This is a dry-textured pressed powder with the kind of dispenser that shaves off a thin layer of powder at a time. Although the design is clever, the powder simply isn’t up to the task and it crumbles easily, which means you’ll get uneven application or streaking as small globs of powder get in your brush and then transfer to your face. The sheerness of this powder means that mistakes will be manageable, but powders shouldn’t be this much work or this messy. Even more disappointing is that the shades are not nearly as impressive as the others in Iman’s line. If you want powders for dark skin tones that are truly second-to-none, M.A.C. has far better options for only slightly more money.
Mica, Isopropyl Palmitate, Diisospropyl Dimer Dilinoleate, Magnesium Stearate, Methylparaben, Dimethicone, Allyl Methacrylates Crosspolymer, Propylparaben, Silk Powder, Zea Mays (Corn) Oil, May Contain (+/-):, Titanium Dioxide, Iron Oxides
The skin-care collection from Iman isn't nearly as comprehensive or helpful as the makeup. It is clear from the inconsistencies that Iman (or the people who created her line) is not up to speed on several key skin-care issues, not the least of which is sun protection. There are a few winners in the skin-care selection, but far more disappointments than there should be, and that weakens things overall.
For more information about Iman, call (877) 367-4626 or visit www.imanbeauty.com.
Iman's makeup debuted in 1994 and at the time was a formidable collection of products built around the needs of women of color, whether of African-American, Asian, or Latina descent. Although that is still the backbone of the line, the products haven't received much attention since the previous edition of this book. As a result, many of them have fallen behind by not keeping pace with formulary advancements, including newer pigment technology.
The foundation shade range remains decent, but the formulas are severely out of date, especially noticeable in the area of inadequate sun protection. Reasons to shop this line (if you can find it, but we'll get to that in a minute) are the silky-smooth face powders and the densely pigmented eyeshadows and lipsticks (though the lipsticks aren't for anyone prone to feathering, and the lip liner is too creamy to anchor lipstick).
Distribution-wise, Iman is no longer sold in department stores. Once a mainstay at JCPenney, the line was left looking for a home when this retailer disbanded its cosmetics department. Where is Iman sold now? In the south and in California you'll find it at select Walgreens, Wal-Mart, and Target stores. On the East Coast it's available at Walgreens and Duane Reade. Several states do not offer the product line at all, including Arizona, the Dakotas, Hawaii, Kansas, Massachusetts, Nevada, New Hampshire, Oregon, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin. It is occasionally carried in select Ulta boutiques. This uneven distribution isn't all that bad, however, because most of the major cosmetics players are ably serving women of color in the way Iman originally intended but for whatever reason didn't maintain.
Note: The products below are representative of what was advertised on Iman's Web site. Other Web sites, such as www.walgreens.com, offer additional Iman makeup items, but they are old stock and are no longer promoted on Iman's namesake site. In other words, buyer beware, because who knows how old those products really are.