Black Is Beautiful: Models Who Bleach Their Skin Banned From Dakar Fashion Week


download (5)By: Krystle Crossman

Adama Ndiaye is the founder of Senegal’s Dakar Fashion Week. She has recently put a ban on certain models in her fashion show. Why? Because they are doing something that she is calling depigmentation. They are bleaching their skin so that they look lighter. She says she thinks this is ugly and is a turn off.

African models definitely have a hard time in the industry. They feel pressure that they need to have lighter skin in order to be accepted in the modeling and fashion world. The reason that Ndiaye is putting the ban on models that go through skin bleaching is because she wants to teach African models that they are beautiful no matter how dark their skin is and they shouldn’t be conforming to what others think. She also wants to bring forward the risk of skin bleaching to the models.

Long-term skin bleaching can cause blotches on the skin. To lighten the skin the women use a prescription-strength corticosteroid cream which when absorbed into the bloodstream can cause serious heart defects. Another side effect of this cream is skin cancer.

Many people know of these risks and yet skin bleaching is still very prevalent. They don’t want to believe that they can be beautiful in the skin they are in. This goes many years back and has been passed down through generations. One woman told a story of how when she was growing up in the Caribbean her great aunts would offer them sun bleaching lotion because they grew up in the early 1900s and grew up wanting to have skin like the Queen of England.

One of the models from the Dakar Fashion Week spoke out in response to the ban saying that it was a great thing and she felt that it would help to discourage others from bleaching.



  1. Annette Parker on


  2. The pigment in blacks have always been beautiful. Particularly black women are beautiful and it seems they bleach their skin to be accepted in the business world of modeling. Its more of an attitude or state of mind that would make or influence someone to bleach their skin to be accepted in the modeling world. Adama Ndiaye keep up the good work, this is putting out good information for ladies who are thinking of doing this good health infomation as to why they shouldn’t

  3. Linguère Sheba Lo on

    It's so common here in Senegal…and you can find it in the poorest and richest areas. The rapped news (done by hip hop artists) just had a piece on bleaching a few weeks ago. You don't have to look very far to see it.

  4. The only way to gain self-esteem is by showing. I am a proud, proud, proud, proud, proud, proud chocolate woman. There is no man Black, White, Yellow, or Brown that will make me think that I am less of a beautiful woman because my skin is hershey chocolate. Those who bleach their skin is only giving those who are trying to make you feel less what they want, and it makes it very hard for those of us who do "Love" our beautiful "dark skin tone". Stop" living by man or womans standards. You should know by now if man was the creator of us all, myself, and many other beautiful dark skin women, as well as men would not exist on this earth. 'God chose you and put you in your mothers womb, and you came out "fearlessly and wonderfully" made, marvelous are 'Gods work not mans. I agree with Ms.Ndiaye. Stand up to those women who feel inadquate on the inside. Rather they believe in God or not. He made you and you are beautiful dark skin and all.

  5. Finally someone is doing soemthing in the model industry that makes sense. BRAVISSIMO to you sister. Keep up the great work. And to the sisters who feel that you cannot make it in the modeling bisiness with darker skin, either do something to increase your fragile self esteem, or get out of the business and try another career.

  6. amazing grace on

    There is nothing more gorgeous than a beautiful dark skin man or woman with gorgeous features. Come on people, love what your ancestors have given you….

  7. Wonderful…Wonderful and timely article This ban is so badly needed to provide vital knowledge to all Black models & Black women. Thank you you posting this article, and much appreciation goes out to the person responsible for making sure this article reaches the people. Black models be wise…Don’t be fooled by all of the hype on TV, radio, or in the general media. The fact is….Black is beautiful. The ban is great because hopefully it will teach young Black models, and young Black women in general to love themselves just the way God made them. Check it out…there are people all over the world paying big $$ just to try to look like YOU! The next time you visit a cosmetic counter, take note at all of the new “dark” creams that are being sold to people who are desperately trying to look just like YOU! There is an ever increasing rise of the use of a variety of dark creams, lotions, and tanning booths that are in use….just to try to look like YOU!! So, don’t be influenced by any form of media. Simply love your Natural Black Skin, and learn to keep it healthy by NOT using any type of products to alter it. Just a thought…The Queen of Sheba was a Beautiful Black woman…and she didn’t use bleaching creams. Be wise, keep your skin healthy just in it’s natural state….and yes…there is no doubt that Black is Beautiful!!

  8. Amazing Grace… Interesting comment your left.
    There is nothing more beautiful that a black woman with GORGEOUS FEATURES!
    Most chocolate or dark skinned people of African descent, have wide noses and thick lips. Are you saying those particular features are gorgeous? I don’t think so. In fact,
    I think you feel the same about thin noses and lips as these models feel about lighter skin.

    • So now you’re a mind reader. How the hell do you know what Amazing Grace feels. I for one think that thin noses on women, make thm look like ugly wicked witches. And everybody loves juicy full lips. What man wants to kis a woman with lips that they can’t feel. Soft full lips feel soft on a man’s lips and that is what they love. Sorry toots, but guys are not into boney skeletor looking women. They remind men of young skinny little boys with wigs on.

  9. Pingback: The Campaign against Skin Bleaching | The Progress

Leave A Reply