Will the Skin Lightening Crisis in Africa End?

Skin lightening
Skin lightening

In this arena of human existence, many individuals have at all times been possessed by interfering with their appearance to improve their complexity by skin lightening. This phenomenon has been in life for centuries

In Africa, pores and skin lightening, however, comes with a blend of the western remedies of magnificence, colorist, racist undertones, and low shallowness. It’s quite interesting that nearly all African countries underwent colonialism, and so this profoundly modified the African social relations by way of skin texture lightning ointments.

Skin lightening scenario

White supremacy, as forcefully asserted on Africa’s. Meant that the white appearance was a sign and symbol of cleanliness, magnificence, privilege, a desirable outlook, and a good life. White also does mean peace when viewed through another context.

In day to day life, black is always associated and rendered as a bad omen and evil sought of. In the colonial era, the slave trade was so much rampant and cruel in the mind of the colonized. The colonized came to view their skin complexion with so much resentment, for which it was the color that thrust their lives into an infinite miserable existence with no hope of respite.

Will it end?

The minds of the colonized were continually filled with the desire to be equal to the whites, particularly for the women. Light skin is now perceived as the epitome of beauty, capital, and economic status. This norm of skin lightning one’s skin ever existed since ancient times.

It has been a generalized version that when one decides to bleach. Then it does not necessarily mean that they desire the color change. The change in skin complexity brings with it so many benefits since it enables one to be in acquisition of things that, in a real sense, may not have come very quickly if they had a sticker to their melanin-rich skins.

Statistics show that the number of those lightning their skins in Africa. Reveals a big problem when it comes to the perception of beauty in the continent. On average, about 40% of the women in Africa bleach their skins. With Nigeria having the highest percentage of active use of skin lightening products followed by Togo, South Africa then Senegal.


The idea of skin lightning appears to be an excellent idea. But it’s quite clear that there’s nothing good that doesn’t have its negative side. This idea around skin lightning is not complete without addressing the side effects that it brings with it. These come with adverse health and environmental impact. Mercury is one of the most common ingredients in the initial manufacture of skin lightening creams. It inhibits the production of melanin and exfoliates the outer layers of the outer skin by producing hydrochloric acid.

Another used chemical is hydroquinone, which acts as a depigmenting agent that lightens the skin. But it also causes adverse skin effects such as dermatitis. The Blue-black discoloration, and even blindness.

For us to be safe, then the preference of light skin should be done away with. And it’s high time we revise our norms of beauty in line with various unique cultures.



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