Black Women’s Guide to Beautiful Skin

Mocha, caramel, almond—black women’s skin comes in many decadent shades. All of which call for proper sn care and pampering. While it has been said that black doesn’t crack, having a great skin care routine is a must if we want to ensure that our skin withstands the test of time. Today, I’ll share everything black women need to know to achieve and maintain beautiful skin.

A good skin care regimen should have six basic components: cleansing, toning, nourishing, exfoliating, moisturizing, and protecting. Each component lays the foundation for the next and work together to provide everything your skin needs to thrive.


Beautiful skin begins with proper cleansing. Makeup, dirt, and pollution can clog our pores and cause our skin to age and become dull. Properly cleansing the skin rids it of debris and impurities.

When cleansing your skin, it is necessary to use a product that works best with your skin type. For normal to oily skin, I recommend Cetaphil’s Daily facial cleanser and for the ladies with dry skin Cerave Hydrating Skin Cleanser works wonders.

You can work in the cleanser of your choice with your fingers or you can use a brush like the Clarasonic Mia or Olay Pro-X Facial Brush to give your skin a deep cleansing. Lastly, always cleanse your skin in the morning and before bed. Never, ever go to bed with makeup no matter how tired you are. Every night you sleep in your makeup ages your face 15 days.


Nourishing your skin with masque is a must.


After your face has been properly cleansed, it’s time to move on to the toner. There is a ton of confusion surrounding what toners are, and what they are used for. Simply put, toners are used to restore your skin to the proper pH balance after it has been cleansed. The best pH for the skin 5.5. Apply the toner of your choice to your face with a cotton ball and allow to fully dry before moving to the next step.


Nourishing your skin is an absolutely must. A great masque will help you do just that. Not only does it help to remove dirt and impurities trapped in your pores, but it also provides vitamins and nutrients that help your skin look its absolute best.

A masque should be used 1-2 per week and should be applied after your cleanser and followed by a toner.


Exfoliation is an important part of any skin care regimen. Did you know that our bodies shed up to 50,000 skin cells per minute? Yes! You read that right— 50,000 per minute! And sometimes those dead cells need a little help sloughing off. Exfoliation not only helps to remove those dead cells, but is also great for getting rid hyperpigmentation and evening your complexion. Experts suggest exfoliating your skin 1-2 per week using a product that will remove cells gently.

Contrary to popular belief, exfoliation should proceed cleansing and toning. This way, all of the dead cells are removed and your skin is ready to be cleansed and pampered without any restrictions.


Moisturizing your skin is one of the most important components in your skin care regimen. When choosing a moisturizer, pick one that is oil-free and non-comedogenic (this means that it will not clog your pores). A great moisturizer should have vitamin A as well as Vitamin B5. These vitamins increase the firmness of your skin and also work to keep its moisture levels up. Skin should be moisturized two times per day—upon waking up and just before bed.


One of the biggest enemies to beautiful skin is damage that is caused by UVA and UVB rays from the sun. No matter what the season, we must protect our skin by wearing sunscreen daily. You can choose to wear a moisturizer with SPF 15 in it, but that’s not enough. Opt for a SPF that is between 30 and 50 and has broad-spectrum sun protection to ensure that your skin is properly protected from the sun’s harmful rays.

These six components combined form a great skin care routine that will keep your skin looking amazing for many years to come.

African Influence in Fashion

Fashion is a 400 billion dollar industry in the US. Well-dressed celebrities like June Ambrose, Solange Knowles, and Tracee Ellis-Ross help to fuel the fashion obsession that helps to keep the sell of clothing and accessories on the rise. To many, European influence is what seems to be the cornerstone of the fashion industry. Because of this notion many people fail to see the African influence on many of the fashion trends we love and wear every day. Let’s be honest, anytime the word “African” is mentioned in a conversation about fashion, thoughts generally go to clothing or accessories made with “tribal” or “ethnic” fabric. Contrary to popular belief, African influence goes far beyond kente cloth and shells. While tribal-themed apparel is all the rage, that is not Africa’s only influence on fashion. Beyond the fabric, the African influence brings us vibrant, well-constructed designs that keep fashion lovers wanting more.


Briana McCarthy

Korto Momolu designs

Today, designers from across the globe have made their marks in fashion, bringing with them the beauty of African culture. Let’s take a look at some designers that are helping to bring African culture and style to the forefront of the fashion industry.

Korto Momolu

Korto is a Liberian-born designer whose talent landed her a spot on season five of ‘Project Runway’. Her designs are clean yet bold. The African influence in her designs shine through her garments in her vibrant color choices, rich fabrics, and the movement of each garment.

As if designing fabulous garments wasn’t enough, Korto has also branched off into designing eco-friendly fine jewelry and launched her own line “Green Love” at New York fashion week in 2011.


Briana McCarthy

Samilia Colar

Samilia Colar

Samila is a Nigerian designer based in Memphis, Tennesee. She intertwines her rich Nigerian culture into her famous handbags and accessories. Known for her use of color and handcrafted designs, Colar has set out on a mission to provide pieces that are attractively unique, smart, and beautiful—and from the looks of it, she’s done just that.


Briana McCarthy

Fenix Couture by Josephyn Akioyamen

Josephyn Akioyamen

Josephyn Akioyamen is a Nigerian-Canadian designer that certainly hasn’t forgotten her roots. Through her line Fenix Couture she embeds African influence into her designs using both color and texture. Her garments are described as “ easy to wear, versatile, feminine, luxurious and subtly sexy.” Akioyamen’s ready-to-wear line was born in 2009 and has been making waves in the fashion world ever since.

As you can see, African influence in fashion is alive and well. And it will continue to thrive through designers like these and a host of others that are making their mark on the industry.