A few days before her historic Oscar win (for the first movie she’s ever been in!) Lupita accepted an award for Best Breakthrough Performance at the seventh annual Black Women in Hollywood Luncheon hosted by Essence magazine. It was there she delivered a speech on beauty that every little girl should hear.
I received a letter from a girl and I’d like to share just a small part of it with you: “Dear Lupita,” it reads, “I think you’re really lucky to be this Black but yet this successful in Hollywood overnight. I was just about to buy Dencia’s Whitenicious cream to lighten my skin when you appeared on the world map and saved me.”
My heart bled a little when I read those words. I could never have guessed that my first job out of school would be so powerful in and of itself and that it would propel me to be such an image of hope in the same way that the women of The Color Purple were to me.
I remember a time when I too felt unbeautiful. I put on the TV and only saw pale skin, I got teased and taunted about my night-shaded skin. And my one prayer to God, the miracle worker, was that I would wake up lighter-skinned. The morning would come and I would be so excited about seeing my new skin that I would refuse to look down at myself until I was in front of a mirror because I wanted to see my fair face first. And every day I experienced the same disappointment of being just as dark as I had been the day before. I tried to negotiate with God: I told him I would stop stealing sugar cubes at night if he gave me what I wanted; I would listen to my mother’s every word and never lose my school sweater again if he just made me a little lighter. But I guess God was unimpressed with my bargaining chips because He never listened.
And when I was a teenager my self-hate grew worse, as you can imagine happens with adolescence. My mother reminded me often that she thought that I was beautiful but that was no consolation: She’s my mother, of course she’s supposed to think I am beautiful. And then Alek Wek came on the international scene. A celebrated model, she was dark as night, she was on all of the runways and in every magazine and everyone was talking about how beautiful she was. Even Oprah called her beautiful and that made it a fact. I couldn’t believe that people were embracing a woman who looked so much like me as beautiful. My complexion had always been an obstacle to overcome and all of a sudden, Oprah was telling me it wasn’t. It was perplexing and I wanted to reject it because I had begun to enjoy the seduction of inadequacy. But a flower couldn’t help but bloom inside of me. When I saw Alek I inadvertently saw a reflection of myself that I could not deny. Now, I had a spring in my step because I felt more seen, more appreciated by the far away gatekeepers of beauty, but around me the preference for light skin prevailed. To the beholders that I thought mattered, I was still unbeautiful. And my mother again would say to me, “You can’t eat beauty. It doesn’t feed you.” And these words plagued and bothered me; I didn’t really understand them until finally I realized that beauty was not a thing that I could acquire or consume, it was something that I just had to be.
And what my mother meant when she said you can’t eat beauty was that you can’t rely on how you look to sustain you. What is fundamentally beautiful is compassion for yourself and for those around you. That kind of beauty enflames the heart and enchants the soul. It is what got Patsey in so much trouble with her master, but it is also what has kept her story alive to this day. We remember the beauty of her spirit even after the beauty of her body has faded away.
And so I hope that my presence on your screens and in the magazines may lead you, young girl, on a similar journey. That you will feel the validation of your external beauty but also get to the deeper business of being beautiful inside. There is no shade to that beauty.There may be small errors in this transcript.
(Source : careydiva)
“During the civili rights struggle, Birmingham canceled high school prom for many black teenagers. This weekend, the dance went on for the Class of 1963”
The people who were teenagers during the Civil Rights Movement are still alive, y’all. Their lives were affected by blatant, government-sanctioned racism. It astounds me that people act like it was thousands of years ago.
THIS IS AMAZING…
Look at gramma with the punk rock side bang
“Turquoise & Rose”
Today’s look is a remix, meaning that I’ve worn it before differently. You see I’m on a kick to utilize all pieces in my wardrobe regularly. To do this…
"he real cute but he prolly don’t like black girls."
that is literally the first thing i think when I see any handsome guy. and ya know that thought is like both protective and hurtful for me. I think it cuz I know it to be very real possibility and i say it to myself to avoid crushing on guys and getting insulted by them because I like them and they would never like me. At the same time, it hurts to think it cuz it always makes me feel so hideous (like monstrous hideous) and unlovable. And as I am getting older, i see that those are very intense feelings that definitely dictate my expression of interest in certain guys. Like I’ve gone through so many instances of painful rejection that were definitely rooted in my being a black girl, and therefore wholly undesirable, that I just don’t put myself through it anymore.
