Feminist icon and actress, Emma Watson, is currently attracting a lot of controversy about an old Lancome advertisement because people feel it promotes skin bleaching.
Actual bleaching and fading creams are sold in pharmacies across the world and unfortunately are widely known and used among some people of color.
Bleaching and fading creams, do exactly as what you’d expect. They are used to fade dark spots or to lighten one’s skin. Some of these claims glorify lighter skin. Boxes might even include a frowning women with dark skin in a before picture and a smiling women in an after picture once her skin is drastically lightened. Essentially, to me, these creams sit on the shelves of CVS screaming “your dark skin is not beautiful.”
When stores sell these creams, they’re physical reminders that dark skin is still not accepted, and that in order to be beautiful the skin must be bleached to fit in, no matter what the lasting effects might be. Acceptance of diversity will come once beauty brands and icons take a stand against selling bleaching and fading creams. The things is, beauty products should only express our fierceness, not lighten the color of our skin.
All photos by RunwayRiot.