Black Opal Cosmetics (Credits: Facebook)

Black Opal Cosmetics (Photo Credits: Facebook)

In a series of relatively shady Facebook posts dug up from earlier this month which have since been erased, Black Opal Cosmetics caught some serious heat.

Heralded for the longest as one of the top makeup brands for Black women (check the Google search results), most were surprised at the number of white women posted to their Facebook page in association with promo for their newest foundation shades.

“This must not be black owned or black women centered,” one user commented. “I thought Black Opal was geared more towards the women of color,” another user posted. Black Opal responded by saying that they never claimed to be black owned or exclusively marketed to women of color, but rather for every shade of beauty.

The thing is though, that while there truly is nothing wrong with being a cosmetics company inclusive of every skintone, black women today are still wondering why makeup brands haven’t made enough of an effort to expand their darker foundation colors. Most collections are chock full of options for ivory and olive complexions, but brands’ attempts to account for the numerous tones and melanin levels in brown skin are mediocre at best.

Who knows when Black Opal surrendered its position as the Black woman’s makeup brand? Did we automatically assume they were “for us” because of the ads we’ve seen with the brown skin beauty positioned perfectly beside a bottle of their foundation? Either way, please don’t associate Black Opal cosmetics with Black women because just like most makeup brands, “they’re for everybody.”





*Facebook comments have since been deleted.

Image Credits + h/t: Lipstick Alley


Update: A representative for Black Opal reached out to state that the promotional posts users were seeing were part of an ad campaign with specific run dates and that they didn’t delete the ads, but rather they stopped running due to the campaign ending. No additional comment on their Facebook responses to users upset about the ad campaign or the history of the brand though.

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  • I commented on that thread but I’m not saying where. Black Opal has lost a customer. You can be for everybody without Europeanizing yourself. Nice try. Funny, becuase makeup companies that are for “everyone” barely put black women front and center. When was the last time Revlon had a dark-skinned black brand ambassador? When I see makeup ads run by white companies you never see black women or you only see a flash of a black woman. If there is a black woman she is only the type that is mixed not the everyday black, bronze, and light skinned women we know. I’m talking about drugstore brands here since they are the most visible. You almost never see pictures of a dark skinned black woman on other companies social media unless they are really big. Damn! It’s hard to get pictures of Liya Kebede for L’Oreal! I can’t remember the last ad she did! However Black Opal is putting out the red carpet for white women. When Black Opal was called a brand for black women they embraced it, and never denied that. Now that they want to globalize the images of unmistakably black women have dissappeared in favor of mixed looking black women white women. Why now? You can’t just explain that away. Their responses were alienating and full of shaming. I am not ashamed to stand up for myself! Black women are loyal customers, and that is why we are treated like dirt. However our loyalty is due to scarcity so is it really our fault? White women aren’t loyal becuase every day there is a new makeup brand, and everyday there is a makeup brand that was once popular amongst lighter skinned women who are filing for bankruptcy. They have plenty of options. These hoes ain’t loyal! They are playing a dangerous game. Put the women in the forefront who have showed you nothing but love. Let them take the lead. The so called globalized faces (which ironically leaves black women out) can take a back seat. The same way we did. I love the two ads on the top juxtaposed against each other. It shows that they know what they are doing. I prefer the ad on the bottom.

    Another thing I wanted to mention is that Black Opal could totally go global becuase there is a serious lack of makeup worldwide for darker skinned women. Look at the L’Oreal, Avon, and Maybelline sites for India, and Brasil. Shameful. Black Opal could be a major global brand selling to dark skinned women everywhere. God knows India is in need. That is ths kind of globalization I’m for.

  • Ada Niemand

    Interesting. I’m glad you’re publishing this. I thought Black Opal was aimed at black women and I’m not the only one I’m sure.
    Iman has a makeup line, there’s always Fashion Fair, what others are there for us?

  • Argument, how the advertising is belittling: not the accused presentation many are confused? Okay, to exploit the audience this ideal cosmetics rather you say. Exclusive “heritage” line which going to bomb why lack participation why cartels have excellent sell market. Including everyone false assimilated: campaign which is insane I dislike this cheap quality makeup! Segregation of “ad” darker lower top Lighter shade you know the answer image appeal light bright delight since “Hip hop” thanks Beyoncé,Hallie and Dr.Dre what did I say by the way. Whiteness is “brightest” marketing appeal nothing more to reveal where is so called Black cosmetics? Marketing for Blacks” exclusively, lighter or brown bigotry still among us.

  • Anthro Pop

    Black Opal is Still Around??

  • pammy

    Are there any black owned cosmetic companies anymore??