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Colorism: Is Self Love Truly All You Need?

Colorism is easily one of the most vicious societal constructs ever to exist. Although a lot of people might disagree, because it isn’t as brutal as racism, colorism is equally devastating. Colorism basically stems from a myraid of stereotypes related to having dark skin.  I’ve found that most people who tend to roll their eyes whenever this issue is discussed, are either ignorant or basically, lack the empathy to understand what might not be their reality. Growing up as a dark skinned woman was never easy, especially when you have the deepest skin tone amongst your family & friends. You have to deal with being called names like “Blackie,” (which I still put up with today, because I’m tired of explaining why it is wrong to people). Plus, you’re immediately thought to be belligerent and unattractive.

Effects Of Colorism
The effects of colorism run deeper than teasing names. According to research, dark skinned women are more likely to get paid less compared to light skinned women. Also, there are more job opportunities open to light skinned women compared to women with a darker skin tone. However, the greatest effect of colorism and any other type of discriminatory phenomenon is the feeling of not being enough. Dealing with feeling unaccepted and unloved can be harmful in every aspect of our lives. Fortunately, there is one way to combat this feeling… and that’s with self love.

Self love simply refers to the realization that we can only be at our best when we love ourselves. Essentially, loving ourselves unconditionally and being aware that we are indeed enough truly helps. If you’ve been struggling with feeling your best about your skin, hair, weight, etc., try out these self care tips;

Reevaluate Your Idea Of Beauty
Growing up, you can easily tell what beauty looks like according to mainstream media. Although a lot of categories in media are beginning to include dark skinned men & women more, it can be difficult to shake away the perceptions we have become so used to. Hence, you need to change your perceptions of beauty. Recognize that your skin is beautiful and just like pearls (thank you Beyoncé!!!). Focus on amazing personalities who represent you and how they smash stereotypes & achieve their goals unapologetocally.

Focus On What You Love About Yourself
One of the best ways to love yourself is by focusing on other aspects of you that you absolutely adore. It could be easy things like your outlook on life, your personality, your laugh. Essentially, loving anything that defines you and you alone is a great way to love yourself.

Accept Your Skin
Words are powerful and can be all you need to improve the way you perceive your skin. So, spend more time loving and accepting your unique attributes, instead of criticizing it constantly. As a matter of fact, whenever you get the urge to talk negatively about yourself, think to yourself if you’ll say those words to a friend. That way, you van understand how detrimental those words can be to your mental health.

Finally, always remember that you are beautiful, you’re enough and most importantly, you are YOU. Try out these tips and slowly you’ll love your skin, regardless of other people’s opinion.

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