March 9, 2010

Seen any good skin bleaching lately?

So last year I did a brief series on the sudden infiltration of skin bleaching products in my neighborhood--it produced some decent conversations *mutter* but it dropped off because unfortunately I had to return to school, in Johnson City where skin bleaching = sunlight.

Skin bleaching, for the record, its just what it sounds like--bleaching your dark skin lighter. For people of color this usually means bleaching our skin lighter using harmful chemicals to meet white beauty standards. And I mean all people of color, not just blacks--look at me, I'm world-literate!


Now that I'm done being bitter, here's a word from Danz McCabe, my righteous/brother/evil twin/reporter on scene.

Daniel is in Atlanta, Georgia right now doing some super-sekrit outreach program (alternative spring break I think) and in the local CVS (drugstore, like a Walgreen's) he spots our old friend skin bleaching cream for $6.69:

The foto is sideways because I wasn't bright enough to flip it over. But what you're seeing is a small pink box with a round half black half white logo that says "Black and White" and next to it "BLEACHING CREAM with hydroquinone-- have a wiki article--for a smooth, even complexion tone"

Well let's go through all the familiar skepticism for old time's sake-- "But Xands it just says for even complexion, what about those poor people with liver spots and freckles? WON'T SOMEONE THINK OF THE FRECKLES?!"

And again that'd be all good if these products weren't consistently found in the "black/ethnic section" of these stores. Here's a flash back for you of the box I found at my local Kroger (same box just so you know):

One of the fotos we got last summer, also the red, white & gold box of Dr. Fred Summit's Skin Whitener (tone & bleach cream), and a row of black hair care products just in case the point hasn't been drilled in enough.

Well at the very least I can assure you this is not a rare occurrence--coming across skin bleaching products is getting increasingly common around here--and it's no coincidence this is being marketed to people of color (in this case, black people), we're not going to go through that again because there's nothing else to learn down that path.

Oh and just for fun, here's the link to a story I was just reading about black Barbies being sold for half the price of white Barbies. Yep, being a minority is fun times.

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