Does Your Makeup Go With Your Tan?


summer beauty for sistas

"Surviving The Summer Shade Switcheroo" by Dre Brown

As a kid, I was an undisputed coloring champion. Forget just staying in the lines. I was, (at least amongst the handful of second graders I "battled"), a regular Picasso! Picking the right shade of green for my dragons and the perfect pink for my princess crowns was my secret weapon. Ahhh, how easy it was back then. If only grown-up color conundrums were so simply solved...

This summer, you've seen me preach my gospel of how "Chocolate Is the New Tan," so you know how I revel in the joys of getting golden. But, what happens when your new glow and trusty color compact fail to strike up a sweet summer romance?

I learned a long time ago that my fall-to-spring pressed powder and my rich chocolatey summer tan were far from the same shade. Considering this, figuring out how to accentuate my new complexion for the season, without investing in an all new palette, became my mission.

Finding my ideal foundation for most of the year took lots of trials and tests. So, going through the same process to find a match for my fluctuating summer tone never seemed worth the time and effort —as I often noticed my tan would change from one weekend to the next, depending on the "sunniness" of my social calendar.

So to my "lab" I went. Considering the carefree nature of summer, I looked for quick and light fixes for balancing my skin tone and adding complexity. Experimentation with face colors that played nice with my deeper skin tone gave birth to some of my now trusted tricks.

Color crisis averted! As summer rolls along, I confidently tuck my foundation away for fall. Coincidence that the space in my purse once occupied by my compact now snuggly fits a pack of crayons? I think not!

Princess crown battle, anyone?

Dre Brown's favorite summer makeup

1 bareMinerals All-Over Face Color in Warm Radiance

When the temps near triple digits, sweat and sun can leave your face melted on the nearest beach towel or cotton tunic. I opt for this sheer-tinted loose powder to blend and polish my deeper brown tone. Buffing this powder over my cheeks and T-zone gives my golden glow a boost with subtle shimmer, while the tinted base provides an even finish. It's also great for sweeping across collarbones and shoulders.

2 MAC Powder Blush in Pink Swoon

I found you can't go wrong with blush over darker skin. Adding a hint of plum or pink powder can mattify cheeks and temples with lighter coverage, while playing up a dynamic summer tan with a hint of color.

3 NARS Orgasm Illuminator

When the sun's down, I keep my tan popping under the stars with a few finger strokes of this pigmented highlighter on the bridge of my nose, cheekbones, and brow.

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"

Images courtesy of

Featured Products

Featured Brands