The idea of looking dark-skinned is still fairly new to most people, and even though we’re only seeing the first signs of it, it’s a phenomenon that’s sweeping the world.
According to the International Dark Skin Association, there are roughly 8 million people living in Asia and Africa with dark skin, and that number is expected to grow by around 1 million people by 2020.
The dark-peaches and dark-blondes trend has been gaining momentum for years, but there’s one big problem: people with darker skin don’t have the same benefits that those with lighter skin have.
They tend to have less skin-whitening agents, and darker skin can be more prone to developing skin cancer.
While some of the darker skinned people have been using dark-skin products for years now, the new look can be tricky to get right, particularly in countries with darker cultures.
And it’s not always obvious what’s going on underneath the skin.
“People are going to be a little more hesitant,” says Natasha Scholl, a research associate at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases in Bethesda, Maryland.
“There’s a tendency for people to assume, ‘I have a fair skin tone, that means I’m naturally good-looking,'” she says.
“But I think it’s just a little bit of a cultural thing, that people just tend to think, ‘Oh, I’m just naturally good looking.'”
This new look, which has gained traction in parts of Asia, Africa, and Europe, involves getting rid of the excess skin.
In addition to applying a skin-reflective moisturizer, many people opt to use an eye cream to tint the skin, as well as a tinting solution like a black eyeliner or powder.
While the results are all pretty much the same, there’s a lot to take in.
“It’s really quite complicated to do it right,” Scholl says.
That’s because the makeup and the tinting can all be made with a different ingredient.
“You can have a lot of different ingredients, so it can be a challenge to get a good product that’s going to work on everybody,” she says, adding that it’s difficult to tell exactly what goes into the final product.
To help ease the process, the darker-skinned people have also been using tinting powders, which often contain chemicals like dimethicone, which is sometimes referred to as a “glow powder.”
However, there aren’t as many studies showing that tinting products work as well on darker skin as darker skin, so there’s no guarantee that using tinted products will actually help.
Still, a new study out of Japan suggests that dark-eye creams are effective at tinting darker skin.
The study looked at the effect of three different tinting creams on dark-looking people, who wore glasses and had to wear a dark-coloured hat to achieve the effect.
Researchers found that dark glasses and glasses with a dark shade tinted the eyes for about half of the subjects, and the dark shades in the creams worked for the other half.
This is especially interesting, since the study used a method that requires the wearer to wear glasses and not be able to see through the dark glasses, meaning that the participants weren’t blinded.
“That’s something we’d never thought of before,” says Dr. Shigehiro Ochiai, a dermatologist and director of the Cosmetic Dermatology Clinic at the University of Tokyo Medical School.
“This shows that tinted eye creams can be effective in dark-eyed people.”
It’s unclear how effective dark-colored creams would be for those with darker-than-average skin tone.
“We don’t know if the dark-tinted creams could be used on darker people, or if it would just result in more skin lightening,” says Scholl.
If you want to find out more about how tinted creamas work, Scholl suggests using a simple mask.
“The mask should be made of a thin layer of oil-based sunscreen or cream, with a little black powder in between,” she advises.
“Then it should be applied directly to the affected area and gently blended out, so that the tinted makeup looks as dark as possible.”
As for the darker looking, Scholls says it’s likely that people with lighter-than and darker-looking skin tones are going the darker route with their skin-tanning products.
“If they’re doing that, they’ll be using a darker product,” she explains.
But if you want a darkening skin-care product, you might want to steer clear of the “dark-eye cream” option.
“Dark-eye mask can be very irritating,” says Ochiac, “and it can cause acne.
That being said, I think that a dark mask is really important for people who have darker skin tones, and I