Skin Tone and Beauty
Today, as I was running into the grocery store to pick up a few last-minute things for dinner. An older black women approached me. Well, she basically jumped in front of me, got in my face and asked “what are you mixed with? You got some good hair”. That question stopped me in my tracks for a minute as I simply answered her, “umm thanks?, I’m black” and walked in the other direction. I got to wondering why are so many people so concerned with skin tone and hair texture what impact does that have on us as black women? You know what I mean, I’m so sick of hearing the question, what are you? or What you mixed with? As if the answer I give them really matters or like its going to change the way they look at me. Like if I said I was mixed, all of the suddenly I’m pretty or unique looking? Why can’t we get past the racial “beauty standards” of our past? You know, the like the fairer or lighter you are the more you are accepted by blacks and others races alike, the “good hair” beauty test (who came up with that term and why is it still in our vocabulary? I hate that term!) I just don’t understand why we can’t get past these false perceptions of beauty and why we as black people, specifically black women can’t appreciate each other for all of our differences. Why must we always criticize and tear each other down whenever someone doesn’t conform to what we think is the “main stream” definition of beautiful? Why do we constantly compare ourselves to others, celebrities or anyone else we think looks more main stream? I’m just as guilty of this as everyone else. Back in the day, I used to wish and pray that I looked different, more like my friends or the “pretty girls”. Just because you aren’t light-skinned, have long curly hair, a “small” nose, “smaller” lips, the perfect figure, etc. doesn’t mean you aren’t beautiful too. Why do we as women beat ourselves up for not looking a certain way? Personally, I have gotten to the point to where I look myself in the mirror and I’m like, this is me. Good and the bad. It is what it is, although I do have my bad days like every other woman, I have finally come to the realization that I will never look like Beyonce and it’s ok. I need to stop trying to be someone else and just be myself because you know what, I’m just as fierce as that chick on the cover of Essence or Glamor Magazine. *three snaps in a circle*
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