Not In My Color

Makeup industry labeling people of color as an afterthought


Natalie Eljamal, Staff Writer

When people walk into Sephora, their initial thought is taken over by all the overwhelming products they find around them. They don’t even think about the possibility that their favorite brand didn’t include their shade in their release. The fact that many brands only make predominantly white tones is showing that don’t care about darker men and women and how they’re not willing to put in a little more time to make more colors.

Recently, many makeup gurus have spoken up about brands not having shade variety. Backlash and repercussion filled Twitter, as many people were furious of their skin tone not being included. Makeup influencer Manny Gutierrez, also known as Manny Mua, Tweeted how he felt.  The fact that people aren’t realizing that shade ranges are an issue strikes some more anger. There are so many people these products have to get approval from before they are released, and the fact that no one saw this was a problem made people angry.

Controversial arguments were sparked up with the brand Beauty Blender and Tarte cosmetics. Jeffree Star and Nikkie De Jager, also known as Nikkietutorials, refused to review these brands and their products until they made more shades. They used their large platforms to speak up about this issue in the makeup society. Nikki specifically spoke about having a large platform and being able to share her feelings about this and hopefully make a change.

Beauty Blender came out with 32 shades, 23 of them being a similar fair shade and only nine darker shades. There needs to be more shades to fit colored people in their undertones and in their shade as well.

Tarte cosmetics came out with the Shape Tape foundation which showcased 15 shades, sadly only two of those being dark shades. People argue that they shouldn’t complain because there are dark colors, but what it seems like is that they are labeling darker people at a lesser value and as an afterthought to the makeup industry. Why are the shades predominantly white?

At Fenty Beauty’s first launch, they had included 40 different shades, which were far more inclusive than the Tarte and Beauty Blender release. Fenty was one of the first brands to make such a wide variety, especially at their first launch. Their product go in depth with people’s many different undertones and skin type. People praised the brand and therefore, they benefited at not only selling more products, but building a better reputation and making a change in the makeup world.

An idea for a new YouTube video, James Charles went to the Colourpop factory to see how to create makeup. Starting out with foundation, he learned how to make different shades, realizing how little time and effort it took to make different shades. He talked about how brands have no excuse to not make more color inclusive shades.

It’s hard for people to go to a makeup store like Sephora or Ulta to find that they are not included in their store. It’s almost like an insult and makes them feel like less of a human. We know it’s not time or money because James Charles proved how much time and money it takes to make a shade, which he featured in his latest YouTube video. When Tarte was questioned about their shade range, they responded with saying that people wanted an early release and they were still going to release more colors. Many people think that this wasn’t true and they were just saying that so people would keep buying their products. YouTubers stopped taking endorsements from brands with poor shade ranges to prove a point, that they needed to include a more inclusive range.

While yes, some brands are good about keeping their consumers in mind, other brands are making laughable shade range that isn’t very thoughtful of their consumers. People are color should not be an afterthought to companies as they are humans, too.