Tiwa Savage posted a picture of herself online recently, using the words ”brown skin” and how she didn’t see black women while growing up. And although ”brown skin” is debatable in the context of semantics and ethnicity, we can all agree that the world today has been shaped by eurocentric standards of beauty where black women, often, have to ”blend in” by bleaching their skin in order to be more accepted and desirable.
Growing up I didn’t see many brown skin women to look up to, we changing that narrative now ❤️👑⚔️ pic.twitter.com/mGyvQeh5CG
— Tiwa Savage (@TiwaSavage) June 19, 2019
And this trend has pervaded through the media and pop culture – it’s in the films and music videos we consume and even commercials. Granted, all types of skin colour should be celebrated and appreciated, but refusing to acknowledge how white/light skin is given more access and prioritised in our society over dark skin would be tone-deaf. Not to mention the harmful messaging that destroys self-worth.
Tiwa Savage is one of the most exciting and talented pop artistes of our generation, and although she’s been problematic in the past with her politics on feminism and equal rights for women, I like that she’s aware of her massive platform and using it to shape perceptions and worldviews, especially for the younger generation of women that would love to follow in her footsteps.
Savage grew up in the UK while trying to work out her music, and so her experience about not seeing as much dark skinned women as role models or mentors is coming from a valid place. Also, I like that she’s comfortable in her (dark) skin and being the much-needed representation in our media and pop-cultural space.