Category Archives: African Beauty Tip

Hair Care Tips for the African American Woman

Hair care for the African American woman can be a challenge due to the fact that most hair care products are meant for Caucasian hair. All is not lost, however, as there are many tips women can use to keep their tresses and scalps healthy and beautiful.

The first thing is to determine what type of hair you have. African American women tend to have hair of varying types due to ancestry. Some types are soft and curly, others are more kinky while there are some types that are straight. Regardless of texture or length, African American hair is beautiful and needs special attention to remain so.


Due to the differences in texture of black hair, it needs moisture but some types need more than others. The coarser, kinkier African American hair needs much more moisture. The first thing to do is to use shampoos that replace natural oils in the hair. Natural oils like Shea butter or coconut oil are good for moisturizing the scalp.

Using a leave-in conditioner that moisturizes is advisable for African American hair. This helps strengthen the hair and keeps moisture in. It also helps to give hair sheen and makes it more manageable.

Washing and Drying

When washing the hair, care should be taken to avoid excessive pulling and tugging on the strands. A wide toothed comb should be used to gently comb through the strands when conditioning to help make it manageable when dry. Conditioning is a necessity for African American hair.

Do not rub the hair with a towel to dry it. Instead, it should be gently blotted so as to squeeze out excess water.

Note: To maintain moisture, African American hair doesn’t need to be washed more than once per week.


One of the most important and yet overlooked aspects of hair care for women regardless of ethnicity is nutrition. There are many nutrients in food that help keep hair healthy. A diet rich in fruits, vegetables and nuts will provide a lot of what hair needs to remain healthy.

Drink lots of water as well. Water is as beneficial to your hair as it is for your skin.

Other Tips for Caring for African American Hair

There are lots of ways to care for your hair. Some of these include:

  • When choosing hair care products selectthose that are specially formulated for black hair.
  • Sleep on a satin pillow case to help prevent hair from splitting or knotting up. Alternatively, use a satin or silk headscarf to cover your hair before going to bed. Cotton sheets and pillow cases also tend to remove moisture from your hair.
  • Avoid using grease such as Vaseline or other types of petroleum jelly. This type of oil clogs the pores which results in loss of moisture to the hair.
  • If your hair is natural, keep a bottle of water close at hand to mist it so as to help maintain moisture.
  • Only natural bristle brushes should be used on African American hair

Although the belief that African American hair is strong is still prevalent, this is not true. The hair of African American and other women of African descent is usually quite fragile. To add to the problem, chemically treating black hair helps to weaken it even more. When this is taken into consideration, the need to properly care for African American hair becomes even more important. Improper treatment will result in breakage and hair loss. Love your locks and spend time learning about the right way to care for your hair and it will love you back.

Black is Beautiful – 10 Tips for Perfect Skin

Up until only recently it was indeed difficult for women of color to find acceptable makeup and skincare products.  They were pretty much left to their own devices and making expensive purchasing mistakes because companies weren’t providing suitable products.

No longer true!  Cosmetic and skin care lines are now coming full circle and superb products in any price range can be easily found in CVS, Nordstrom and everywhere in between.

The good news is you don’t need to spend a fortune to look terrific.   If you happen to be on a budget (and who isn’t nowadays?) you can totally replace everything in your makeup collection for under $100 and get excellent quality, excellent results, and have products made with your skin in mind.

