Colorism: Keke Palmer Admits She Prayed to Have “Light Skin”

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downloadBy: Krystle Crossman

Actress and singer Keke Palmer says that if you think that colorism in Hollywood is something of the past, you are sadly mistaken. She revealed recently at the Hollywood Confidential Panel in Los Angeles that she used to want lighter skin to fit in with the crowd.

Palmer said that she would hear how pretty girls with light skin were and when she was five years old she would pray that her skin would turn into a lighter color instead of having the dark, beautiful color that she already had. She said that it wasn’t until she turned 13 years old that she realized how beautiful her dark skin was and never wished for light skin again. She came to appreciate her color and accepted that that is who she was.

At one time Palmer had rumors flying that she was bleaching her skin as there were photos of her that had been showing up where it appeared that she had lighter skin than she normally had. She quickly shot down the rumors and denied any type of skin bleaching. She wants everyone to realize that we should not be defining ourselves by how light or dark our skin is. She told people that they should stop following her if they felt differently about that logic.

Actress Kimberly Elise was also on the panel and she added input that African-Americans needed to represent themselves in Hollywood and also in the community. Also on the panel were Gabrielle Union, Alfre Woodard, Viola Davis, Oprah, and Phylicia Rashad. They were discussing Hollywood but then the conversation quickly turned to another subject. They then began to discuss the pressures that black women put on themselves.

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32 Comments

  1. After being ridiculed by family members more than anybody else, I did the the same thing for a very long time even as a young adult. Hearing names like “blacky”, “ugly one”, so forth tends to stick with a person. I made the mistake of turning to men to make me feel better about myself and of course that didn’t work. It took some time but now I like being the darkest person the room. Black really is beautiful. I don’t need a lot of make up to hide the flaws in my skin. I love MY blackness!

    • Lady,

      I would like to commend you on your awareness of your beauty. Men do not define us. We were created for a reason and there is no mistake in what God has created. Love your deep dark chocolate.

  2. Skin tone is still an issue in Hollywood. Especially when we consider how producers were trying to handle the Nina Simone biopic. Outrageous and sad at the same time.

  3. some folk are always wishing for what they don’t have–It’s one of the mysteries that will probably last till infinity —or at least until each one of us mature into the peace of who we are……PEACE!!!!

  4. I’m a dark chick and excuse me but I fail to understand wishing I was anything but the color I am. Not trying to be mean, but I really don’t have the patience for the Kelly Rowlands and Keke Palmers of the world with tales of woe about being darkskinned. I just can’t relate, and I’m not afraid of the sun, slap on some sunscreen and I’m off to the beach, the park or my backyard to get me some rays.

  5. THE ISSUE OF BROWN-SKIN, LIGHT SKIN IS STILL REAL AND ALIVE TODAY IN NEW ORLEANS! IT HAS DIVIDED OUR CITY IN SO MANY WAYS. IMAGINE HAVING TO PAST THE BROWN PAPER” BAG TEST IN ORDER TO GO TO A PARTY IN 1950’S. WELL, IT’S THE SAME TODAY. IN FAMILIES, CHURCHES, POLITICS, HOMES, SCHOOLS…A BROWN SKINNED GIRL HAS TO PROVE HERSELF TO LIGHT-SKINNED BLACKS,AND WHITES.

    • Ok so its 400 years later and stupid black people still discriminate against their own! This intra-racism is supported by the stupidity of our own people! I had family deny me entrance to their homes because I was too dark so I know the pain that KeKe and others have felt regarding their skin tone but now people who feel that way towards me can kiss where the sun don’t shine!

  6. She was 5 years old, hell little boys wish they were Superman at that age, so why shouldn’t little girls who are surrounded with images that say light skin is better not wish to have it, people are so quick to judge, so unaware of the truth, at 5 she was not even an actress, at 5 you are in kindergarden, do people have a problem that she spoke on a topic from her heart, or that she touched on a very real issue in our community, because I have never seen a sex scene with Viola Davis, but I have seen several with Halle Berry, so people can pretend that it is not an issue, and it may not be an issue in the personal lives of many people, however, to most dark skin African Americans boys and girls they understood and totally related to what she said and appreciated her candor, my very dark skin cousin always said , ” I will marry a light woman so my kids will not be so dark”, we can ignore what Keke is saying or try to make it better

  7. Devon cannot you see the contradiction in your post–sunscreen? But you are not afraid of the sun?
    It is helpful that Ms. Palmer was open about her thoughts. That starts the healing.

    • Sun screen protects the skin from the UV (ultra violet) rays that are the leading cause of skin cancer…people can use sunscreen and still get bbrown. Black people get skin cancer too. Pick up a medical book or check the American Cancer Association website and READ about black people and skin cancer. You do read dont you? You should already know this in fact if youre black you should know the cancers that are the deadliest to our people. Readimg is fundamental and educatio is the key to knowledge. Next time read before you call yourself “checking” me or calling me out. Now educate yourself.

