Health News of Saturday, 19 July 2014

Source: The Finder

Skin bleaching, craze for women

EVEN though skin bleaching or toning is said to be dangerous to the human health, it is still the favourite pastime of some women, particularly female celebrities – both local and international.

However, for fear of losing millions of their followers because a large section of society does not approve of skin lightening, these celebrities have always been dodgy on the subject.

The likes of Yvonne Nelson, Gifty Osei, Daddy Lumba, Nasara of Ghana’s Most Beautiful Fame, Nicki Minaj, Michael Jackson, have all been linked to bleaching.

Everyone, regardless of being a man or woman, wants to have a flawless, smooth-skin tone. Skin bleaching can be a good option to get rid of the black spots or any other type of spots on the skin to give one that flawless touch, but the process is not free from side effects. Some of the products are rather very harmful and cause skin cancer too.

Skin whitening, skin lightening and skin bleaching refers to the practice of using chemical substances in an attempt to lighten skin tone or provide an even skin complexion by lessening the concentration of melanin (natural dark skin pigment).

These chemical substances are used by mostly women and on a lower scale, men.

Bleaching options in recent times have become very complicated with plenty of options available in the market (variety of creams and now pills) leaving the customers confused.

It is believed in some parts of the world, especially Africa, that light skinned people portray beauty, richness and success. In some parts, dark complexioned people are considered below standard and so people opt for skin whitening or bleaching creams, pills and other products.

Not even the popular saying ‘Black is beautiful’ has worked on the minds of most people who decide to bleach their skin.

Studies reveal that most of the young boys and girls prefer using skin whitening products so that they get a good status in their group, family and society. In fact, some commercials shown on the television also portray the same thing.

Some men are also believed to prefer light skin ladies to those dark in complexion the reason some women bleach. But what will it profit a woman to bleach her skin for a man?

There have been several calls for women to put a stop to bleaching and be grateful for their God-given skin colours, but all that seem to have fallen on deaf ears.

Currently, Ama K. Abebrese, a presenter on a local television station, who also doubles as an actress, has added her voice to the anti-bleaching campaign, calling on women to love their natural skin tone and say no to skin bleaching and skin toning.

Together with Nana Ama Mcbrown, Paulina Oduro, and Hamamat, Ama said the campaign is not to point accusing fingers at those who are bleaching, rather to let people understand that we all come in different skin tones and we must love and embrace whatever we are blessed with.