  1. All beautiful skin starts on the inside.  No makeup, no cosmetic surgery, and no expensive skin care line is going to do you justice unless you eat right and drink enough liquid.  Too much fat and sugar will cause breakouts.  Alcohol and smoking causes wrinkles.  Drink water, stay away from junk food, eat your fruits and vegetables, and you’ll see how much better your skin looks almost instantly.  Take a good quality multivitamin with lots of antioxidants, too.  The old saying, “You are what you eat” is very true when talking about skin care!
  2. Most ethnic skin is very oily and sensitive at the same time.  This means no harsh toners laden with alcohol.  Use toners specifically for sensitive skin.  A very effective alternative is witch hazel.  It provides astringent properties without drying.
  3. Use a gel cleanser morning and evening.  If you are actually one of the many women who don’t use a foundation during the day, you can even gently wash your face at mid day as well.
  4. Uneven skin tone can be a problem.  A good foundation in the right shade can correct the problem for a while, but to reduce the patches and splotches you will need a correcting night cream that has alpha or beta hydroxy.  Don’t use products that promise “fading”.  They work.  And you could end up with faded patches which will only cause more problems than you had to begin with.
  5. Get a good clay based mask and use it twice a week.  Stay away from masks made for acne prone or teenage skin.
  6. Exfoliate.  Your skin will let you know how often.
  7. Don’t waste your money on any product to reduce “the appearance of” pores.  Oily skin comes with large pores and nothing short of a professional chemical peel is going to change that.
  8. The trick with pores is to learn how to apply foundation to actually fill in the pores and achieve a smooth flawless complexion.  Tricky, but with practice, you too can look like a supermodel!
  9. Oily skin doesn’t do well with liquid foundation, even a matte solution.  After a few hours the oil comes through.  Add some heat and humidity and your flawless makeup application of 7 AM becomes a danger zone by lunch time.  If this is your problem, mineral makeup was made for you!  Unlike powder, mineral foundation has no talcum.  This is the ingredient that causes powder to “cake” and build up in tiny lines and, of course, pores.  The talcum mixes with facial oils and turns into something that resembles wet clay.  This does nothing to make us look good or feel good.  A good quality mineral foundation (yes, it looks like powder), when applied correctly, will last for hours.  Not only will it not cake, it will stay fresh, won’t change color, and you won’t need to keep “powdering” your nose all day long.
  10. Nowadays you have foundations that are formulated to counter the common yellow underlying tones in dark skin.  One of the major issues dark skin has always presented is that most foundations have a yellow base – the worst base possible for a skin tone that already has yellow in it.  Dark skin needs foundation that has a neutral or even a pink base.  If you aren’t sure what your underlying tone is, go to a large department store and have a free makeup consult or even a makeover.  The makeup artist is trained in how determine your tone and suggest the perfect foundation for you.

African Beauty

Beauty may be in the eye of the beholder but a woman’s ethnic and racial heritage also plays a role.  African beauty is unique and making the most of African beauty requires special attention.

Skin tones are vital.  All women know that certain colors flatter their complexion and personal color scheme while others do not.   Since the color palette and skin tone range for women of color ranges from light coffee shades to darker tones, it is important to choose the correct foundation.   Many African women and those of African heritage can choose a honey or gold base foundation.  Those with darker skin tones will find that a richer, deeper mauve or plum foundation best suits their beauty.  Some women will discover that it may take two different shades of foundation to blend with their skin because some women may find that their face has lighter and darker areas.

African beauty also requires the use of sunscreen and moisturizers.  Like all women, each must experiment to find the right products that work well with their individual skin but a good sunscreen is necessary for anyone spending time outdoors.

Once a flattering foundation color has been selected, enhancing natural beauty involves lipstick, eye shadow, and more.   Lighter lipsticks tend to enhance and narrow wider lips while bright colors like reds and hot pinks attract attention but can sometimes appear to increase lip size.  Shades that most often work for a large number of women include berry, bronze, purple and terra cotta earth shades.  Brighter, vivid colors like blues, rich greens, royal purple, and even pinks also work well for most African beauties.”

The sky is the limit when it comes to eye shadow.  Almost any shade works well with an African background.  More natural looks are achieved with browns, earth tones, deep greens, and metallic shades like gold, copper, or silver.

Blush is not always a beauty necessity for African beauty but those who desire to add a bit of color to their cheeks may want to opt for a plum, bronze, mauve or wine color.  Lighter skin African beauties may even look well with rose or a pink shade.

When choosing cosmetics to enhance African beauty, it is often wise to select products geared toward this particular market niche.  Cover Girl’s “Queen Collection” products were designed specifically for African beauty, as are Black Opal products and Maybelline’s “Shades of You”.

Each woman must experiment with available products to find the right look to enhance her own African beauty.  However, make-up and skin are just part of the overall look for African beauty.

Hair is another vital part of African beauty.  Contrary to popular thought, most African or black hair is fine and fragile like most naturally curly hair.  African hair weakens over time with commercial hair relaxers and other hair treatments.

