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African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge - Fashion - Nairaland

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African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge by Dbestmax(m): 3:39pm On Jul 20, 2014
I came across a somewhat controversial article on
skin bleaching by African women in the UK
Telegraph, written by a Nigerian writer and lawyer,
Sede Alonge, and I thought to bring it here so we can
read and discuss. Sola makes a case for women who
bleach for why they shouldn't be made to feel like
they are betraying their race for wanting to change
their skin colour. Read below...
Toning. Lightening. Brightening. Whitening. While
the marketing slogans promoting skin
enhancement in Africa might be varied, the
underlying effects are pretty identical. Although I
do not use skin lightening products, I live in
Nigeria where millions of women do.
On offer in my local shops are a myriad of
products designed to make dark skin lighter: Kojic
acid soaps, fade creams, hydroquinone creams,
whitening shower gels made from goat milk and
for the more determined: skin lightening
injections. Continue...
So when last month Vera Sidika (pictured above), a
popular Kenyan model and socialite, publicly
admitted to spending tons of money bleaching her
skin, she added fuel to an already smoking hot fire.
Just one admission was enough to re-ignite the fierce
debate about Africans’s perception of beauty.
A bullish Sidika says she is proud of the way she
looks and thinks African societies are hypocritical on
this thorny issue. But her honesty roused the ire of
many social media users across the continent.
Passions inevitably run high among Africans
whenever someone brings into play racial issues. On
the topic of skin whitening, emotionally charged
slogans such as “black is beautiful” are often
employed in an attempt to make women like Sidika
feel as if they are somehow betraying their race.
Such women are then accused of having inferiority
complexes towards white people.
In Nigeria, where 77 per cent of women use skin
lightening products, according to a recent World
Health Organisation report, the mainstream African
commentariat, which is mostly male-dominated,
projects a strong bias against the practice. I myself
am a dark skinned Nigerian woman who does not use
whitening creams or soaps, but I feel that while there
are valid health concerns as to the side-effects of skin
lightening products, it should remain an individual's
prerogative to be who or what they want to be.
Yes, black is beautiful, but so also is white, brown,
yellow and the many shades in between.
When white people use tanning lotions, solariums
and other methods to darken their skin, it is treated
as par for the course and other white people don't
feel the need to remind them that “white is
beautiful”. In fact, such a statement would likely be
regarded as racist by members of other races.
Yes, I understand that there was a specific historical
context in the US and elsewhere which, at the time,
necessitated the use of the “black is beautiful”
slogan in order to boost black people’s sense of self-
worth and identity, but this is 2014 and we should
have gotten beyond that by now. Or are self-
affirming slogans going to be needed by black people
forever?
People’s desire to have a particular skin tone, be it a
darker or lighter one, stems from them wanting to be
more attractive and sometimes for others to take
notice. And more often than not, in the case of an
individual who has undergone skin lightening here in
Africa, it works. The critics might be unwilling to
concede this publicly, but the harsh truth is that in
Africa, lighter skinned girls do get more attention
and are more appreciated than darker skinned
women.
It is not unusual to often hear Nigerian men say
things like: “Oh, I met this beautiful girl the other
day, she had a great body…and she was fair in
complexion.” But then these same men would
hypocritically voice outrage if a Nigerian woman,
especially one in the public eye, openly admitted to
bleaching her skin. If skin tone didn’t matter at all to
Nigerian men, skin lightening creams and soaps
wouldn’t be flying off the shelves over here as they
are right now. In Nigerian music videos too, one can
notice a glaring preference for lighter skinned
females. The niggling suspicion remains that my
society is more self delusional on questions of
identity and its perception of beauty than it cares to
admit.
Physical attraction is instinctive and lighter skinned
women are bound to attract more attention from
men in a dark skinned society such as Nigeria – just
like darker skinned people do in predominantly white
societies. Such interest does not have to be due to
any sort of complex and is often simply mere
curiosity of the different.
Skin lightening should not be automatically regarded
as an individual’s outright rejection of their race. If a
woman feels that lightening her skin will make her
prettier or more confident, then society should let her
be and not impose itself as judge and jury on her
concept of beauty. It is high-time Africans stop being
hysterical and overly-defensive about issues of their
self worth and identity.

9 Likes

Re: African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge by Mynd44: 4:36pm On Jul 20, 2014
Re: African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge by justi4jesu(f): 4:39pm On Jul 20, 2014
hmmm.... whether black or white, who cares undecided

My Skin, My business
undecided

13 Likes

Re: African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge by ebamma(m): 4:39pm On Jul 20, 2014
.
Re: African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge by ebamma(m): 4:40pm On Jul 20, 2014
justi4jesu: hmmm
akap udot
Re: African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge by ClintonNzedimma(m): 4:41pm On Jul 20, 2014
Will you blame them?,they wanna bleach their life out.
....Common....who are we fooling?,
I personally debunk the saying Black is Beautiful.
I believe every human being is beautiful in his/her little way.

As for me, The President Of Boyfriend Association of Nairaland, BAON,
I give a 90 day ultimatum to all girls bleaching whether to Black or Yellow to stay natural or may face Indefinite suspension.
Thank You

24 Likes

Re: African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge by Nobody: 4:41pm On Jul 20, 2014
Ok
Re: African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge by lonelydora: 4:41pm On Jul 20, 2014
Black is beautiful

7 Likes

Re: African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge by Psychodavidovic(m): 4:41pm On Jul 20, 2014
If bleaching will make you beautiful, BLEACH!!

