Since skin tones vary greatly among women of African descent, finding the right face makeup can be tricky. The wrong makeup can lead to an ashen or flat complexion, but with a little insight and a lot of experimentation, you can minimize the guesswork and put your best face forward.

Things You'll Need

Look beyond your skin’s color and examine its undertones. Rich ebony complexions usually have cool, almost blue undertones, while brown and caramel complexions have warm golden undertones.

Choose from shades that appear to be in your color range and may complement your complexion’s undertones. Remember that foundation will look different on your skin than it does in a bottle or on a thumbnail palette.

Consider lines that specialize in black beauty products for the widest color selection. Always try foundation on your jawline or the inside of your wrist to get the best idea of a color match.

Set your makeup with a loose translucent powder. If you’re blessed with a flawless even complexion, skip the foundation and opt for a tinted moisturizer or tinted powder over bare skin.

Contour your cheekbones with a sweep of blush. Plums, currants and mauves will flatter a medium to dark complexion. Caramel, honey and apricot will complement a medium to light complexion.


  • Bronzer is an alternative to blush for those with a warmer complexion. Dust a light coating over the face, contouring at temples and cheekbones.

  • When faced with uneven skin pigment, consult a beauty expert for suggestions on a foundation that will even out your skin tone. You may be a candidate for two colors, that when spread over the right areas, will render the uniform look you desire.

  • Think about your skin type when selecting a face makeup. Oilier skins do better with water-based liquid foundations and cream blush, while drier skins benefit from cream formulas.