’s what Jennyfer is about, too.”

The four shades were developed throughout the fall. To get their shades just right and make sure that their audience felt represented, Scott and Crawford worked closely to test different pigments and combinations. “The colors that I chose, I wanted them to be colors that are for all different shades of women and nationalities,” Crawford says. “I didn't want anyone to feel like they were left out.”

Not Afraid: This copper nude works well for a day or night – from a business meeting and beyond.

Crawford focused on colors that could stand out and be versatile for everyday use or nights out, the latter of which she says is exemplified by the shade Influencer. It was also important that the four shades connected with their titles and messages. “We really thought about the names,” she continues, “because we wanted them to be very strong.”

The Ask Jennyfer Collection shines a light on Detroit partnerships and empowerment, but the hometown pride doesn’t stop there. FaceFX by Pheobe Scott also includes a Detroit-themed eyeshadow palette inspired by the colors of the Motor City, along with a variety of brushes and face products.

Scott hosts weekly makeup tutorials and application techniques on her Instagram and Facebook to help customers learn how to use her products. Crawford, who was previously unfamiliar with how to wear and apply makeup, says learning how to apply the lipstick line she and Scott created has helped her step outside of her comfort zone.

“In doing that, I feel empowered,” Crawford explains. “I feel strong and beautiful.”

FaceFX Holiday pop-up shop

1620 Michigan Ave., Ste. #120

Detroit, MI 48216