How to Choose the Right Foundation

Erica Wearing Iman Foundation

My name is Erica and I have spent about 23 years wearing foundation. I learned from my ancestors, who didn’t have foundations formulated for darker complexions, that too light a foundation makes you look unnatural. I am always determined to get the right shade. My 17 year old daughter, has some discoloration from teenage acne. We wanted to get her a non-irritating foundation with medium to full coverage.The week prior I purchased an Iman Luxury Moisturizing Lipstick in Black Brandy. I always try a lipstick in a new line I am thinking about using. If I like it I’ll try something else in the line. The pigment was rich, just like a woman of deep skin tone would want, and it felt luxurious and moist on my lips. So I suggested we shop for a foundation from the Iman Cosmetics Line.

We went to the local beauty super store yesterday. You probably have one in your town or city. They have aisles and aisles of products and a makeup lady who is just itching to give you a makeover. While picking out the color of foundation a sales lady suggested that we let the makeup artist color match my daughter, Ankobia. We were looking at cream-to-powder/earth-6, when the makeup artist whisks up beside us, startles me, and says very loudly, “Oh no. That is way too dark for her, you should try cream-to-powder/earth-2.”
Ankobia didn’t want  the makeup tested directly on her face because her skin is very sensitive and the makeup lady was using the tester that was on the display in the aisle. The makeup lady didn’t seem too happy about that, she wanted to put it all over her face, however, we wouldn’t budge on that issue. The makeup lady tried earth-2 on Ankobia’s neck up to the jawline. It looked like a light stripe had been painted on her neck. She tried another color, same problem. I asked her to try the earth-6. She was reluctant and said she knew it would be too dark but she would do it since I wanted her to. It looked like nothing had been applied, it was a perfect match on her neck and on the skin at jawline. The makeup lady seemed upset that the color matched, and said, “Well, keep in mind that the skin on her cheeks is lighter than the skin on her neck and around the sides of her face.”
Ankobia Wearing Iman Foundation
Now I knew earth-6 was a good match because it looked NATURAL. I also knew the skin on Ankobia’s cheeks takes up less space on her face than the skin on her forehead, jaws, chin, and neck combined. I explained to the makeup lady that she should keep in mind, that if we match for her cheeks then the other parts of her face and neck will be too light.

I noticed the lady had discoloration from acne as well. She had very fair, oily skin. Her foundation didn’t diffuse the dark spots at all, it accentuated the hyperpigmentation because her skin was so shinythe blemishes were highlighted. It looked like she was using a liquid foundation, which doesn’t work well on oily skin, after a while, it can look like it’s melting off. Hence, we were purchasing a cream to powder foundation for Ankobia, who also suffers from oily skin. While looking at the makeup lady, I couldn’t ignore how her makeup looked. The whole scene was preposterous. I thanked her for her time, and we exited stage left.

I explained to Ankobia that she should never take beauty advice from a woman that doesn’t know how to look her best. I reflected on how arrogant the makeup lady was. She clearly knew nothing about her own skin and yet she spoke like an absolute authority to women about their skin. Now I have a different perspective on why so many women with darker complexions look ghostly. The local beauty superstores have untrained, overly confident makeup ladies on staff steering them in the wrong direction. Beware!

Naphtalia Looking Beautiful

What we did: Purchased the Earth-6 Creme-to-Powder Foundation, Perfect Mascara in Black, and Perfect Eyebrow Pencil in Blackest Brown from IMAN’s collection. When we returned home, we tried the foundation and it was flawless on Ankobia. I have the same skin coloring, and I use it, as well. It worked perfectly over my moisturizer and primer by other manufacturers, too. There was no caking and when the day ended I still liked how the foundation looked. The mascara  didn’t clump. The eyebrow pencil went on nicely. The brush helped keep it natural looking and the color was very flattering on both our complexions.

Iman produces high-quality products, at affordable prices. Ankobia will try Iman’s Hyperpigmented Skincare Line. I will try the Dry/Mature Skincare Line.  My, 15 year old daughter, Naphtalia, will try the Normal/Combination Skincare Line. Thank you IMAN for creating a product line that I look forward to exploring with my daughters.
At Chocolate Bella we are committed to supplying honest advice and valuable resources to women of color who deserve to have their unique beauty and fashion needs addressed.  We look forward to sharing our unique perspectives on beauty with you.
Erica Ruth
©July 2012

Disclaimer: We are not representatives of Iman. We do not have an agreement to sell her products. We are mother and daughters who do not like the challenges we have finding products and advice that work for us. We are sharing the products that we have used and enjoyed in this blog. We will also point you to any educational resources that have offered us valuable advice. Iman happens to fit both categories. If you click on the links in the article you will end up at Iman’s site, which I repeat, we receive no compensation from Iman.


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