Celeb Makeup Artist Tia Dantzler's 4 Must-Have Tips For People Of Color

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During a recent event at the legendary Pump Room in Chicago, people came together to celebrate the 40th anniversary of Fashion Fair, the equally legendary makeup brand for women of color. Guests sipped on specialty cocktails, sampled Fashion Fair products, and received personal makeovers by a team of the brand’s top artists, including Tia Dantzler. Dantzler is a go-to talent for both Jennifer Hudson and President Barack Obama, and was also just named Fashion Fair’s Creative Director. When we sat down with Dantzler at the event, she gave us the scoop on the line, and shared some personal tips for picking the perfect cheek and lip shades for dark skin.

“We literally have every shade under the sun that can work for a variety of skin tones—each with different textures and hue technology that defines color,” Dantzler says, noting the line is ranked #17 in the world for cosmetic products. Her favorite of the moment? True Finish Refining Mineral Foundation. “It works beautifully with individual undertones and gives a subtle sparkle.”

Dantzler is also a big proponent of playing with color, and offers these tips for finding your best shade for cheeks and lips.

1: Go with the trends. “Don’t be afraid to try something that’s of the moment, even if it means wearing a bright pink lip.” To make heads turn, we recommend Inglot Cosmetics Lipstick in 140 Cream, which gives lips the perfect amount of brightness.

2: Lip liner is your secret tool. “I use it to manipulate the overall lip color. For example, combine a light liner with a darker lip color and blend together. You’ll have a whole new palette.” Try it for yourself! We love Kevyn Aucoin Flesh Tone Lip Pencil in Minimal because it complements almost every complexion. Once you line your lips, apply Too Faced La Creme Color Drenched Lip Cream in Divine Wine and blend until you get the shade you're happy with.

3: Red is in season. “Oxbloods and burgundies have a dramatic effect for both lips and cheeks—and they work well on most skin tones.” One of our all-time favorites is Kevyn Aucoin Expert Lip Color in Blood Roses.

4: Pay attention to your undertone. Your cheek color will be more flattering if you match it to your undertone, says Dantzler. “If you have hints of red in your skin, look for dark colors like browns and reds; if you have a more yellow undertone, aim for light pinks with hints of blue.” Check out our guide for expert contouring, too.