Dencia wants to turn your black daughter white
28 May 2014, 15:30
Abuja - As women, most of us have insecurities about the way we look. There are those parts of our bodies that we sometimes wish we could change; you could be envious of your friend's great legs, or your sister's tiny waist that you know you'll probably never have.
For the most part of it we ignore the devil on our shoulder who tries to kill our spirit by constantly reminding us of how imperfect we are. And we learn to live with our uniquely different bodies.
But not everyone can ignore that nagging insecurity, especially when there are ways that will help you get rid of that problem.
The beauty industry is a money making business that has been planting the seeds of doubt in women for decades. It snatches the woman's self-esteem and says if you want to get it back, then do as I say.
The most recent player to emerge into this expansive game is Dencia. Dencia is a Nigerian-Cameroonian singer who is the founder of Whitenicious which according to her website is, 'a moisturizing cream enriched with powerful natural ingredients that will nourish your skin and lighten dark knuckles, knees and elbows'.
The idea of coming up with a skin lightening cream isn't new but what did surprise me is that Dencia is black, and a black woman at that.
Women of colour, from Nicki Minaj to Beyonce, have been suspected of bleaching their skin. And although they've never out right said it, the proof is in the pudding, you just have to see it for yourself.
In an interview with Ebony magazine, Dencia reveals that as a young woman she had skin problems and was a frequent patient at the dermatologist's office.
When asked about her name choice, she said that the colour white symbolizes new beginnings and it is a colour of purity that cleanses the mind and body.
Whitenicious is a product meant to help remove dark spots. But when we look at Dencia's before and after pictures, we see that it removed more than her skin pigmentation.
She developed a product to help with' skin problems', the below images suggest that she saw the colour of her skin as the problem.
'White means pure'
In an interview with Channel 4, Dencia defends herself by saying that people have the freedom to choose whatever they want to do, and if they want to look lighter then so be it. However, she doesn't realize how irresponsible her words are and the negative message she is sending out by saying that 'White means pure'.
Lupita Nyong'o vs Dencia
When Lupita Nyong'o was announced as the new ambassador for Lancome cosmetics, Dencia was the first to call Lupita a hypocrite. She critisized Lupita for endorsing a company that also sells skin lightening products.
And after Lupita gave her acceptance speech at Essence's Black Women in Hollywood event (in which she read out a letter written to her by a young black girl who changed her mind about buying Whitenicious after she saw how Lupita embraces her dark skin), jezebel reports that Dencia took to twitter to defend herself saying, "@IamDencia & oh @Lupita_Nyongo cln't talk abt the bleaching creams white people (Companies) make cuz the white man pays her,they own her!!"
So Dencia says that Lupita is owned by white people, yet she is the founder of a product that makes black women look white. Talk about irony.
Dangers of skin bleaching
Not only is the idea of changing ones skin show a sickness of the mind, it can also has grave medical and health consequences. When used incorrectly such products can lead to mercury poisoning, skin cancer and a myriad of other health problems. When asked about the dangers associates with changing the colour of one's skin, Dencia reminded the world that well, anything can give you cancer, even breathing in air.
(Whitenicious promises results in 7 days. It might be a quick 'fix' but are the possible long term effects worth it?) Image: Whitenicious
In the past we could blame the elusive beauty industry for convincing us that we aren't good enough. But these days, the blame has shifted, and we are the causing and fueling our own insecurities. Yes, women like Lupita exist. Women who teach young girls to embrace their natural disposition. But it's easier to convince a person that something is wrong with them, than it is to reassure them of their beauty.
The issue of skin colour, for women of colour, will always be a controversial one. Even with Lupita one can't help but wonder if she would have garnered as much attention if she had fair skin. Was it her dark skin that seduced the world to love her?
Being comfortable in your skin and body is very hard for most of us, especially when you're bombarded with pictures of people who are described as beautiful but share no similarities with you.
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