To keep African beauty and hair at it’s’ best, the choice of comb and brush are very important.  The best comb choice is a wide-toothed comb, which moves easily through the hair without damaging it as narrow-tooth combs can.   If a brush is, needed – many African women have little need for a brush – it must be one made of natural boar bristle.

Use oils not grease to hydrate hair.  The best oils for African hair include natural ones including jojoba, shea butter, and olive oil.  Shampoos and conditioners utilizing these type oils are readily available.  Avoid the use of hair gels and mousse because both products tend to dry out hair for African women rather than enhance it.

Let a professional at a qualified hair salon cut hair and do any desired styling. The right cut and styling can make an amazing difference because African hair styling differs from conventional methods.  Treat hair monthly with a moisturizing treatment, use moisturizing shampoos such as Pantene, and sleep with a silk scarf over hair for the best results.

African beauty becomes more beautiful by utilizing products designed to enhance such beauty.  A little experimentation to find the right combination can make any woman’s African beauty all the more beautiful!

Enjoy a Luxurious Pedicure in the Comfort of Your Own Home

Any fashion-forward African woman knows that no summer wardrobe is complete without a few pairs of stylish sandals, but before you reach for those cute little lace-ups, make sure your feet are ready for their seasonal debut.  Although getting a professional pedicure is relaxing and has great results, frequent trips to the salon can add up fast.  This year, save lots of time and money by doing your nails at home.

With the right materials and a little creativity, giving yourself a luxurious spa pedicure is easy.  Prepare by gathering a towel and a small basin filled with warm water and body oil.  If you don’t have a container, you can always use the bathtub, and drug store bath beads make a great oil substitute.  The first step is to clean your nails using polish remover and a cotton pad.  Once your toenails are clean, soak your feet in the water for about 15 minutes.  The oil works to soften your skin, nails, and cuticles while leaving your feet with a fresh, light scent.

Remove your feet from the water and massage basic bath salt all the way up to your calves. Applied with light pressure, the granules will begin to slough off dead skin cells within minutes.  Rinse your feet, then grab your pumice stone.  Firmly rub the stone in small circles over any calluses or corns.  Some common rough areas for many women are the back of the heel and on the outside of the big toe.  The soles of your feet should be dramatically smoother after this part of the pedicure, but results will vary depending on the original condition of your skin.  Redness and soreness are signs that your strokes are too forceful, and you should stop exfoliating right away.  Dip your feet in the water one more time, and pat them dry with a towel.  Now that your feet are soft and clean, it’s time to work some magic on your nails.

While your skin is still a little damp, use a cuticle pusher to gently wedge each cuticle back around the nail bed.  Although it’s a specialized tool, the cuticle pusher is very inexpensive and looks like a short wooden skewer with a slanted edge.  You’ll find more advanced metal gadgets on the market, but the basic stick works just as well.  Next, trim your nails, simply going straight across with a toenail clipper.  You may be tempted to use a fingernail clipper, but the smaller blade will only create more jagged edges and more work for you.  An ideal nail length is just to the tip of the toe; toenails that are too long can become ingrown or cause snags on thin materials.  Smooth the edges with a nail file or emery board to create rounded corners.  After shaping your nails, apply moisturizing lotion to both feet.

Getting professional results with nail polish takes a steady hand and a little patience, but you don’t need much more to achieve an expert look.  First, separate your toes using either store-bought foam separators or by threading cotton strips through them.  Brush on a base coat, a special clear formula that fortifies the nail and smoothes out the surface.  Then, apply a thin layer of color to all of your toes and repeat the process, using quick, even strokes.  The secret to a lasting pedicure is the top coat, which you add at this point.  This protective coat prevents the polish from chipping and adds a brilliant shine for a high-quality finish.  Let your nails dry for half an hour before letting them touch other fabrics.

Anyone can follow these simple steps to a dazzling home pedicure, and all of the required items are easy to find and afford.  In fact, most drugstores sell foot care kits that include everything that you’ll need for one low price.  Cancel that trip to the salon, pamper yourself at home, and get ready to show off those summertime toes.

