The makeup industry has never been kind to Black consumers. Despite the offerings you may see at Sephora now, shades darker than sandy beige are still hard to come by. 

The makeup industry was built under the guise of white beauty standards. Products were not made with melanin in mind. 

In 1973, the Johnson family, the publishers of Ebony and Jet magazines, launched the first national makeup brand that catered to Black consumers. Fashion Fair carried foundations, concealers, powders and other makeup basics, providing shades complimentary to our skin tones.

Although their launch was monumental in the Black beauty world, their offerings still weren’t as plentiful as white brands. 

Throughout the years, Black ownership in the beauty industry has boomed. 

Brands such as Juvia’s Place, Black Radiance and Beauty Bakerie led the way for representation in the beauty industry. Creating products that highlighted and nurtured melanated skin, offering color palettes that flattered our skin tones and even using models that showed the rainbow of shades Black consumers could be.

In 2017, Rihanna shook up the makeup industry by launching her Fenty Beauty line. RiRi offered over 40 shades of makeup and complementary products, leaving no one feeling unseen.  The singer-turned-entrepreneur shed a new light on a community that the beauty industry had forgotten for a while.

With the emergence of beauty influencers on social media, Black brands are now being amplified and acknowledged for filling a void. These brands have contributed to the evolution of the makeup industry and are empowering Black communities economically and creatively. 

Here are just some of the few brands changing the game regarding Black cosmetics.

Danessa Myricks Beauty

The beauty industry veteran created her own line of products that are multi-functional and created to work in multiple places and on all faces.


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Danessa Myricks (@danessa_myricks) • Instagram photos and videos

Ami Colē

Ami Cole is a clean beauty line with a variety of products. All the products are formulated with naturally-derived ingredients and made with melanin-rich skin in mind.


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Ami Colé (@byamicole) • Instagram photos and videos

The Lip Bar

The Lip Bar focuses on inclusivity and eye-catching colors that are flattering to all skin tones. The gluten-free and paraben-free beauty brand offers products in shades ranging from ebony to ivory.


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The Lip Bar (@thelipbar) • Instagram photos and videos

The Crayon Case

Social media influencer Supa Cent created the line specifically for makeup amateurs. The school supply theme offerings include vibrant shades for eyes, lips and the face.


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The Crayon Case Cosmetics (@thecrayoncase) • Instagram photos and videos

Shout out some of your favorite Black beauty brands below, and watch Blavity’s video as well:


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