Last November, content creator Nyma Tang uploaded a video of a makeup tutorial in which she wondered if she had finally found her perfect foundation match. By press time, that video has garnered more than 1.4 million views on YouTube. That’s because, after more than two years of trying different foundations, this South Sudanese beauty seemed to have found a makeup foundation that blended smoothly into her complexion without extraordinary effort.
In 2017, Tang, 28, launched her YouTube series “The Darkest Shade,” where she tests the darkest version of any given brand’s products. Though simple in its idea, the series immediately took off. That’s because Tang, who now lives in Dallas, Texas, speaks for a demographic that the beauty industry has struggled to cater to, despite recent efforts by makeup brands to diversify the ranges. Her series is a direct answer to brands that don’t consider the inclusivity of all shades in their makeup.
“I saw that there wasn’t anyone that looked like me in the YouTube space so I created it,” she tells OkayAfrica. “[I find joy in] seeing actual changes and progress being made in the industry and knowing I contributed to that.” Though her opinion is one that could make or break whether women will even try a product—she commands over 800,000 subscribers—she takes the responsibility of uplifting young women seriously, makeup aside. “I want darker skinned people to be well represented in any field. I want women to be more respected… If I could make everyone love each other I would,” she says. “People DM me daily telling me how I’ve made them or a family member realize that their skin is beautiful or how I’ve taught them to love themselves and feel represented.”
As her brand continues to grow, and she keeps fighting for the beauty rights of dark-skinned women all over the world, Tang wants to reach even more people with her platform. “This year, I plan to diversify my content… I might have a couple of things in store this year that I can’t wait for you to see or share.”