Black is Beautiful 

03 Aug Black is Beautiful 


What are current beauty standards? Do you have what it takes for modelling in the beauty industry? Even facial features, flawless skin, luscious locks, petite build, healthy body weight and perfect looking teeth? 

This feedback comes from three different modelling websites, when I search for ideal model features. These features are what society considers beautiful, and worthy of being on the front cover of magazines. Another feature I commonly found was confidence. How could someone ever feel confident when these are the expectations of the beauty standard? What makes those features beautiful? Why aren’t unique facial features, imperfect skin, natural hair, the build you’re blessed with and your natural teeth considered beautiful? 

Dating all the way back to 300 B.C in Ancient Greece, the ideal woman is stated to have ‘light skin’. Han Dynasty; 220 A.D ‘pale skin’. Italian Renaissance; 1400 ‘fair skin’. All the way up to the 1990s; ‘translucent skin’. The beauty standard is so in favour of white people that it’s ideal to have skin so light you can see through it. 65.4% of runway models are white, 14.5% are Hispanic and the smallest group, 10.6% of runway models are African-American. 

The beauty industry is so toxic and is continuing to show a lack of diversity, making people of colour believe that they’re not worthy of feeling beautiful enough. There is no way that anyone should genuinely believe that the features they get from their ancestors aren’t perfect just the way they are. 

We should celebrate the people of colour who fought for the world as it is today. Embrace yourself and your culture! Black people have spent centuries being told that their facial features are ugly, their natural hair should look different and they’re worthless. But black is beautiful. When I think about the fact that people look at the colour of someone’s skin and judge if they’re pretty or ugly because of it, leaves me at a loss for words. Unfortunate and vile events have happened in the past. Although they should’ve never happened, they did, and can’t be changed. For example when Māori and Polynesians in New Zealand, or African-Americans during the Black Civil Rights movement, fought for equal rights because they were considered inferior due to their skin colour. History shouldn’t have to repeat itself for the future generations. “Black is beautiful” needs to be remembered and repeated for everyone, everywhere.  

Chloe Ivill – Year 11        

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