Skin bleaching is an attempt to make skin fairer by using some chemical stuff that reduces the effect of melanin and lighten the skin. Skin bleaching has another aspect that is related to psychology of people. Women use skin bleaching in order to look beautiful and also it enhances their confidence. This paper intends to discuss skin bleaching and also discusses why dark skin girls feel less confident than light skin girls along with discussing several other related aspects of the subject.
Trend of skin bleaching is on the increase and the mindset of colonial subjugation is one of biggest reasons of skin bleaching. People with black skin have been ruled by English and other imperialistic powers. This subjugation has set a trend that people who are white are superior. People with white skin are treated with respect by the people who are black skinned. Such reasons compel black skinned people to make every effort in order to lighten their skin and bleaching of their skin is an effective method in their eyes.
In most of the African societies, marriage is considered as one option to get a good life for girls. Girls do everything that can help them in getting a good earning husband. Girl, who is fairer, can get a husband easily in comparison of other girls who are naturally dark. One girl asserts, “Ghanaians are naturally dark, so if you’re fair people think you’re prettier, special. And most men would prefer to marry a fair woman (Adae-Amoakoh)”.
Skin color plays a significant role in personal and social relations. After a long period of imperial rule, white skin is established as the seal of beauty. It also forced black skinned people in order to do something for lightening their black skin else they would remain backward and achieve nothing in their life. Black skin people tried hard and were trapped in the cruel claw of market that is based on revenue. Market does not differentiate between black and white skinned people especially when it has to extract money (Adae-Amoakoh).
One important aspect of the issue is that this trend is supported by a section of media. Business houses, trough their advertising campaigns, have pumped this weird fact into minds of people that white people are more attractive and black skinned people are not so beautiful. Business houses suggest people to use certain creams and cosmetic products that make their skin fairer. Business houses are making huge amount of money by selling fairness creams and cosmetic products (Findlay and Beer).
These companies have started targeting people of African region where they advertise their cosmetic products and suggest black skinned people to use these cosmetic products in order to get a fairer skin. These cosmetic products are advertised in way that people who are black are forced to think that being black is the main reason why they are not getting girl or boy friend. It is advertised that using cosmetic product of a particular brand can be a panacea and can solve all problems of the user (Giudice and Yves).
It has been observed that teenagers in African region are using skin bleaching ad other cosmetic products in order to get fair skin. These cosmetic products are injurious ad harm the skin and health of user. Usually these products contain toxic substances like mercury, hydroquinone and different steroids that are harmful and can affect human health in a severe manner. Kidney related issues, diabetes, blood pressure are some very common dangers related to these products (Petit et al.).
Now in spite of all dangers and risks, skin bleaching has become an epidemic among people in several African societies. Women and teenagers have started these products and also bleach skin of their children in order to start the process of lightening at an early stage. A huge number of people who use skin bleaching do not accept that they are constantly using these products. These people fail to understand that there is a difference between naturally white and a naturally black person. This difference cannot be filled by using any artificial cosmetic product like skin bleaching.
This trend is found across the globe and people have been using skin bleaching in order to get fairer skin. In African societies, it is found more, but skin bleaching is used in every parts of the world. This should be avoided considering injurious consequences of skin bleaching as well as other cosmetic products..
After having observed the succinct view of the above mentioned subject, it can be concluded that skin bleaching is an idea that is created by the market in order to haul out customer’s money. Market forces have used media as a tool to convince people that by using skin bleaching, they can get a fair skin and can achieve a better position in their personal as well social life.
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Adae-Amoakoh, Nana. "Think Africa Press." 14 March 2012. thinkafricapress. 8 December 2013 <http://thinkafricapress.com/culture/skin-whitening-light-and-fair>.
G. H. Findlay and H. A. De. Beer. "Chronic hydroquinone poisoning of the skin from skin-lightening cosmetics." SA Mediese Tydskrif (1980): 187-190.
P. Del Giudice and P. Yves. "The widespread use of skin lightening creams in Senegal: a persistent public health problem in West Africa." International Journal of Dermatology (2002, 41(2)): 69–72.