African American Skin Care – Dispelling the Myths About Sunscreen

We spend hours every week maintaining our beauty. Add up the time, you know it’s true. Hair, nails, make-up, grueling workouts at the gym, all to make us feel good about the way we look. Hour after hour spent in the bathroom grooming, plucking, covering and moisturizing as part of our daily routine. If your bathroom cabinet looks like most, there is an assortment of bottles, jars and tubes bearing a great similarity to a Mary Kay sales case, but less organized, of course. Just as we should, we pamper our skin to keep it silky and smooth, maintaining a healthy glow and slowing down the aging process. We use all manner of beauty products to keep our skin moisturized but one of the most important components of African American skin care for women is protection from the sun. All too often we neglect the use of sunscreen as part of our daily beauty regimen.

Whether you believe them or not, you’ve likely heard a number of myths about dark skin and the sun’s effects. A common misnomer is that darker skin has too much melanin to get sunburned or the darker you are, the safer you are from skin cancer. One popular misconception that we can likely pin on the retail industry is that coco butter keeps skin from getting darker and shea butter eliminates the risk of skin cancer. To put it not so delicately, this is hogwash! Although on average a woman with brown skin has a natural SPF of about 13, African American Skin Care for women should always include a barrier for protection from the sun’s harmful ultraviolet radiation. In fact, in addition to melanoma skin cancers, UVA and UVB rays from the sun can cause other skin damage such as chronic actinic dermatitis, premalignant lesions, age spots and photoaging.

So, with all of the time and effort we put into beauty care, it seems quite ridiculous to ignore this one simple addition to our regimen. All of the skin care products in the world, including the plethora of lotions in your cabinet are not going to protect your skin from sun damage. Based on the assumption that you do step outdoors, you are at risk. By adding this one simple element to your array of skin care products, you not only reduce the risk of damage to your skin, but studies have shown that new developments in sunscreen actually provide added aesthetic and cosmetic benefits for beautiful skin. Many of the newer sunblock formulas, especially in African American skin care products, contain minerals, antioxidants and plant extracts. Such ingredients contribute to the revitalization of skin cells to maintain healthy skin and even act as a mechanism for anti-aging.

You will be glad to know that the FDA requires clinical trials for sunscreen products to include darker skin. A variety of products are available that are specifically formulated with dark skin in mind. There are quite a few beauty care companies that specialize in the perfection and manufacturing of African American skin care products for women and nearly all of these offer a sunscreen in the form of a moisturizing lotion, gel, roll-on or spray. Look for a sunblock with an SPF of 15 or higher. Generally, the maximum SPF needed for darker skin is 30 unless you have a medical condition that requires higher SPF. The sunscreen found in most foundation wears off quickly, so apply a layer underneath makeup. Be sure to apply sunscreen at least 20 minutes before you step into the sun to allow absorption and reapply to your body after sweating or swimming even if the product says it’s waterproof. Go out and enjoy the great outdoors – just take care of your beautiful ebony skin while you do it!


There are many African beauty products on the market these days that aid in maintaining proper nourishment for skin and hair, however, obtaining information on how these products will affect us directly is just as important as considering which beauty line is best. A certain product may work wonders for one person, while another may find the product accomplishes absolutely nothing in achieving their desired results. With these items at our fingertips, we often become overwhelmed and make hasty decisions when searching for the correct African Beauty Products.

Chemically treated or naturally textured African American hair requires a significant amount of moisture to avoid dryness and breakage. There are many African Beauty Products providing moisture to dry, brittle hair. Below is a list of conditioning treatments you may consider for your daily hair-care regimen.


Provided by Dark and Lovely, and found at many of your local beauty supply stores; Dry Hair Healer is a cholesterol conditioning treatment with Shea Butter, similar to that from the fields of Africa. Vitamin E and Panthenol are also included. Ideal for color-treated, relaxed, and hair traumatized by heat, you will notice an improvement with each treatment after shampooing hair. Simply utilizing your heating cap for 7-10 minutes will restore and lock in moisture previously lost to hair.


Hydro Veil Hair Growth Oil is equipped with Green Tea, Vitamins A, D, and E. This soothing scalp treatment penetrates roots of the hair while stimulating growth. This treatment may be used daily or as you see fit to combat scalp dryness and irritation. Below are other Hydro Veil products to nourish and moisturize brittle, dry hair.

