Bustle Exclusive

Sabrina & Idris Elba's Skin Care Brand Is A "Showcase Of Beautiful African Botanicals"

How she deals with hyperpigmentation and more.

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Growing up, Sabrina Dhowre Elba could never find a skin care brand for people that looked like her. With a deeply-rooted passion — and a bit of encouragement from her husband, actor Idris Elba — the Canada-born model began formulating her own range of products with all genders *and* all skin tones in mind, and particularly those with melanin-rich skin.

S’ABLE Labs was born out of a place of frustration, which I think a lot of people can relate to,” Elba tells Bustle. “I had really bad acne when I was younger, so I had really bad post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation. Nothing I was buying into was getting rid of it.”

The inclusive brand is a joint effort from the Elbas, focusing on targeted routines that are meant to be shared. While it’s largely created for those with melanated complexions, Elba says that doesn’t mean her brand is exclusive. The opposite, in fact.

“I actually realized if you start formulating with melanin-rich skin in mind — which is more sensitive and lacks ceramides, making skin typically drier — you actually get skin care that's better for everyone,” she says.

With star ingredients like African’s native okra plant, Elba says that S’ABLE Labs is essentially a love letter to their roots. “Idris is West African and I'm East African. Antioxidants in Africa are stronger than everywhere else because the climates are harsher,” she says. “The brand sort became this showcase of beautiful African botanicals, combined with science.”

Below, Elba shared her current skin care routine must-haves — from S’ABLE, Biossance, and more.

Her Skin-Soothing Secret

“I'm not one who does my full skin care range in the morning [the same] as I do at night, because that's when I really take comfort in my wellness moment. I always start with my micellar water. The S'ABLE Labs Micellar with rooibos has amazing ceramides and is really replenishing, so I don't feel like it's stripping. I then go in with my toner, my serum, and my moisturizer.”

Her Most-Loved Lippie

“I'm a dry lip girl, especially in the winter. At the moment, I'm loving the Biossance Squalane+ Rose Lip Balm.”

Her Everyday SPF

“Sunscreen is an absolute must — even if you're staying inside during the day, you need to put it on. The Bea sunscreen is one of the best mineral sunscreens I've found. It doesn't leave any cast, I don't feel like it clogs my pores or makes me break out in any way, and it's still nice under makeup. I’m on my fourth bottle.”

Her Hyperpigmentation Hero

“Hyperpigmentation is my big skin issue — post-inflammatory, specifically— so I love keeping my range close by to calm and keep everything at bay. I'm so excited [about] the new S'ABLE Okra Face Serum. It's got such a beautiful, creamy texture and is non-irritating. It's such a great base under makeup, as well.”