This skin bleaching conversation is working my nerves. My color changes throughout the year, and I’ve never touched skin bleach. The one in the purple shirt is me in the winter (February to be exact), white flower in my hair is me in the summer (late July I think), the pic with my hair straightened is from early October (my wedding day!), & the pic in the red dress is at Wiscon. My natural color is probably a shade or two darker than redbone (assuming we’re still defining that as too dark to pass, but lighter than brown), but after a childhood full of admonishments to stay out of the sun so I wouldn’t get too dark (let me tell you about colorstruck relatives some time), I spend a not inconsiderable amount of time in the sun every year while the weather permits.
I don’t bleach anything, but I do live in Chicago & the seasonal weather changes here are usually fairly extreme. The color I am in October is long gone by the end of January. I also have some patches of skin where I have no melanin. Not full blown vitiligo (at least not now, though who knows what age might bring), but they’ve been there since childhood & they don’t tan at all. There’s plenty to be said about the use of Photoshop on celebrities of color, but let’s not pretend that Rihanna, Beyonce, whatever female celeb is this week’s target have to use bleach to change color. Also, why are folks so quick to chin check black women, but say not a word about black men or other POC in the public eye? I mean, I can guess, but I wonder if anyone is honest enough to say it?