  • Moisturizing 2 & 1 Shampoo and Conditioner
  • Scalp and Hair Mist
  • Deep Conditioning Leave-In Treatment
  • Hair Thickening Cream
  • Restoring Temple Balm
  • Hair Strengthening Cream

Enriched with vitamins A, D, and E, all Hydro Veil products contain protein, wheat, and rice. With regular use of one or all products, Hydro Veil soothes and successfully treats most of your hair care problems, and are ideal for chemically treated and naturally textured hair.


Cold weather can be cruel to skin, causing moisture loss and discomfort.  Extremely hot baths and showers is also a culprit to skin dryness. The best way of combating dry skin is to utilize products enriched with aloe vera, cocoa butter, and vitamins A, D, and E.

African-American skin is usually oilier than normal, therefore it is best to utilize milk or foam cleansers. These assist in removing oil and dirt while locking moisture in. Products containing soy proteins, aloe vera, or shea butter provides elasticity and protection to facial skin during cold winter months.

For women who blemish easily, utilizing glycolic or citrus acid and cocoa butter will aid in the removal (exfoliation) of dead skin cells. Black Opal is one of many African Beauty Products made for combination, oily, and dry skin. Those who suffer from acne-prone skin will find relief from utilizing astringents and gels from the Black Opal line to aid in prevention and control of acne breakouts. Black Opal has been around for many years, and usually found in many beauty supply stores, CVS, and Rite Aids across America.

In addition to choosing the best product to fulfill your individual beauty needs, it is imperative to add other methods of improving and maintaining your outer beauty. Eating balanced meals enriched with green leafy vegetables, high proteins, and low fat items will aid in providing you with a healthy glow. Consuming fruits enriched with antioxidants are wonderful ways of preserving your youth and beauty. Taking care of you from the inside out is the most effective way of maintaining and improving overall beauty.

African American Self Esteem

Self-Esteem is More Than Image

What is Self-Esteem?

Self-esteem is so much more than just a mirror image. It is a consciousness, a way of being and living that has the power to devour and diminish or encourage and increase.  Many experts agree that self-esteem exists as what our unconscious believes to be true about how worthy, valuable, and capable we really are.

Where does this “belief” come from?

We may not realize that we speak to our unconscious with our thoughts.  Our mind and consciousness engage in conversation throughout the day.  When our minds reveal our thoughts to our consciousness, common conversations include, “I’m not good enough.”  “I’m not talented.”  Or, “I’m not pretty enough.”  In turn, our consciousness internalizes our negative thoughts and translates them through way of helplessness, worthlessness, and unwillingness to move forward.  Our minds are our greatest and sharpest weapons.    When we use our minds as weapons against ourselves, we become our own worst enemy; stifling our growth and sabotaging our futures.

Like the theory of self-fulfilling prophecy suggests, when we tell ourselves something over and over again, we start to believe it.  We often stand in your own way, blocking the light of our beauty from shining through to others.

Fellow African American Ladies, it is time to get out of our own way and let our inner beauty shine for everyone to see.   It is a New Year and it is time for a new me!  It is time for us to start saying and believing, “I am good enough.  I am talented.  I am beautiful.”  Positivity is the basis for which we can build an indestructible esteem.

I must tell you that increasing and maintaining a high level of self-esteem takes time and diligence.  It is a three-layered process that if consistently and correctly practiced, could raise not only a positive level of consciousness, but ultimately diminish feelings of hopelessness and increase feelings of self-worth.

Until we, as women of color, realize and recognize that we are settling for mere existence instead of aspiring to excellence, then we will continue to live our lives far below the potential that God has set for us.  We will continue to live our lives in discord from the bright futures our ancestors toiled and paved for us.

What if I told you that there is a way to increase and maintain a high self-esteem?  And that high esteem can be attained with the careful execution of a plan of action? What if I told you that this plan of action could increase your consciousness and help you live the lives you were destined to live?  Would you be willing to invest time and energy in yourselves if you knew that the end result would be indestructible esteem? Would it be well worth the journey?  Of course it would. So where do we start?

