Health & Fitness: Nadiya Hussain Moves From Baking to Beauty: "I’m Most Confident When My Skin Is Happy"

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Nadiya Hussain has a number of strings to her bow. While she was catapulted to fame by winning "The Great British Bake Off" in 2015, she has since authored a number of children's books, been hailed as a mental health advocate thanks to her 2021 BBC documentary "Anxiety and Me", and even baked a cake for Queen Elizabeth II's 90th birthday. And now, Hussain is taking on the beauty world as IT Cosmetics brand ambassador for confidence, her first ever beauty campaign.

"I feel most confident, I think, when my skin is really happy," Hussain tells POPSUGAR. Although, the 37-year-old is relatively new to cosmetics, having only started wearing makeup around the age of 30. "My mum isn't into skincare and she never wore makeup. My aunties didn't wear makeup, either. So I didn't grow up around grown women who wore makeup. I never saw it," she says. Sadly, this wasn't the only reason she avoided the beauty aisles. For a long time, the British-Bangladeshi baker was unable to find products suitable for her skin tone. "I remember looking at the beauty counters and never finding my own foundation. That's the base of any really good makeup", she explains. "I think that's genuinely what put me off."

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Thankfully, things are changing, with brands celebrating all skin tones, textures, and ages. "The colour that my body is enveloped in has made me feel excluded and unsure of the thing that I am most proud of today," Hussain continues. The Confidence in a Cream (£44) in particular is the product that has made her feel the most empowered, as well as the IT Cosmetics Your Skin But Better CC+ Cream with SPF50 (£33). "To find a product that not only allows me to wear my skin with even more confidence but also makes me feel prouder of who I am, is the kind of campaign that I want to put my face to."

"To find a product that not only allows me to wear my skin with even more confidence but also makes me feel prouder of who I am, is the kind of campaign that I want to put my face to."

There is a constant need for expanding ranges so that we can all embrace our uniqueness and feel a part of the beauty industry. As such, a representative for IT Cosmetics told POPSUGAR, "At IT Cosmetics we are constantly developing new and innovative formulas and we are actively working on expanding our shade range of CC+ Cream with SPF50 to include more finishes and shades in the New Year. We also offer a traditional foundation with 40 shades in our Your Skin But Better Foundation to include cool, neutral and warm undertones across all shade families."

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While it's not a typical move from baking to beauty, the mum-of-three has been known to get creative with her beauty routine and combine her two loves. "I do turmeric masks sometimes, with turmeric and olive oil. I sometimes wash my hair with apple cider vinegar - it really helps you to clear out your scalp," she divulges, as she lists the ingredients that she can eat and use. "I have, in the past, made my own exfoliants with coconut oil and sugar or coffee grounds. I have a child who has eczema, so I have also spent years doing oatmeal baths to soothe the skin."

She describes her cooking style as "very methodical", and her beauty routine is no different. "I kind of have everything set out. I don't go into my makeup drawer and think, "Ooh! A bit of this. Ooh! A bit of that. I don't do that," she tells us. "I know exactly what I'm doing. I moisturise, then put my base on, and then my eyes. With cooking and baking, I like order."

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We're used to seeing Hussain's infectious smile on our TV screens. Sometimes we see her with a bold lip, and every so often a dramatic sweep of eyeliner, but her day to day look is simple. "When it's television or if I'm doing a shoot, it's layers and layers of lots of makeup and then lots of powder. And I think the difference with day-to-day makeup is that I don't worry about powdering my nose or powdering my forehead. I glow when I'm sweating," she laughs. "There's a lot less makeup day-to-day. I work in an industry where I have makeup on all the time, so I love to give my skin a break and I really enjoy not having makeup on." Although she's always got a blusher and tub of Vaseline in her handbag just in case!

LONDON, ENGLAND - MAY 08: Mary Berry, accepting the Feature award for 'The Great British Bake Off' and Bake Off winner Nadiya Hussain pose in the Winners room at the House Of Fraser British Academy Television Awards 2016 at the Royal Festival Hall on May 8, 2016 in London, England. (Photo by Stuart C. Wilson/Getty Images) © Getty Images LONDON, ENGLAND - MAY 08: Mary Berry, accepting the Feature award for 'The Great British Bake Off' and Bake Off winner Nadiya Hussain pose in the Winners room at the House Of Fraser British Academy Television Awards 2016 at the Royal Festival Hall on May 8, 2016 in London, England. (Photo by Stuart C. Wilson/Getty Images)

Hussain, who also admitted she's not watching "Bake Off" this year due to her busy schedule, has been open about her struggles with anxiety and panic attacks in the past, and has since found that applying makeup and skincare has become a "therapeutic" ritual. "As somebody who's really busy, just carving out 15 or 20 minutes of your time just to do your face is quite lovely. I enjoy putting on makeup, and I also love the feeling of scrubbing it off," she says.

It's these small tasks that can make all the difference to our general wellbeing, and why Hussain has chosen to become the ambassador for confidence at IT Cosmetics. Beauty is about more than aesthetics and vanity, it's about embracing the things that make you different from everyone else. "I find my boldness in being unique and knowing that there is only one of me," she says.

Nadiya Hussain is a brand ambassador for confidence for IT Cosmetic's "Beautiful Without IT, Beautiful With IT" campaign.

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