Finding the right lipstick shade is tricky, but even more difficult for woman of colour-is finding the right shade of foundation.
Until recently, when award winning artist Rihanna released an “inclusive” makeup line called Fenty.
The inspiration behind the line, Rihanna says on her site, is “so that women everywhere would be included.” And inclusive it is, as the range consists of 40 different shades of foundations for people with pale or dark skin, which is unlike any other makeup line in the market at the moment.
Candisty Lundall, a hair and makeup artist based in Cape Town, and co-owner of The Make Up Issue, a beauty school, says the makeup industry has excluded woman of colour over the years, “especially for corrective makeup and foundation.”
“Most brands have incorrect undertone in their foundation colours that they have for women of colour,” she says.
Undertone is the colour beneath the skin, and the various colours are red, yellow and blue. Although two people may have the same skin tone, they are able to have different undertones.
Lundall, who’s been in the makeup industry for eight years, says this was one of the battles makeup artists had to face, and some would shy away from doing makeup on darker skinned clients “because of the fear of going grey on the face”.
“The makeup industry have evolved in its entirety,” says Lundall. Products like Bobbi Brown and Black Up have forced other brands to step up their game. However, she says Rihanna’s Fenty Line “has tapped into a niche market” by creating a product for women of [all] colour(s).
Founder of Love, This Skin, a non-profit organization aimed at helping people with albinism connect, educate and heal, Sethu Mbuli (23), says “as a black woman it’s cool to see Rihanna entering the industry where there are few women of colour actually doing it”.
Referring to the line, Mbuli feels that “she was very intentional about it [the make–up line] being diverse”. – Tembisa Mguzulo