When the famed Dr. Barbara Sturm decided to launch a line of skin care products for darker skin tones, she got a lot of pushback from retailers. They didn’t seem to understand her passion for focusing on skin inflammation, a concern that often plagues many Black women and other women of color.
In Sturm’s first-ever live master class, which included participants such as celebrity makeup artist Sir John, designer Rachel Roy and Good American founder Emma Grede, the orthopedic doctor explained that her approach to treating skin concerns is rooted deeply in science, not specifically beauty. Sturm was interested in inflammation and what it does to the body and the skin.
And when Angela Bassett told the good doc that she changed her skin, Sturm was in disbelief.
“I was thinking, Oh my God, her skin is so amazing! What was there to change any way?” Sturm said. “But she was super amazed about the products.”
“We were talking and [Angela] said there’s probably a need for a catered product for skin of color. And I was thinking, Yeah, that’s actually true,” Sturm continued. “So I did a lot of research on it and I created a line for darker skin tones and skin of color. And it’s not just all my philosophical things like anti-inflammatory and hydrating, but it’s also catered to acne-prone skin, meaning it’s antibacterial, extra anti-inflammatory, and is also able to even out the skin tone in a very healing healthy way.”
While Sturm confirmed that the line is actually for all skin types, retailers were wary when it first launched. Perhaps putting the terms “darker skin tones” on a beauty product still turned people off years ago.
But the line, which had its four-year anniversary yesterday, has proved to be a skin savior for women with melanin-rich skin—just check the reviews and Instagram comments. The Face Cream Rich even won an ESSENCE Best in Black Beauty Award 2020 for Best Moisturizer.
“I put everything into this line, all my knowledge, everything,” concluded Sturm. “And my expectations for my skin care products are up there.”