We’ve come a long way… or have we?

1966 Ebony cover

When I first saw this magazine cover I must admit I was in denial that this was actually an Ebony magazine cover. I mean after all, Ebony magazine is for US, right? And by “US” I mean Black Women! And not just the light skinned, with straight hair and acceptable European features Black Women. Smh.

The sad thing is how much has really changed? We’re almost in 2016, and not only has society’s perceptions remained the same, but within the Black community our own perceptions of beauty have not strayed too far from the mindset that led to the printing of this cover.

Sure, a number of our brown skinned sistas have made it on magazine covers, and a few of our dark skinned sistas have been praised and celebrated, but has that changed society’s perceptions of beauty at its core? Within our own community, what percentage of brown skinned and dark skinned Black Women are made to feel beautiful? Attractive? Appealing? If you think the percentage is high, then why are the number of Black women seeking to lighten their skin growing day by day?

Thanks to the long-lasting effects of slavery and the subsequent oppression that Black folks have been subjected to, it’s no wonder that society exists in a perpetual state of ignorance!

We’ve gotta do better.

We’ve gotta remember that just because the media has used reality tv as a means of showcasing Brown and Dark skinned Black Women as ghetto, ratchet, unattractive, and a host of other negative adjectives does not mean the Majority of Black Women get to be defined as such!!

Society’s perception of beauty may be out of whack, but that doesn’t mean we have to believe the hype. Black Women come in all shades of brown, all equally beautiful, and as a community we need to start acknowledging and celebrating this before we lose another generation of young sistas to low self-esteem and no sense of pride in their own natural beauty.




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