You can't be ugly and be shouting 'Black is beautiful'

Whether you bleach oh, or you no bleach na for your pocket.

33 Likes

Re: African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge by Nobody: 4:42pm On Jul 20, 2014
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

"I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. " MLK

Personally I'm matured enough to see beauty in any color. My two Ex Wives are both white Women (American and British) and my current Wife is Yoruba.

People should leave their life as they see fit as only they will live in their skin.

17 Likes

Re: African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge by freecharles(m): 4:43pm On Jul 20, 2014
I was expecting alot of pictures though

3 Likes

Re: African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge by Nobody: 4:43pm On Jul 20, 2014
Is it by force to believe black is beautiful? They have the right to choose what they want to believe. I hate this idea of forcing things on people. Jeez! lipsrsealed lipsrsealed lipsrsealed angry angry

9 Likes

Re: African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge by TheRealAdonye(m): 4:43pm On Jul 20, 2014
Even Flavour who sang 'Black is Beautiful' probably doesn't believe it.
Silverbird MBGN doesn't believe it either.

Na for all the girls to go purchase Dencia's Whitenicious..

My 4 Naira..

3 Likes

Re: African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge by purplish(f): 4:44pm On Jul 20, 2014
Heck...MBGN 2014 is not even black! So why exactly should they believe? Ehn? *sips cold teem*

6 Likes

Re: African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge by Nobody: 4:44pm On Jul 20, 2014
"I feel that while there are valid health concerns as to the side-effects of skin
lightening products, it should remain an
individual's prerogative to be who or what they want to be."

Nice article.

By the way, I think a lot of Nigerian women believe lightening their skin is the only way to have a beautiful and glowing skin...which is not.

A LOT of Nigerian women need skin care education. A lot!!!!

10 Likes

Re: African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge by Amack(m): 4:45pm On Jul 20, 2014
I hate to see girls breaching.

5 Likes

Re: African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge by chegx(m): 4:45pm On Jul 20, 2014
is it?
Re: African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge by Segadem(m): 4:45pm On Jul 20, 2014
TheRealAdonye: Even Silverbird no believe am too..
What of AGBANI DAREGO?

7 Likes

Re: African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge by Guykhena(m): 4:45pm On Jul 20, 2014
*sighs*
African Girls would put on FAKE hair
African Girls would put on FAKE eyes
African Girls would put on FAKE assets
African Girls would put on FAKE skin(bleaching).

And yet they would be the one saying "I Want A REAL Man"? undecided
.

108 Likes

Re: African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge by mujiboy(m): 4:46pm On Jul 20, 2014
Black is beautiful
White is beautiful
Red is beautiful
.......

6 Likes

Re: African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge by Nobody: 4:46pm On Jul 20, 2014
Individuals have a solid right to do what they like. Black is beautiful ko, white is ugly ni.
Re: African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge by Psychodavidovic(m): 4:46pm On Jul 20, 2014
Amack: I hate to see girls breaching.

We have a 'breach' in English right here. grin

40 Likes

Re: African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge by dguizman(m): 4:47pm On Jul 20, 2014
Black is still beautiful

1 Like

Re: African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge by mencade5(m): 4:47pm On Jul 20, 2014
there is nothing africans wont copy from the white. We copied everything and now we hate our colour and want white skin like the white.
What a race!

2 Likes

Re: African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge by nanizle(m): 4:47pm On Jul 20, 2014
Women bleach their skin for the same reason the they relax their hair or/and fix artificial hair. TO LOOK LIKE EUROPEANS.

Slave Mentality.

11 Likes

Re: African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge by ayusco85(m): 4:47pm On Jul 20, 2014
people wonder why i take ma date swmming on the first date grin. this is why

51 Likes

Re: African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge by Willgates(m): 4:47pm On Jul 20, 2014
.....
Re: African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge by retepmurt(m): 4:47pm On Jul 20, 2014
Awon Faworaja!

2 Likes

Re: African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge by Segadem(m): 4:48pm On Jul 20, 2014
men also contribute by chasing yellow pawpaw ladies.





i HATE Bleaching.
Re: African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge by chegx(m): 4:48pm On Jul 20, 2014
Amack: I hate to see girls breaching.
breaching? dont tell me it's a typo. r is quite a distance from l on the keyB

1 Like

Re: African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge by Blackchampion(m): 4:48pm On Jul 20, 2014
Stop Bleaching
.
#Teamblackisbeautiful

22 Likes

Re: African Women No Longer "Believe Black Is Beautiful" -by Sede Alonge by Akbee(m): 4:48pm On Jul 20, 2014
personally, im of the opinion dat skin bleaching isnt an abomination.its just a practice in the fashion world..however,its obvious dat we Africans are over addicted to the praxtise cos alot of us dont really appreciate nor love our natural colour.
black is beautiful n a universal colour.it isnt just peculiar to Africa.
brown is beautiful too n a universal colour.
by the way,are all African black in complexion?
forget dis colour thing abeg

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