Have you ever walked into a makeup store, browsed the aisle looking for something that is remotely close to your skin tone, but can’t find a foundation to match?
Then you ask for assistance from a woman who’s nowhere near your skin tone and doubt she can help you?
You purchase the foundation she promised would be flawless and cover up your blemishes.
Now you’re hype and snap-chatting your Sephora bag (we’ve all been there). But then when you get home and apply the product to your face and realize your face is orange instead of brown.
This is a Black Girl problem.
Beauty: A term that is a part of a black women’s everyday vocabulary. Why is it that in the “Beauty World” women of color aren’t mentioned?
Now why is that? Well, high-end cosmetics companies have yet to make products that are compatible for women of colored skin tones. The foundation shade range either doesn’t run to your color (they usually stop at 8 shades and it tends to be more fair skin tones than dark), or if they do have darker tones it jumps the in-between colors.
It is as if they don’t know that black skin has more than three shades. Women of color shades run longer than a 5K. Mind you, depending on the season your complexion may differ a shade or two.
So why is it that the beauty industry doesn’t find the need to create a shade that fits every women of color?
One might think this is a petty argument. And if they think that then they’re obviously oblivious to the real situation at hand. Why is it that women of color cannot have a simple shade of foundation that is 90% close to their natural skin tone? Why must they choose between looking orange or ashy? Why isn’t the beauty industry recognizing this dilemma?
I’m a nineteen-year-old college student playing Russian Roulette every time I step into MAC or Sephora. I should just be able to walk to the Dior cosmetics section and find a foundation that I feel comfortable wearing in everyday life, besides just on Halloween.
But no, there is always another quandary at hand.
In 2006, Village Voice wondered, “Has the Cosmetics Industry Really Come to Recognize Women of Color as a Target Audience?” or in 2014, the New York Times published “Makeup That Addresses the Many Shades of Women” an article about how the beauty industry is recognizing the concerns women of color have.
Why must everything be a revolution? Why couldn’t cosmetic companies create shades that match the complexion that women of color have? Why must one complain about a situation for it to be changed?
Did they think women of color don’t want to cover their blemishes, are the blemishes that white women have more noticeable?
Did they think that black women don’t want to feel more beautiful? Or be apart of the beauty world? Do they want to experiment with eyeshadow?
Or is that just a white woman thing? Is that only a part of their culture?
Black women deserve to walk into any MAC or Sephora and feel comfortable, prideful, and that heart is spilling over with satisfaction for how good they look. They should find a foundation that fits them, and wear that foundation without regret towards themselves. I think every women of color should feel that way… don’t you think so?