6 Skin-Care Brands for Women of Color We Can’t Stop Talking About
Although makeup has seen the beginnings of inclusivity industry-wide, skin care has yet to catch up. The absence of, well, color in skin care creates an assumed equity that isn’t so much false as it is misguided. Those with deeper skin tones have specific needs that aren’t always met by skin-care brands — whether that’s a mineral sunscreen that won’t leave a white cast, or a serum that addresses hard-to-fade acne marks — and it’s important for skin-care brands to formulate with those needs and skin tones in mind. Luckily, some brands have already started to realize the need for this and are either focusing solely on women of color or creating lines to address the appearance of skin. See a few of our favorites ahead, along with our product picks to start with.
Founded by medical aesthetician Rachel Roff, UrbanSkin RX was born of her experience in medical spas as a laser technician, where she realized that there wasn’t much education around the appearance of skin for darker-skinned people. This led her to open her own spa and eventually her own line, which offers a full-suite of skin care. One of the most popular products is the cleansing bar, which is formulated to give skin a brighter, glowier look. We recommend trying the Even Tone Cleansing Bar, an award-winning cleanser that improves the appearance of uneven skin tone and dark marks.
Shea Butter has long been a staple in Black skin-care routines, a fact Buttah Skin founder Dorion Renaud knows all too well. The brand’s Facial Shea Butter, is a smooth-textured butter that easily spreads and quickly absorbs into skin’s surface. It also leaves a noticeable, healthy-looking sheen — making it a must have for melanated skin, especially in colder, drier months.
We could all use a little luxury in our skin-care routine, which is where Epara comes in. The prestige skin-care brand is a collection of hand-crafted skin care products designed to address the skincare needs of women of color. Those new to the brand should try the Epara Cleansing Oil, one of the most affordable products in the line. It’s designed to make skin look more supple. In other words, it’s a melanated girl’s dream — and will make a chic addition to any vanity.
Dr. Barbara Sturm
To know Dr. Sturm is to love Dr. Sturm, at least among the beauty editor community. The German doctor is known for her anti-aging treatments and luxe beauty serums — as well as her Darker Skin Tones line, a favorite of some of Hollywood’s most youthful-looking black starlets. We recommend starting with the Dr. Barbara Sturm Darker Skin Tones Hyaluronic Serum. It will set you back a cool $300, but here’s why it’s worth it: not only does the serum encourage moisture retention on the skin’s surface through long- and short-chain Hyaluronic Acid, it’s also formulated with anti-aging and complexion-correcting ingredients that help add radiance to the skin.
Few brands have made a bigger impact on the natural hair community than Shea Moisture, a company that offers a full suite of products for every step of your routine. Although we can wax poetic about its standout hair-care products (hello Curl Enhancing Smoothie), we’re also big fans of the African Black Soap Bar Soap, formulated with shea butter, oats and aloe to cleanse skin without stripping its moisture.
Ayele & Co.
Instagram darling Ayele & Co. was founded by esthetician and makeup artist Danielle Bahi. Its Sunflower Sweets Serum (formulated with vitamin E oil, tea tree oil and jojoba seed oil) quickly became a social-media phenomenon, and it’s not hard to see why. With continued use, the serum refines the skin’s appearance to reveal a smoother, more radiant-looking complexion— check the hashtag #bahicosmetics for proof.