Start With SIS

We start with SIS.  SIS, you ask?  Yes.  SIS.  When we strengthen ourselves, we strengthen our SISterhood.  When we develop a Sense of Belonging, an Inner Purpose, and a Sense of Capability, we act as a model of hope for our African American sisters, daughters, and granddaughters to follow toward a path of great consciousness.    With 2009 coming around the bend, it is time for us to make a dramatic change and do something positive for ourselves and for sisterhood.   Because like Obama, “Yes, we can!”

Sense of Belonging

Finding others like ourselves and surrounding ourselves with those who exhibit the values and experiences we aspire to hold is the first step to finding and loving who we are and nurturing the person we want to become.   Finding a sense of belonging is at the core of building a strong and healthy relationship with our inner selves. It is the strong and healthy relationship with our consciousness that allows inner beauty to shine through to others.  Positive thinking is the foundation and primary source of positive energy.  Positive energy is the spark that ignites our inner light.  Inner light is the spotlight that highlights our natural beauty.  And natural beauty is the aura of energy that draws people in.

In the process of gaining African American self esteem, we stumble and fall then get back up and try again.  An essential part of growth, we stumble and fall until we finally find our way.  In finding our way, we are guided toward our purpose in this life.  When we find purpose, we find meaning.  When we find meaning, we begin to see ourselves in a positive light.

Inner Purpose

We spend our lives looking for our inner purpose never realizing that it lies latent awaiting our calling.  Our inner purpose would reveal itself if we would take the time to learn how to search within ourselves to find that inner voice that guides our steps.  Communicate this question of inner purpose between your mind and consciousness.  Ask God to reveal your inner purpose to you.  Mediate, concentrate, communicate daily and your purpose will be uncovered and discovered through the identification of your passion.

This is never an easy task.  In our quest to find our destiny, we must face trials and tribulations.  No one reaches their goal without trials.  Obstacles exist as the necessary growing pains of greatness.  These inevitable obstacles are steps that we must overcome to walk a little closer to the answer to our question, “What is my purpose?”

If we pray for guidance and walk with faith, not fear, God will walk us through the fires of our trials.  Faith is the fuel that promises an answer.  Faith is the promise that builds our African American self esteem.

When you find your inner passion or purpose, develop it.  Never stop working toward greatness.  Learn more about mastering your purpose each day.   Read an article, listen to advice from a master in your field, and surround yourself with positive people who will help push you forward.  Knowledge breeds success.  Success breeds esteem.  Know that we never reach perfection.  Instead, we are continually working toward becoming our best selves through plights and practice that serve as opportunities for tremendous growth.  In his poem, The Guest House one of my favorite mystic poets, Rumi, teaches us about the beauty that comes from hardship.  He reminds us,

“This being human is a guest house.

Every morning a new arrival.

A joy, a depression, a meanness,

some momentary awareness comes

as an unexpected visitor.

Welcome and entertain them all!

Even if they’re a crowd of sorrows,

who violently sweep your house

empty of its furniture,

still, treat each guest honorably.

He may be clearing you out

for some new delight.

The dark thought, the shame, the malice,

meet them at the door laughing,

and invite them in.

Be grateful for whoever comes,

because each has been sent

as a guide from beyond.”

[translated by Coleman Barks, The Essential Rumi]

Sense of Capability

When we realize that positive thinking yields positive results, accept that plights are opportunities for growth, and pinpoint our inner purpose, we begin to maintain the esteem that we toiled to gain.  When we realize our talents, we feel ourselves progressing, and reap the rewards of our efforts.  The more we reap the more courage we have to take risks and invite more success in; understanding always that our success is a result of our desire, dedication, and determination.

We will reach our goal and broaden our esteem.  Yet, our work will not be done.  Our work is never done.  We must continue to nurture our consciousness with positivity, seek our inner purpose with prayer and faith, and feed our success with risks and challenges.  When we master SIS, and consistently repeat its course, our esteem becomes infallible.

SIS, your stature, grace, and strength lie locked and latent under heavy loads of learned helplessness, crying to be free.  Unlock the door.  Set them free.  Allow them to help you become the woman God intended you to be!

Dark Spots on Face

How to Deal With Blemishes: Tips for African American Women

Black women the world over know about dark spots, skin discoloration and uneven skin tones – these are skin issues most are familiar with. Like most women, African American women hate these dark spots, which are also called hyperpigmentation.  While dark spots can appear anywhere on the body, dark spots on face are generally the greatest cause of embarrassment. Unfortunately this is something many black women face, but understanding the causes and learning how to eliminate them can help.

