Often in society, the physical characteristics of a person are favored over inner beauty. Characteristics that are common of people in or from Europe are favored – straight blonde hair, lighter skin tone, more defined and straighter noses, etc… Every day, YouTube Vlogs and blogs on the internet are popping up with ways to change one’s physical appearance “naturally.”
One thing commonly said in the Black Community is “You’re Pretty For A Dark Skin Girl.” …..
(I’ll let that soak in)
People say it as a term of “endearment,” but that statement is offensive. The practice of Colorism in the Black Community is getting out of hand! Yes, some races tan to get darker, some apply false eye lashes and make up everyday to feel beautiful or appeal to the opposite sex, and some just love the excitement of changing up their outer features. Regardless the reason, these are all things things that change one’s appearance but that’s just that… outer appearance. Nothing is more damaging to one’s self confidence and self – esteem than to hear that people that have the same skin tone as them may or may not be attractive, but people that have lighter skin tones are automatically attractive.
Like stated before, these “compliments” given by people are seen as terms of endearment or “good job that you landed the being pretty role .” Why is it that it’s so common for people to say statements such as these, that after a while, the question can just roll off of their tongues without them even questioning their remarks? It’s common because it’s been going on in the Black community for so long. Colorism can be traced all the way back to slavery. Lighter complexion enslaved humans were often given the better housing, the better clothes, better treatment, less physically straining work, etc… Even in society you can still hear people “joking” saying “Oh hush you lazy house nigga” or “Danggg, you as black as a field nigga.”
(I’ll let that sink in) *fix it Jesus*
After slavery ended, and HBCU (Historically Black Colleges and Universities) institutions were built, some colleges use to require a picture on the college application to ensure that they didn’t enroll too many dark complexion individuals.
Fast forward a couple years, let’s talk about some mainstream music that is praised by large crowds in the African-American community. No matter where you turn, if you watch a recent music video from the past 6-8 years, lyrics have changed. I’m not going to put the blame on specific artist because although they should realize their lyrics are powerful to some people, it’s not their job to be role models. No longer do you hear lyrics along the lines of “I want a good woman, that’ll stand by me through good times and bad,” or ” Sunny days, everybody loves them. Tell me, can you stand the rain?” all you hear is “I want a million dollars and a lightskin bad bitch”, “I like em’ long haired, thick, red bone”, or “Sweet yella bone thing I call her honey mustard” – don’t worry I’ll talk about music lyrics in a later blog 🙂
If all the young men and women hear is “bad yellow boned bitch and red bone nigga” then that’s what they’ll praise when they get older. It’s almost like the natural hair movement that’s taking over… just like society has recently been shocked by the vast amount of beautiful haired women wearing their natural textured hair because it hasn’t been publicly displayed for 40 years… so are some young people who have NEVER heard of “dark skin” being beautiful.
As always, leave your opinion and constructive criticism in the comment section. Also, has there ever been a time when you felt offended because of a comment or suggestion about your skin tone? Or maybe you’ve heard comments about other people’s skin tones? Comment your story in the comment section. Thanks so much for all the support!
P.S. Regardless of what race or ethnicity we are, we are all human. We need to emphasize more on inner beauty and start teaching young boys and young girls that no matter the trend, be themselves. Trends come and go, but true beauty never fades and is always radiant. 🙂