It’s really not a good feeling to have the idea ingrained in you that you are inherently deficient/less than and would be lucky to be loved by someone else. And iz weird cuz I don’t particularly carry that mindset with me when I’m living my life (well not anymore), but I understand that that is a reality around me…not necessarily within in me. I understand that that’s the way most ppl and most likely, men I’m interested in will see me. idk if that makes sense but that video is like real life.
I’m really honored to be born a black woman tbqh and I really love it and I love black womyn but I still harbor that distorted reality that I ain’t worth shit in the eyes of everyone else cuz that is just what life has taught me. But now i’m happy that I no longer internalize it (as much)…i wish it would go away but I think i hold on to it psychically as some sort of protective mechanism/reality check?
Every black girl has felt this at one point. This is deeper than a simple fear of rejection, a fear of not being “pretty” enough. This is important. This needs to be acknowledged.
I know this feeling. People pick out that I’m definitely not white by my skin color and facial features but most of the time, they don’t pick out that I’m black. So, as a defense mechanism I don’t tell them my very obviously ethnic sounding name or even that I’m black. It has saved me a lot of hurt and pain but I think in the end, it just builds up MORE hurt and pain because I’m suppressing my blackness to make others comfortable with me.. I hate it. I’ve been getting better at just being me lately, though.
A quick tip for writers out there, who use Microsoft Word:
Change the background colour of the pages to a mint green shade.
It is said that green is a calming colour, however, the main reason why I like this, is because I can write for a much longer period of time now, as a white background I used before made my eyes dry and exhausted after just a few hours of working.
It is basically much more soft and careful to the eyes. I can’t precisely explain why that is. I think it’s that by making a pinch softer contrast of the text and the background, your eyes does not get exposed to as much light.
Just make sure to not make the background too dark, or else your eyes will get exhausted due to over-fixating the lack of contrast between text and background.
And maybe you find a nice pastel/light background shade that fits you; give it a try.
Different things work out and fits for different people. And I just felt like sharing this.
Here’s the shade numbers I used to get my preferred colour:
Thanks for reading.
Ana Bela Santos Pat Pat’s SS15
(Source : newblacknmild)
WHEN PEOPLE SAY YOU HAVE PRIVILEGE THEY ARE NOT SAYING THAT YOU DON’T HAVE ANY PROBLEMS
THEY ARE SAYING YOU DO NOT HAVE THE SPECIFIC PROBLEMS THAT COME FROM OPPRESSION
THIS IS NOT A DIFFICULT CONCEPT
“They are so damn ‘intellectual’ and rotten that I can’t stand them anymore….I [would] rather sit on the floor in the market of Toluca and sell tortillas, than have anything to do with those ‘artistic’ bitches of Paris.” — Frida Kahlo
Depression is hard to understand, because it is not a consistent state. Depression is rather like a virus, but like a virus, it has its manageable days and its acute, life-threatening flare-ups. You can be in a depression and still laugh at a friend’s joke or have a good night at dinner or manage low-level functioning. You grocery shop and stop to pet a puppy on the corner, talk to friends in a café, maybe write something you don’t hate. When this happens, you might examine your day for clues like reading tea leaves in a cup: Was it the egg for breakfast that made the difference? The three-mile run? You think, well, maybe this thing has moved on now. And you make no sudden moves for fear of attracting its abusive attention again.
But other times…
Other times, it’s as if a hole is opening inside you, wider and wider, pressing against your lungs, pushing your internal organs into unnatural places, and you cannot draw a true breath. You are breaking inside, slowly, and everything that keeps you tethered to your life, all of your normal responses, is being sucked through the hole like an airlock emptying into space. These are the times Holly Golightly called the Mean Reds.
I call it White Knuckling it.”
"But the stigma of depression is that it comes with the sense that you shouldn’t have it to begin with. That it is self-indulgence or emotional incompetence rather than actual illness."
“When it’s White Knuckle Time, you will have to remind yourself to stand in the middle of the subway platform, well away from the edge.”
“There is an undertow to depression. It doesn’t take you all at once. It leaves you with some false sense that you are coping. That you are in control. That you have the shore still well in sight, until, at some point, you raise your head to find yourself all alone, battered by rough seas with absolutely no idea which way you should swim.”
Jesus, every damn word of this post. It’s remarkable.