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Inclusion, in beauty, is still superficial and lazy

The Youthforia foundation's case shows that there is a long way to go

Inclusion, in beauty, is still superficial and lazy The Youthforia foundation's case shows that there is a long way to go

Inclusion (or the need for an inclusion that is sincere but also reasoned, sought, and concretely realized every day, constantly) also comes from beauty, make-up, and skincare. It's neither a secret nor a novelty. Just think about the colors and shades of foundations, concealers, and powders, as well as products for afro hair and more. It's an ongoing battle, one that black creators and influencers proudly fight, convinced that improvement is not only possible but also desirable, and indeed, extremely overdue. All true, and one can see it by looking at certain mistakes and slip-ups that still occur.

Youthforia's Black Foundation

It all started, as it often does, on TikTok. User Golloria - who has dedicated a series of videos to finding the most suitable foundation shades for black people with dark complexions - tried Youthforia's Date Night foundation in the darkest available shade, 600 Deep. Applying it, she realized live that the product is simply black. You read that right. Just black. Confirming this impression was Javon Ford, a cosmetic chemist, who also on TikTok explained how in the product in question there is only one pigment, CI 77499, which is a black iron oxide. This lack of other pigments and thus of nuances (which are present in other foundations of the line and help make a product adaptable to the skin and different undertones) makes it impossible to wear it alone or mix it with a different or lighter shade, as it would make each product gray. In short, a real flop.

@golloria

its biologically impossible to be PURE black. there is no pigment in this foundation other than pure BLACK oxide. this was not a mistake.

original sound - golloria

Inclusivity in Beauty: An Ongoing Issue

Golloria's video went viral, and online conversations about performative inclusivity and the laziness and superficiality of certain make-up brands ignited. Many online magazine articles followed, emphasizing once again the need to talk about it, continuously, in a tiresome and frustrating way: not only to achieve something but also to maintain what has been hard-won. It shouldn't be like this, and it shouldn't be just black creators putting their faces out there. It should be a shared struggle because inclusive beauty benefits everyone and disadvantages no one.

Words from Loretta Grace

We asked for an opinion on the black foundation from Loretta Grace, a beauty creator who has been fighting for the cause for years. Her words were clear and sharp, leaving no doubt about the validity of the operation. "Using black pigment to formulate a foundation dedicated to very dark skin types shows how much ignorance, laziness, and white-centric thinking there is in this industry. When it comes to studying our skin, there is always approximation; dark skin types have different undertones, warm, cool, olive, but black is not one of them. Many Italian cosmetic labs have the exact same problem," she said. "Frankly, I'm not surprised. On several occasions, I found myself on sets where professional MUAs used black eyeshadow to darken beige foundations in their kit, the result? A gray foundation unusable on dark skin. These episodes undermine the mental serenity of any individual, a content creator, an actor, a model, a singer, and it shouldn't happen anymore in 2024. Youthforia is the example that all make-up brands should not follow."