Shades of Beauty: A Brief Journey through the History of Brown Skin Makeup

Shades of Beauty: A Brief Journey through the History of Brown Skin Makeup

One of the things the Diam Beauty team is most proud of is being able to launch brown girl friendly colour ranges. Today, we celebrate the beauty of every skin tone, but the history of makeup for brown skin has not always been as inclusive. Join us on a brief journey through time as we explore the fascinating history of brown skin makeup, from ancient civilizations to the modern-day embrace of diversity in beauty.


Ancient Beginnings:

In ancient civilizations, makeup played a pivotal role in cultural rituals and aesthetic expression. From the rich hues of Mesopotamian kohl to the intricate designs of ancient Egypt, people with brown skin were early pioneers in the art of adorning their faces.

Historical Challenges:

The history of brown skin makeup has faced challenges as societal norms and beauty standards shifted. European influences often perpetuated the notion that fair skin was the epitome of beauty, leading to limited representation and accessibility for those with darker complexions.

Cultural Influences:

Across the globe, diverse cultures have celebrated and embraced the beauty of brown skin. From the vibrant traditions of South Asia to the rich heritage of Africa, makeup became a symbol of cultural identity, with unique pigments and techniques that highlighted the richness of brown skin.

Golden Age of Hollywood:

The Golden Age of Hollywood presented both progress and setbacks for brown skin representation. Icons like Dorothy Dandridge and Lena Horne broke barriers, but the limited availability of makeup for darker tones remained a challenge. In response, pioneering makeup artists like Max Factor worked to create formulations that catered to a broader range of skin tones.


Revolution in the '90s:

The 1990s witnessed a significant shift in the beauty industry, marked by the emergence of supermodels like Naomi Campbell and Tyra Banks. This era saw a surge in makeup brands recognizing the importance of diversity, with expanded shade ranges that acknowledged and celebrated the beauty of brown skin.

The Modern Renaissance:

Today, the beauty landscape is undergoing a transformative renaissance. Influencers and beauty advocates are challenging outdated norms, calling for inclusivity and representation. Makeup brands are responding by creating extensive shade ranges, ensuring that everyone, regardless of skin tone, has access to products that enhance their unique beauty.

The history of brown skin makeup is a story of resilience, creativity, and the celebration of diversity. As beauty standards continue to evolve, the industry is moving toward a more inclusive future, where makeup is a form of self-expression for everyone, regardless of their skin tone.