Dark Skin Tones: How Darker Skin Differs From Other Skin Tones

As a skincare expert with over 2 decades of experience, I’m often asked what, if any, differences there is between dark skin tones and white skin tones.

I spent many years studying all types of skin in order to develop a capsule collection of skincare that delivers proven results to all skin tones  and all skin types.

So, what are the differences? Dark skin tones have thicker and tighter dermis than lighter skin tones, which means black skin generally shows slower signs of ageing in the form of facial lines and wrinkles. Darker skin tones also retain a higher level of hydration in the skin.

Black skin has 50% lower ceramides than white or Hispanic skin tones. Ceramides are the fats that contribute most to skin hydration playing a vital role in structuring and maintaining the water permeability barrier function of the skin. These higher levels in dark skin tones provide a barrier against the movement of water and electrolytes, retaining more moisture in the epidermis than lighter counterparts.

Vitamin D and dark skin tones

The darker your skin the higher your skin’s tolerance to UV rays. Dark skin has a natural SPF of 13. However, the trade off is that dark skin absorbs less Vitamin D.

Why is black skin more prone to scarring?

Black skin has a higher level of desquamation (increased shedding of its outer layers). The increased levels, size and multi-nucleated (two or more nuclei) fibroblasts in black skin can make dark skin tones prone to abnormal scarring and keloid formation.

Why does black skin show slower signs of ageing?

The epidermis of dark skin contains five more layers of skin than white skin. Black skin also produces more sebum around the hair follicles for more acidic skin able to protect skin more effectively from premature ageing, hence why fine lines and wrinkles are typically less visible on black skin.

Additionally, darker skin has thicker and stronger cells, and the ability to maintain higher levels of moisture. The increased desquamation (skin shedding) in dark skin tones reveals more radiant glowy skin rather than the dull and matt complexion often associated with lighter skin tones.

Due to the increased shedding of skin, frequent gentle exfoliation is vital to reveal that gorgeous glowy skin without irritating and scarring the skin. Use Luminous Light 4-5 times per week during the summer months. Repair sun damage, detoxify and rejuvenate skin with my 7-in-1 multi-tasking miracle Mask Supreme and nourish skin whilst reducing blemishes, scarring and pigmentation with Radiant Light.

Cover Image Credit: J. Hannah Jewellery

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