Beauty Detail

Maya Jama Has A Genius Ulterior Use For Face Masks

The DJ-turned-presenter discusses launching her own beauty brand & her hero products.

In Bustle’s Beauty Detail, we dive into the beauty bags of our favourite talents for intel on the rituals that keep them glowing and the MVPs (most valuable products) they can't live without. Here, Maya Jama tells Bustle about her earliest skin care memories and launching her own beauty brand, MIJ Masks.

"I’m obsessed with skin care, but I’ve actually never really been that good at keeping on top of it," Maya Jama tells me, her face glowing, even via Zoom. "In my mind, a mask always saves the day." Which makes sense, given that the British DJ-turned-TV presenter has just launched her own beauty brand, MIJ Masks.

Despite her seemingly laid-back approach to skin care, her interest goes way back. "I never grew up with fancy skin care," she says, "it was just the Boots basics kind of stuff." Bio-Oil and Nivea were her first port of call, age 12. "And Sudocrem. That was used for everything in my house. And then there was that apricot scrub," she adds, referring to the now-controversial St. Ives formula.

These days, Jama likes nothing more than "a mammoth pamper night." A luxurious bath, followed by a "skin care party" (which involves mixing a number of creams and oils together – namely Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Complex and Medik8's eye serum) after an MIJ mask. "I just love dousing myself in all the products," she smiles, "to the point where you couldn’t realistically leave the house; that's how much of a creamy face I go for."

But masks are her beauty mastermind subject. "I started posting pictures on Instagram on the way to work in face and eye masks, and people responded with the same. It became a silly social thing. I realised I know a lot about [face] masks and was basically promoting loads of other brands, so I thought, 'Why don’t I just do my own?!'"

Not that it was easy, though. "They were meant to have come out months ago," she says, referring to production challenges thrown up by the pandemic. Still, here we are. MIJ Masks launched with two offerings: a bio-cellulose all-over sheet mask that features super-hydrating ingredients like glycerin, argidone, and hyaluronic acid; and an under-eye option with glycerin, panthenol, and hyaluronic acid, to plump and nourish.

The minimal, curated line represents what Jama feels will be the biggest skin care trend come 2021: simplicity. With that in mind, we asked her to share the six products she can't live without.

Dry Shampoo

"I’ve been using Batiste since school and it has saved me so many times. I always have a mini in my bag. I’m the type of person who, if I have had a blow dry, will really drag it out as long as humanly possible. Dry shampoo really helps."

Go-To Oil

"I am clumsy as hell and always have some kind of scar or scab or whatever. Bio-Oil applied after a bath or shower makes you feel like a newborn in the morning, and helps with scars. This was a staple in my house when growing up, and always will be."

Concealer

"It’s the best concealer in the world. I talk about it all the time. It was the first bit of expensive makeup I bought while at school and I’ve used it ever since. I remember holding onto it and taking out the tiniest bit each day because I didn’t want it to run out. I have two shades, as I find I get better coverage this way. I use the darker one first, and then the lighter one to brighten and hide sins."

An All-Purpose Cream

"This has also been in my life forever and really solves everything. I use it all the time for spots."

Face Masks

"Not only do they just make me look fresh and bright in the morning, I also use them as my disguise. When I answer the door and haven’t done my makeup or whatever, I use the masks as a sort of, ‘Oh I’m in the middle of something.’ It’s a nice little glow-up situation."

A Homemade Hair Mask
Shutterstock

"I love Aussie hair masks, but I also like to make my own. I use my mum’s recipe, which includes raw eggs, olive oil, and Manuka honey. You mash it all together, put it all over your head, and wrap a plastic shower cap round your head to make it all steamy. It’s great for curly hair too; it adds all the protein back into your hair. Leave it on for as long as you can deal with the stench, really! 15 minutes minimum."