In Nigeria, skin bleaching is very widespread. Based on popular beliefs and societal pressures, many people believe having lighter skin is better than having darker skin for so many reasons.
These reasons range from believing lighter skin is more attractive to wanting to conform to societal stereotypes.
Recently, for our controversial topics column, we asked 7 Nigerians about bleaching. We asked if they bleach, what they think of it, why they believe people bleach, and if bleaching should be normalised in society. Here are their opinions.
I don’t think it’s okay to bleach. It does have side effects in terms of your skin health. Bleaching also shows inferiority complexes.
I don’t bleach. I am comfortable in my skin and in what I look like so I don’t see the need to bleach. I think people bleach due to insecurities and inferiority complexes. They think low of their race, especially them being black.
I think it’s wrong to like people based on the colour of their skin. Though I am dark-skinned and African, having lived in the United States for 9 years, I have come to see different people of different skin colours and appreciated them based on who they are rather than their skin colours.
I know there are many opinions around skin bleaching, but I don’t think it should be normalised in society. I think, instead, society should not put so much pressure on people to be a certain way.
I don’t bleach because I’ve accepted that God intended for me to be black. Also, I think bleaching is expensive and when not done properly, it leads to dark spots on the body and I don’t care that much about being light-skinned.
I think the reason people bleach is almost the same as the reason why people become transgender – cultural trends and people’s perceptions of what beauty means. Most people believe that fair is beautiful and black is not.
So, when a person beaches, they are trying to conform to a popular idea and it is proof that they don’t understand that every colour is beautiful in its own way. I guess people bleach to please the perception that true beauty is fair and black is not beautiful.
I like all skin colours. The most important thing for me in my relationships and with people and my interactions with them is who they are on the inside and their character. No matter how beautiful you are, I will not be your friend is you do not have a good character.
Lighter skinned people do look attractive but when a person is dark and they take care of their dark well and are comfortable in it, they are also beautiful. It’s more about how comfortable a person is in their skin and in who they are. This stems from knowing God and who He says you are.
No, it is not okay to bleach. It can be very tempting to (for some people), but just know that it’s a journey you’ll regret because you would wake up every day wishing you could go back to your normal God-given low maintenance skin tone.
I do not bleach, but I’ve toned my skin in the past. I hated it. However, I currently use natural ingredients to brighten very very dark spots on my skin. I just put a drop on the spot and wait very patiently to see results.
I believe people bleach because they have low self-esteem and they do not appreciate their natural skin. They believe it is ugly and inferior. Some bleach to appear more attractive to the opposite sex. It all just boils down to low self-esteem and ingratitude to God.
I love my men chocolate. I discovered that though light-skinned people are easy to spot and appear attractive at first glance, upon a deeper look, you’ll realise they’re not even so fine. But when a dark-skinned person is fine, omo × infinity, they are finnneeee. I just love chocolate glowing skin. It’s so beautiful🥺. Light skin is beautiful too, but just not my thing.
Looking at my chocolate glowing skin gives me joy, that’s why I don’t bleach. God gave me my skin tone for a reason. He doesn’t make mistakes. Plus, when people say I’m fine, I know I’m fine for real. No be my skin dey deceive them.
The idea of bleaching starts from childhood. When children are bullied at school and called “Blackie” or “Ugly” just because they’re darker than their peers. They begin to hate themselves and their skin. Low self-esteem sets in. Then they resort to bleaching so they can be accepted by society, or so they think.
However, they end up spoiling their skin and wishing they never went down that path. So it’s a life of regret from childhood (chocolate low maintenance skin that they hated) to adulthood (white high maintenance skin that they still hate). In a documentary I watched on Netflix titled “Skin” (y’all should check it out😉), Bobrisky spoke about how he regrets bleaching his skin and how much attention and money his skin requires.
He has to apply his bleaching cream meticulously every morning before setting out so that he doesn’t start developing black spots. He advises everyone to flee from bleaching. I agree with him since he is an expert.
Lol. Bleaching is already very normal in society. It is accepted. Don’t you see “whitening creams” in every beauty store you walk into in Nigeria? Biko! It is normal but harmful. The fact that it is normal doesn’t make it any less harmful.
It’s just like inviting skin cancer. Some will not even use sunscreen. They will now be frying their skin and end up with terrible sunburns. Most people resort to using inferior products that just damage their skin making it look uneven and spotted and, honestly, very ugly old and dry.
I advise everyone to use natural products for their skin. The way your skin will be glowing and youthful will make you burn all your skin bleaching products and vow never to walk down that path again.
No, I do not bleach. I don’t do it because I’m happy with the shade of my skin. I’m not sure why people bleach, but I think it has something to do with self-esteem issues.
I have no preference when it comes to skin colours. Whether a person is light-skinned or dark-skinned does not matter to me.
I have no opinions about bleaching. People have their choices to make and I don’t think I should be a judge of what people decide to do with themselves.
As for bleaching being normalised in society, maybe it should not be normalised on such a wide scale, but people should at least be able to consider it.
No, I don’t bleach because I love my skin the way it is, this caramel colour I have is everything 😍😍.
People bleach for various reasons, some bleach out of peer pressure, some out of jealousy (I know, it sounds ridiculous), some even bleach to satisfy their partner, it’s usually females that fall into this category, and some bleach to “maintain their colour” 🙄🙄🙄. Some even bleach simply for experimental purposes.
I really have no preference, for me, it’s all about the personality. Light-skinned people may seem appealing on the outside, but it’s what’s inside that really counts.
Ahhhhh, bleaching methods yapaaaaaaaaa!!!!!! There’s the most common and one of the cheapest one, using cream, there’s using of soap, and there’s a bath, I’ve only heard of this one, it’s expensive and the bleaching is instant! But this method requires upkeep or the person may start to stink 😷.
I think bleaching is harmful and stressful. It really damages the skin of the bleacher, and for those who were insecure before bleaching, it only worsens their insecurity. Those who did it to meet up to a standard will just get stuck in a never-ending rat race.
I think people should be taught to love and embrace their skin the way it is instead of normalising bleaching in society.
I don’t bleach because I’m comfortable with my skin colour and so I wouldn’t want to do anything to put it in harm’s way. It’s not OK for me to bleach my skin.
I think people bleach purely out of a lack of self-esteem. I don’t prefer any skin colour as a person, but when it comes to the opposite sex, I find that I am more drawn towards dark-skinned ladies. It’s just d way I’m wired.
I don’t know if there are types of bleaching, I only know some creams are more expensive than others. Bleaching, for me, is highly unnecessary, except you are doing it to save your life.
I think instead of it being normalised in society, it should be preached against.
No, I don’t bleach because I love my black the way it is. Bleaching is not an option for me. I believe people clean to meet up with some form of aesthetic standard.
I don’t prefer any skin colour. A light-skinned person and a dark-skinned person are the same to me. I think bleaching is harmful in so many ways but I also think that if a person wishes to bleach, it is their choice.
There are so many pressures in society, so, even though I don’t think bleaching should be normalised, I think everyone should be allowed to make their decisions on their skin.