Uoma Beauty's founder Sharon Chuter has been looking forward to the summer all year. Not only because she loves soaking up the sun but also because she's been preparing to release the brand's first summer-inspired makeup launch. The collection, appropriately named "Salute to the Sun," has been in the works for over two years.
Chuter says the idea came to her while traveling in the Middle East in early 2020. When borders started to close due to the pandemic, and she was unsure if she'd be able to travel home, feeling the sun on her skin helped relieve some of her anxiety. "That was when I got inspired to do [a collection] like this," she explains. "The sun can be such redemption or rescue in a time of uncertainty. This led me to start researching the sun and spirituality, and I learned more about the ancient Egyptians and their unique relationship to the sun."
When thinking of the types of products to create, Chuter kept asking herself, What are going to be the summer essentials? The colorful collection includes the Salute to the Sun Eyeshadow Palette ($44), Face and Body Highlighter ($25), Nefertiti Kuul Eyeliner ($20), Black Magic Hypnotic Impact High Shine Lipstick ($24), and Drama Bomb Extreme Volume Nourishing Mascara ($20). The resulting range of products leans into the playfulness of summer while paying homage to the beauty of Egypt.
Products like the Nefertiti Kuul Eyeliner—available in a royal blue, earthy brown, and rich black shade—draw direct inspiration from Egyptian beauty rituals. "In general, Africa has a very strong relationship with Kohl liners," Chuter says. "They had to be a part of this collection."
Chuter infused elements of Egyptian culture into the packaging and shade range as well, ensuring that the country's rich culture was celebrated correctly from end to end. "From the iconography, you'll be able to see the eye of Ra, the sun god, around the products," she says while referencing the packaging. "You will see the scarab, a major symbol that turns day into night and vice versa. All of the shade names are also written in ancient Egyptian Arabic."
While finalizing the color palette for each product, Chuter thought about the hues that defined ancient Egypt. "Blue was a hero shade because it is a prominent color of antique Egyptian jewelry," Chuter says. "The colors in the eyeshadow palette are also the prominent colors of ancient Egypt."
After spending over two years working on this collection, it's an understatement to say Chuter is excited to share it with the world finally. But, she says gearing up for a new launch still makes her nervous. "It's beautiful and nerve-wracking because you never know how the market will receive a new collection," Chuter shares. "You pour your heart and soul into your art, and you hope people love it as much as you do."
Ultimately, Chuter hopes the "Salute to the Sun" collection sparks joy. Whether someone is swiping on the blue mascara or slathering their skin in the highlighter, she hopes the products make people feel light-hearted. "I hope this collection makes them feel free," Chuter adds. "I hope it makes them feel beautiful. Because that's what this summer has to be about."