Brown Girl Beauty: Back To The Future And Beyond


image courtesy of

Brown Girl Beauty

"Back To The Future And Beyond" by Dre Brown

I bet Michael J. Fox never thought he'd ever be associated with brown girl beauty, but as I think about what lies ahead for sistas and our hair, skin, and makeup evolution, I keep recalling his popular '80s film series. Could what's to come for brown girls really take us "back" to the future? Seeing the seeds planted recently for women of color and our beauty interests, I'm convinced that our future harvest will be one reminiscent of decades of tried & true fabulousness. From the continuing rise of the "natural" to the resurgence of pastel lips and lids, we're likely to see more carbon copies of Angela Davis and and Diana Ross than robotic high-tech hotties.

One of the buzzy-est forecasts authorities are touting now is the return to "retro" coiffs. Sistas rocking their natural curls will soon be empowered to "fro" their locks, while those playing the silky side of the trend may opt for buns, waves, and big curls. Other predictions suggest future looks for sistas will prove style-forward as long as there's texture—from messy coils to gently tousled and teased blow-outs and weaves.

The crowning glory won't be the only facet of brown beauty touched by a bit of nostalgia. With fashion unveiling lots of fun florals and flirty feminine tones for coming seasons, brown girls will get to dust the eyes and glaze the lips with soft shades like lilac, rose—even mint-kissed pouts! Sheer glosses will soon slide over as bold opaque pigments take center stage.

Some brown girl style psychics also predict the rise of au naturale from underdog to top contender. As sista skin care advancements allow for improved radiance and relief of traditional complexion challenges, more brown girls are sure to embrace a wash-and-go approach to their everyday beauty routines. Behold the brown and bohemian.

Lastly, trendsetters are carving out new posts for the next wave of brown girl beauty icons. Ironically, those gaining the most attention appear to know a thing or two about going "back to the future" when it comes to beauty. Singer Estelle's starlet-esque persona, classic style, and retro elegance have fans eager for more of her in the years to come. Model Jessica White's balance of boho and glam have her serving up nostalgic style on all fronts. And, actress Freida Pinto's makeup minimalism and radiant brown complexion offers a refreshing return to classic simplicity.

So, though Marty McFly may not have had a clue about how his epic journey could shape reality, his notion of revisiting the past to shape the future has sure carried some weight long after his film's 1985 debut, especially when it comes to beauty for us brown girls. So, as you prepare for 2012 and beyond, take a trip in your own DeLorean to craft your neo-nostalgic look. Godspeed time travelers! 

Dre Brown's Soft Shade Picks:
1. Lime Crime lipstick in Mint To Be

As perfect a match on deep brown skin as mint & chocolate, this statement lip color is soft, but far from subtle. Trust me.

2. Bare Escentuals Lip Color in Bavarian Creme

A retro mod pink that's sure to make a statement against browner skin.

3. Benefit Coralista Face Powder

Gives a peachy pop on cheeks or lids and warm enough to play nice over golden tones.

Driven to infuse each encounter with joy-inducing laughter, Dre Brown seeks to offer those she reaches both something for the eye and for the soul. Based out of New York City, Dre splits her time between makeup artistry, hair styling, strategic marketing, writing and entrepreneurship. Follow her exploits on her blog: a Dre in The Life and her Beautylish series "Confessions of a Nouveau Natural Woman"

Featured Products

Featured Brands