Make-up Tips for Woman of Color: Do’s and Don’ts for the Perfect Look
While it’s true that finding the right cosmetics is no longer difficult for women of color, there is another issue. Women of color; that is women whose complexions run the gauntlet from extremely light to extremely dark need to know that not every makeup style and technique will work for them.
Some areas where women of color need to pay special attention when it comes to makeup are:
This was once for many women of color the most difficult part of their makeup need. Women of color have so many skin tones and undertones that not just any foundation will work. Foundation must look natural, but for women who are not Caucasian finding one that matches their skin can be hard.
One trick is to buy foundation that does not contain titanium. This ingredient tends to sit on the skin giving it an ashy look. To find the right foundation, choose a color that is as close to your skin as possible. If the foundation disappears on your jaw line there is no need to look further as that is the color for you.
Whether you use your fingers or a sponge to apply foundation, make sure to blend it so there are no visible lines. Blend carefully under your chin/jaw line, behind your ear lobes, corner of your mouth and nose.
African-American women will find that two foundations are best, one for the darker areas of the face such as around the mouth and chin and a lighter shade for the rest of the face. However, they must be blended together smoothly.
Choose a powder that is close to your skin tone and brush lightly over your foundation to help it set.
- Rouge (Cheek Color)
Less is more when it comes to cheek color for women with darker skin tones. Nothing more is needed than to lightly brush cheek color of honey, apricot or caramel if you are light skinned, while purples are great for darker skin. Blush in the same hues as your lipstick can create a special look.
If you don’t want to use cheek color, then try some bronzer.
When it comes to lipstick, women of color can generally have a lot of fun. Many different shades and colors work well.
Use lip liners carefully so that there is no stark demarcation. To avoid having your lip liner showing too clearly, use one that is close in color to your lipstick, but a shade darker. When in doubt use a neutral color which will work with almost any color lipstick. Putting on lip liner after applying lipstick prevents having obviously lined lips when your lipstick has worn off.
Generally, dark shades give the appearance of smaller lips, so if you have really thick lips and want to deemphasize them go for darker shades of lipstick. The reverse is also true – to make lips seem thicker use lighter shades of lipstick.
- Eye shadows
Use two or three shades of eye shadow, use a dark shade on the eyelids (closer to the eyes) and then apply the brighter color below the brow line. Carefully blend the colors so that there are no visible dividing lines.
There are certain brands that have shades made especially for women of color regardless of hue. These brands include popular names such as Mary Kay Cosmetics, Avon, MAC Cosmetic, Bobbi Brown and CoverGirl. In addition, there are cosmetics manufacturers who specialize in makeup just for the woman of color such as Carol’s Daughter, Iman and Fashion Fair.
The most important advice when it comes to makeup for women of color is to go with your instinct. If you don’t feel that a recommended color works for you, trust your judgement – confidence is a big part of making your makeup work for you.