Causes of Dark Spots among Black Women

There are many factors that contribute to the appearance of dark spots on the faces of women of African descent. When skin is irritated it produces excess melanin at the area of irritation.  It is this excess melanin that shows itself as dark spots and discoloration. Some of the main causes of dark spots on the face, especially for African American women are:

  • Acne: this skin condition affects women of all ages and frequently leaves dark spots behind.
  • Allergic reaction to cosmetics, food etc
  • Hormonal issues
  • Insect bites
  • Cuts and bruises

Sadly in many cases it takes months and sometimes years for these spots to disappear or fade until they are no longer easily seen. For some African American women, the dark spots never go away – at least not by themselves.

How to Minimize Appearance of Dark Spots

There are many ways that African American women can try to deal with dark spots on their faces. The best way is to use products made specifically for that purpose. Some companies that make products for black skin that can work for spots include:

  • AMBI
  • Black Opal

Before buying any of these products, do some research and read reviews online.

In your quest to deal with dark spots these tips will come in handy:

  • Look for products that contain hydroquinone, benzoyl peroxide, kolic acid, hydroxyl acids, and glycolic acids. These ingredients have been proven to help discoloration to fade. Ideally, a dermatologist is the best choice for help in dealing with dark spots on face.
  • Products containing hydroxyl acid helps old skin to shed resulting in quicker turn-over of new skin cells. New skin cells would be lighter thus minimizing the look of darker areas.
  • Sunlight can and does contribute to dark spots, so using a good sunscreen is always recommended. Even for black women, a sunscreen with SPF 15 or higher is recommended. The sun is not a friend of dark spots, so protecting the skin against being burnt is always important.
  • Other treatment for dark spots and blemishes on the face of women of color include microdermabrasion or other forms of chemical facial peels. These procedures remove old skin that is on the surface of the face leaving behind fresh new skin.
  • Do not pick at scars left by acne or blemishes as this will only make dark spots worse.
  • Quick fixes include using makeup to conceal the spots, but this should not become the solution of choice. In fact, using too much makeup or worse yet, not removing it properly can aggravate the condition.

If the dark spots are really bad, a visit to the dermatologist is in order. The dermatologist will prescribe a course of treatment which may include a topical cream to apply directly to the spots.

With a little work most African American women will find that preventing or minimizing the appearance of dark spots on face is possible.  Knowledge is power, and as such African American women who want to prevent or treat dark spots should get as much information as possible to help them deal with this problem. The information provided above is a start.

Tips for Looking and Feeling Beautiful for Women of Any Race

Keeping beautiful is not all about makeup, but also about taking care of yourself and having a positive outlook on life. It is possible to keep both beautiful and healthy at the same time.


Exercise is the first and the most important way of taking care of you. Not just to maintain your ideal weight but also to improve your health. Exercising helps to reduce stress which not only ages you but also serves to drain your energy and vitality.

Exercise does not have to be hard and strenuous to be beneficial. Even gardening or walking can provide great benefits.


Eat a well balanced diet. Including lots of fruits and vegetables is recommended, especially uncooked. Raw fruits and vegetables have been proven to help fight against aging as well. It is believed that blueberries help promote collagen production so consider having a handful when you can.

Do ensure that you drink lots of water. At least 8 – 10 glasses are recommended, maybe more in a tropical or hot climate. Some fitness experts advise that drinking at least half your weight in water, in ounces, not only helps to keep skin healthy but assists in weight loss.

Also, to help your body flush out impurities squeeze some lime or lemon juice into a glass of warm water and drink this everyday. Taking a supplement is now part and parcel of the keeping healthy and looking beautiful generation. As a matter of fact, many cosmetic companies are now into the ‘beauty from within’ approach to beauty. As such many are now selling supplements that are said to help skin look better, or make nails grow stronger and longer.

Face Care

Before even looking at makeup, pay attention to how you clean your face. Many women wash their faces incorrectly. Don’t rub your face hard when washing, rather gently smooth the cleanser onto your face in a circular motion. Rinse off by splashing with cold water.

