In honour of Black History Month, I have written a list of black-owned makeup brands you need to try, TODAY!
I can remember when I first started to wear makeup. I bought the darkest foundation colour the local drugstore had. The colour was so light that I looked sick. In those days, *starting to sound like someone’s grandmother*, there weren’t many brands that had a wide range of foundation colours, especially not drugstore brands. Who really had the money back then to buy high-end products?
I’ve tried a lot of drugstore brands that just were a hit and miss. Thankfully things have changed (a bit), and brands are becoming aware that black people want matching foundations too.
You must’ve seen it on Twitter, beauty brands have been questioned numerous times about how they can be inclusive to everyone and whether they’re doing enough for people of colour. Especially, if a brand introduces a new foundation line and forgets to include half of the shades for the darker spectrum. Seriously, there are more shades after Tan almond, thanks. Some brands do try and have a wide range of shades, for example, Nars, Fenty and Mac. Drugstore brands have been stepping up their game as well. But there’s still work to be done. Not to be petty but when there are 30+ colours in the lighter spectrum available and less than 10 in the dark spectrum, that’s lowkey still a miss (e.g. Maybelline, sorry not sorry).
I understand that black people come in all kinds of beautiful shades and undertones, and it’s proven that creating a foundation for darker skin tones is more challenging than for lighter skin tones. But after everything we as the black community have been through, to all the brands I say “try a little harder”, it’s the least you can do. Until brands get it right, let’s try some black-owned makeup brands. I mean who better than a black-owned business to know the struggle of getting the correct foundation colour.
I believe one of the most famous black-owned makeup brands must be Fenty Beauty by Rihanna. With 50 shades evenly divided between the light and dark spectrum, you’re bound to find a foundation that matches your complexion. Let’s also give a shout out to black-owned makeup brands in the UK.
This London based makeup brand was founded in 2016 by pharmacist Toyin Fajemirokun Onyolu. This brand understands that we come in many shades. Although they only have ten shades, their foundation starts with a medium colour. All their colours are catered to people of colour. Also, I know I’m biased, but as the company is just over four years old I’ll give them a little pass for just having ten shades. Black shades and undertones do need more research to develop. Hopefully, they’ll be able to add more shades, because sis we’re ready! Plus, for a drugstore price of £16.99, I’m definitely giving them a chance.
Made for people with deep and dark skin tones and sensitive skins. The foundation is hypoallergenic, non-comedogenic, fragrance-free and paraben-free. Their long wear and high definition foundation contain Vitamin A, C & E, Aloe Vera, Chamomile, Beeswax, Vanilla, Wheatgerm and Gingko & Gingseng which provide skin rejuvenating and replenishing benefits. The foundation comes in 15 shades at £21 per bottle. The thing I like the most about this brand is that you can try a selection of 4 sample colours for £2.50 because who knows what colour they need based on a picture online.
A cruelty-free beauty brand, OPV Beauty was started by two sisters who wanted to offer products to different ethnicities. They saw that most brands didn’t offer that much diversity and wanted to create a brand that was inclusive to all skin tones. I’ll talk about their foundation in a bit but just wanted to give a small shout out to their loose pigment. They have several bold loose pigment colours and I can tell you the colours are vibrant! The endless eyeshadow looks on their Instagram are honestly impressive. Their stick foundation comes in 15 different colours, has a matte finish and is buildable.
There loads of different established brands that for years have side-eyed people with a darker complexion. They figured that the colour Deep Mahogany was suited for you, your mother, your sister, your best friend, and your neighbour from two doors down. Luckily, they’ve realised that we come in various shades – who knew? With new beauty brands being created every day is the old establishment little too late? Well, I am happy that I have numerous options available and can choose between light coverage to full coverage. The days of looking like a powdered doughnut sneezed on my face are over.