Nabela Noor has a voice that can calm even the most restless seas. She doesn’t talk, but rather sings each word, her voice slipping into a high pitch as she greets me and other attendees on our Zoom call. Only one word can describe the Bangladeshi-American beauty guru who rose to fame with her inspiring and body positivity-focused makeup tutorials on YouTube, and then again on TikTok with her heart-warming lifestyle videos that remind viewers to always put themselves first, and that word is peace.
“When you give yourself the permission to spend time on you, you open the door to the reality that you deserve the tender love and care you so willingly shower to others,” she says in one video posted in April. It’s part of what she likes to call her “Pockets of Peace,” a TikTok series that focuses on “celebrating those little moments and romanticizing the mundane,” she explains over Zoom. But it was only a matter of time before the beauty guru returned to her roots, thanks to a new collection with clean beauty brand PÜR.
The PÜR x Nabela collection is built around Noor’s tentpole themes of self-love and self-care, and arrives in soft blush pink packaging that’s as dreamy and bright as her video aesthetic. Noor’s collection is set to launch with a presale event starting Oct. 29 and running through Nov. 3, ahead of the full launch on Nov. 5 at purcosmetics.com, ulta.com, and macys.com.
With the pandemic shifting makeup lovers toward a minimalist, soft glam approach, Noor aimed to create a collection of multi-tasking products that encourage individualism. Boasting four curated items—Embrace Your Face Eye & Cheek Palette ($28), Refresh Brightening Cleanser with Turmeric ($24), Reset Detoxifying Mask with Turmeric ($22), Celebrate You Creamy Lip Chubby ($22)—the PÜR x Nabela collection salutes her Bangladeshi heritage with palette shades featuring fun names like “Mishti Rose” and “Benegal” and the star ingredient, turmeric. “With this collection, you don’t have to put a lot of thought into it. You can just whip a shadow on, whip a blush on, whip a highlighter on, and look beautiful,” Noor adds. “That’s what this collection is all about.”
Ahead, Noor opens up about her self-love journey, her new collab, and the Bangladeshi beauty tips passed down from her mother.
Congrats on your pregnancy! What has this journey of motherhood revealed most about yourself?
I feel like I learned so much about the power of resilience and about our individual strength as mothers and mothers-to-be. But for me personally, this was such a divine blessing, and it really taught me the importance of trusting timing and just trusting a higher power when I least expected it. I was blessed with this miracle. This time has led me to believe more in miracles and believe more in dreams coming true, because mine did. My baby is bringing me joy right now. The idea that I’ll be reading my [Beautifully Me] book to her while holding her and the idea that everything I have ever dreamt of will be in my hands.
What does self-care mean to you personally?
I think self-care and self-love go hand-in-hand. I believe in practicing self-love through self-care. The best way that I show up for myself and the practices that I do daily to show up for myself is a reflection of my self-love and my dedication to self-care. Self-care, to me, is paramount for a competent life. I love spending time with my family. One of the reasons why I still live in a small town in Pennsylvania is because of my love for my family and being very family-oriented. I love to cook South Asian dishes in the kitchen and explore more in the kitchen, which I’ve discovered over the last year and a half that I have a big passion for. I love painting and home design and writing. Creating, basically. I feel fulfillment when I create something and can either enjoy it myself or watch others enjoy it.
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When did self-love become important to you?
Around college time, I realized that if I did not make the radical decision to unconditionally love myself, I would be chasing this unrealistic standard of beauty for the rest of my life. I didn’t want to reserve my happiness for a later date, a later wait. I didn’t want to wait until I lost X amount of pounds to finally consider myself beautiful. I didn’t want to wait until I looked like this person or morphed into that person. I was fed up with not feeling enough and that led to me having to think to myself, What if today was the last day? What if today was it and I spent my whole life wishing I was the girl next to me or the girl on the screen or the girl in the magazine? Who got to be me? Who got to enjoy being me? The most liberating thing of my life was when I decided that I’m going to love myself without apology. It changed my life. It changed my perspective on life, and then it just became this thing that I wanted everybody else to experience too.
Talk to me a little bit about the inspiration behind this collection, because even the packaging gives you a sense of calm.
I wanted to create a collection that reflected my makeup evolution over the last year and a half of my life. I have evolved. My relationship with makeup has evolved. My relationship with myself has evolved. How I approach my beauty routine and my self-care routine has evolved, and I wanted something that reflected that. I wanted to create something that naturally integrated itself into people’s everyday lives. To me, it’s the ultimate collection to fit into your self-care routine, your everyday routine, your beauty routine. It is natural. It’s wearable. It is feel-good, which I think is the theme and the common denominator and everything that I want to do with my time on the internet. When I look at the colors and when I think of the products and the nourishing ingredients and everything about this collection, it is such a feel-good collection.
Has the pandemic forced you to oversimplify your beauty routine in a way?
We’re in this era of just really embracing natural tones, things that are multi-use or just having products that are making things easier in our day-to-day. That’s why the palette to me is such a star, because it has your blushes, it has your eyeshadows, it has your highlighters. When you are getting ready with those few minutes that you have, you can have a full, beautiful, soft glam look or a very natural, neutral, wearable look in just one palette. My makeup collection has really sized down over the pandemic. I want to do my makeup in 15 minutes or less. I have ditched falsies. There are so many changes I’ve made, and I think that this collection reflects that evolution of wanting to wear less, but still feeling enough.
The tones and the shades are very you. Why did you decide to reference your Bangladeshi culture?
One of the most special things about this collection is how we incorporated my Bangladeshi heritage, our language, and even culturally-rich ingredients, in the products. You’re going to find the shade Asha, which is a beautiful color that I’ve never really seen before. Bengal is this beautiful gold, and Nora is such a stunning highlighter. We have our turmeric in the cleanser and the mask which is so awesome because turmeric is a beauty secret in South Asian countries. When you get married back in Bangladesh and in South Eastern culture in general, there’s a pre-gaming event prior to the wedding that’s a glam routine and an awesome celebration. Your friends and family come and they actually pick up some of the paste and apply it on your face and your arms as a way of prepping you and getting you excited for your big day.
What are some beauty tips you remember picking up from your mom growing up?
First of all, turmeric. Making masks at home using turmeric and honey was so, so necessary in my day-to-day life growing up. My mom would always sit down to put oil in my hair and I remember being so frustrated. I’m like, “I don’t want to put oils in my hair!” But they were really enriching, nourishing oils, and it’s such an intimate practice that happens between mother or guardian and daughter. The oils always made my hair look so shiny and luscious, and the turmeric masks would always make my skin look so great ahead of picture day.
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Tell me about the genesis of Pockets of Peace and the message you wanted to send?
During the pandemic, I didn’t know what to do with myself, so Pockets of Peace really started right at the onset of quarantine. Everything felt so dark, so scary, so uncertain, so I wanted to just make a series of videos where I would go about my day and only focus on what went right at a time where there were so many things going wrong. What were the moments that felt good and brought me peace that I wanted to highlight? That’s how Pockets of Peace began, and it’s inspired other people to find those little moments of goodness in each day, because it exists. It can be something as simple as making your favorite cup of coffee or pulling up to the driveway after a long day of work and just staying in for a few minutes and listening to your favorite song. Pockets of Peace means for us to take time to be still and practice the art of savoring.
You have to savor these moments so they don’t slip or get whisked away because of the busyness of your day. I think this entire collection inspires you to be still, inspires you to take some time for yourself, inspires you to just focus on something that went well and remember your own individual beauty. This collection is just a big hug to yourself, because you deserve it.
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