Obey the cardinal rule when it comes to wearing makeup – never sleep in it. No matter how tired you are, always remove makeup before going to bed. Your skin will definitely thank you for it.

Body Care

This takes in your entire body. To feel good about yourself you need to pay attention not only to your face and body, but also to your legs and hands.

Treating yourself to manicures and pedicures enhances your outward appearance and does wonders for your confidence and sense of wellbeing.

Hair Care

The belief that the hair of a woman is her crowning glory is true. Nurture and care for your hair. One of the most important rules of hair care is to cut your hair in a style that suits the shape of your face. For most women if their hair looks good they immediately feel better about themselves. Therefore getting a good haircut can make all the difference.

Taking Care of You

Finally, to always look and feel beautiful take special care with how you dress. When you dress to emphasize your best features and not only to look and feel beautiful, it shows. While dressing to feel beautiful, try to keep it age appropriate, for example, don’t go for very low tops if you are over 50.

Ultimately, looking and feeling beautiful comes down to attitude. Attitude here means feeling good about yourself and being confident. Looking and feeling beautiful definitely requires a holistic approach.

All of this may sound expensive, but it is possible to pamper yourself without breaking the bank. Go for natural products you can make in your kitchen if you have the time and are creative. Treating yourself to a nice soak in the bath using something you have on hand like lavender oil, is one way to go.

While we normally focus on beauty tips specific for African American women, we feel occasionally it is also important to look at women as a whole, and these health and beauty tips are beneficial to anyone.

Tips on Caring for African American Hair

Black hair, while appearing tough and strong is actually quite the opposite. It has been found that African American hair is rather fragile due in part to its tight natural curl. The fragility is increased by the use of chemical relaxers and other heat treatments, using the wrong hair care product and how it is sometimes combed.

For healthy hair, the African American woman must look at what products are used in the hair and what products are used to comb the hair. Taking care of African American hair, whether it is natural or processed, is a labor of love. Some of the issues associated with the hair of black women are that it gets dry easier, it is more prone to breakage, and some women of black descent complain that it is too short or kinky.

The best African American hair tips women should bear in mind when it comes to hair care are:

1. All brushes and combs are not created equal. The combs and brushes used by women of African descent can help to weaken their hair. African American hair should be combed or brushed with:

• With a wide tooth comb; fine tooth combs lead to breakage and unnecessary discomfort. The belief that all the hair caught in a fine tooth comb is dead is not so. Fine tooth combs snag and tear kinky or tightly curled hair.
• A natural hairbrush such as one made from boar hair if you like brushing, but brushing is not generally necessary for most types of African American hair textures.

2. Black hair needs oil, not grease, for moisture. This means that when buying moisturizing products for black hair look for those with natural oils such as jojoba, olive oil and shea butter. Avoid products with petroleum jelly, which is heavy and does nothing for African American hair.

It is important to ensure that the scalp of African Americans, both men and women, be oiled as well.

3. The use of lots of gels, mousse and other products that can deplete moisture should be avoided.

4. Use hydrating shampoos and moisturizing conditioners. You will need to experiment, as one shampoo does not work for every woman of African descent. Some good choices include Pantene Pro-V and shampoos from Motions.
5. Treat your hair at least once per month to help it maintain its health.
6. Forget the old way of combing your hair, instead of starting from the root down, start from the tip and move up. This means that you comb your hair in portions rather than pulling it down in one stroke. When you pull down in one stroke, this helps to weaken the hair from the root and results in damage to hair follicles.
7. Get a professional hair cut when you find it necessary. Some African American women are reluctant to cut their hair because it seems to take long to grow back, but for split ends and seriously damaged hair, a cut is the way to go. Remember that it is also easier to cut Black hair when it is wet rather than dry.
8. Always try to sleep with a satin headscarf on; these days wraps specially made for sleeping in are available. If you cannot get a ready-made satin wrap for your hair, buy a regular satin scarf and use that. Alternatively, sleeping on a satin pillow works as well. Sleeping on cotton pillowcases or sheets leaches the moisture from your hair, which leads to split ends and damaged hair.

Proper hair care is as important to the woman of African descent as for any other racial group – and for most women, their hair is their crowning glory. Learning how to care for African American or ethnic hair will lead to healthier, more beautiful hair.