  8. The question is how do we heal what harms US, by realizing who we are and finding ways in teaching the next generation,the bible tell the story of US and others, but We are the main characters. read from the beginning to end slow or fast,one day to a year just read it and you will see why we are the way we are, and why we live the way we live and why we treat each other the way we do. All information is in the bible just read it. read by yourself, read it with your spouse, significent other, read it in groups, read while you eat your soup, however you read just do it and you will find out why we are the way we are. it speaks to one nation and that is US. You ever felt that someone was talking or looking at you, well in this case, this is the reason: EVERYBODY KNOWS WHO WE ARE, BUT US,BUT WE. HEAL THYSELF AND YOU WILL HEAL THE WORLD.

    Peace to you and yours.

  9. @ Harold….edit to say sunscreen blocks SOME of the Ultra violet (UV) rays that are known to cause skin cancer. People can use sunscreen and still brown.

  10. WOW IM SOOOOOOOO GLAD TI SAY THAT IVE ALWAYS LOVED MY CHICOLATE DARK SMOOTH SKIN I LOVVVEEE MY BLACKASS COMPLECTION. IM A BEAUTIFUL BLACK SISTER…

  11. Females aren’t even satisfied with what GOD has given them. So one should know that they definitely, wouldn’t be satisfied with what men give them. That’s why I’m so glad that I am single, childless, living in my own home, paying my own bills, and putting food on my own table. I feel so sorry for African-Americans because many a majority are completely lost, with no sense of direction. History is repeating itself, and slavery is returning to the African-American.

  12. Roderick Henderson on

    I noticed that even in the movies that are produced by African Americans they also use the lighter skinned African Americans. If they are so self-concisous about Hollywood playing the race card, are they feeling pressure to use only the choice or preferred color complexion that Hollywood say they should use? Practice what you preach even I as an older adult feel that if the lighter you are the better your chances, and dark skinned men such as myself will always have to work hared to get job, women, and other opportunities. That is not how I feel it’s what I know, what I see!!

  13. I’m a beautiful dark skinned lady! I wear my beautiful in short natural cut! God created ALL races for a purpose according to Acts 17:26. I’ve been all of the world because I was in the military! Italian men and majority of white men preferred black women but they are afraid that we won’t date them because of slavery! Italian men loves black women! I love my dark-skinned. Black don’t crack but white/pale/pink skin gets old when they are teenagers!
    Their pale skin needs make up it was created for them. The beauty industry earned billion of dollars per year! Also black people want to be white and white people spent billions of dollars per year getting a tan. I used to do natural nail care services in a tanning salon; and you can smelled that pale skin burning! I’m happy to be black! White people hate US and they hate their pale skin and they want to be Black. We should be proud of your black ethnicity! Guess what! They love our natural hair! I get so many compliments from white women! Sisters just rolled their eyes. I prayed that our people will embrace their rich history and don’t be afraid of your blackness. I thank God for my dark skinned and we age gracefully.

  14. Let us just enjoy the love our Creator has shown us in every way. and not worry about how others perceive us, in their jealousy, repeat after me We are so blessed and don’t have to copy anyone.

  15. I Llove my pecan skin tone l lovemy dark skin sisters & brothers I did not have any thing to do with the way I was born & neither did U. LOVE YOURSELF THE WAY THE LORD MADE YOU.

  16. You have got to be kidding me….THIS IS STILL GOING ON?

    The psychological programming of this “light skin v dark skin” psychosis has performed exactly as designed: TO BE GENERATIONAL

    Those crazy sociologist from the early days on the plantation said “they would develop a way to keep us all from uniting and banding together”….

    Incredibly it has worked….and is still working.

    Is this now in our DNA?

    .What Slave Mentality HAVING Person is still thinking being lighter is better?

    If being light skinned is better – why have we not married any Kennedy’s? or Rothchilds or DuPonts?

  17. WHO STILL THINKS THIS?

    And this young girl got this idea from WHO in her family?

    Moma?

    This Psychosis designed to keep black slaves from banding together and uprising,
    Is still working 400 years later.

    They said they would develop Psychological Programming that would keep us apart, and I can not believe this is still working on us.

    Young People learn your history …. This is by design…
    No one is better than the others. if light skinned is better, why have we not been able to marry a Kennedy or a DuPont or a Rothchild???

    Don’t be fololed, being mixed is no better – ask Barack! The GOP is giving him hell

  18. One should work on controlling their attitude and tongue when trying to converse or get your point across.Can we not have a healthy conversation without someone out to prove they are much more wiser and tongue more sharper.Devon my remark is directed towards you because you made very valid points about the sun and cancer etc yet your attitude is very negative towards your own people when trying to help others or give knowledge it would be wise not to insult the reciepiant of your message.If we love our blackselves why do we verbally and physically hurt what is a reflection of us?

  19. I am very unhappy about the way we see ourselves, and how we want others to see us. when I watch tv, print and movies all i see is light skin black women getting all of the major roles, when i know that their are plenty of dark skinned women who could play the role, this why I don’t watch “scandal” anybody think that a black man and i mean a dark man would be shown on a major television network showing him ravishing a white women “hell to the no” but it goes on time after time,with a light skinned women. I hate to say it but anytime i see light skinned black women in a role that one of a darker complexion could have play i don’t watch it. I Love all of my sisters, and the same goes for the light skinned brothers they get all of the roles. Just remember the first shall and the last shall be first.
    If you think about who is last then you will know who will be first.

    peace and love to all my sister’s light and dark.

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