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Nena: The Evolution of Skin – From Dark Mocha, to Cream Caramel



I was at a wedding recently, a friend from Secondary school got hitched so I ran into old classmates. Most I recognized instantly but there were one or two people I took a slight gasp before I said a quick hello…the change was so dramatic that it needed a pause to digest.

Who wouldn’t gasp when you see someone who was dark chocolate skinned and they are now very light skinned? I wondered what the correct etiquette for addressing the person in question was. Do you say ‘Wow, you look good but you have changed a lot’? Or does your eye just widen in shock but you swallow the quick retort you had on your lips and exchange pleasantries?

As I write, I must admit I am several shades lighter than I was in secondary school which was about fourteen years ago so I can understand changes. As a matter of fact, I am a few shades lighter than I was five years ago. Although I have always been light skinned so nobody opens their eyes wide when I run into them; but I know this for a fact seeing as I have changed foundation colour in recent times. I went from NC45 to NC50. How many shades is that?

I suppose I am a former darker person too. Five years ago, I was at my first job fresh from university and NYSC’s blinding sun (Everyone need intense brightening treatment after NYSC) and could not afford to spend a lot on beauty products so I alternated between Jergens Shea Butter, Naturessence, Clean and Clear toners and St Ives facial scrubs.

Now I have sort of settled down financially and my beauty products reflect this…changing with my increasing financial independence. Hello Clarins, Clinique, Kiehls, regular facials, night creams and intense serums promising all sorts. There was no way I could have remained the same shade. NEVER!

So even if I did not consciously alter my complexion, I can rightly refer to myself as a former darker person? No I do not have black knuckles (and this is only with “razz” toning by the way) but I have had a few people comment on how clearer and fresher my skin…These are close synonyms for toning I now know.

Even more interesting is the question “what cream do you use?”

You see, women can talk about how someone else is getting fairer and yak and abuse till tomorrow but the truth is they really want to know what they are using and how they can lay their hands on it.

This may be presumptuous but in my experience it is so. This is buttressed by the fact that most beauty products of women I know contain the magical words…skin brightening, skin toning, promotes even toned complexion, skin clarifying and more.

I write this because as an avid reader of Bellanaija, I have come across countless comments on the skin tone of many of the individuals featured. Some people get flack more than others, I suppose these are the original FDP’s where the change is so obvious people have to scream out in astonishment but let’s be honest with ourselves.

How many women can beat their chest and say that they have not been bitten by the toning bug? Before you knock someone else down, can you please make sure you are not subconsciously or even consciously doing the same?

Photo Credit:


  1. triple o!

    December 23, 2013 at 2:18 pm

    TONING IS NOT BLEACHING!!!! For heaven’s sake, stop
    misusing the term! ” In cosmetics, skin toner or simply toner
    refers to a lotion or wash designed to cleanse the skin and shrink
    the appearance of pores, usually used on the face. Toners can be
    applied to the skin in different ways: On damp cotton wool. (most
    frequently used method) Spraying onto the face. By applying a tonic
    gauze facial mask – a piece of gauze is covered with toner and left
    on the face for a few minutes. Users often apply moisturiser after
    toner has dried.” Bleaching is bleaching, skin lightening is
    bleaching, skin peel is bleaching, acid bath is bleaching (Lol!
    Extreme measures) but toming is NOT bleaching!

    • Anon

      December 23, 2013 at 3:01 pm

      When people say they “tone” their skin, they don’t mean
      they are using toners (lotion or wash.) It means they are subtly
      altering the texture, colour and appearance of their skin with some
      cream and/or soap. From yoyo’s post below; “so, getting a few
      shades lighter or having clearer skin does not have to mean one is
      bleaching” – I agree but many people will disagree. I remember
      listening to Mrs. Alakija’s interview last year and she said she
      tones her skin and she doesn’t bleach. Funmi Ajila too says the
      same thing even though she said she uses Fair and White.

    • Pauline

      December 23, 2013 at 4:16 pm

      Fair n white is a bleacher. They do not have their cream content on the cream pack but if you look up their company product it contains hydroquinone. The soap does not however which is why they are comfy enough to enumerate the content. Then the smelll?? Nahhhhh…lolz so i guess pipo bleach using fair and white without knowing.

    • Lolade

      December 23, 2013 at 3:01 pm

      thank you jare.

    • Bennie

      December 23, 2013 at 3:23 pm

      Thank you very much. I don’t know why Nigerians misuse the word toning. Toning your skin is not lightening it. Skin lightening is what it is ranging from less intense to very intense.


      December 23, 2013 at 5:06 pm

      Gbam!!! Thank you. Only thing is there is no need explaining this to Nigerians because most of them don’t get it. In Naija toning means something diff.

    • Chic

      December 23, 2013 at 10:07 pm

      Nigerians really misuse a lot of words another one that bugs me is using the term “resuming” when referring to someone who is starting a new job and using “she is my customer” when referring to a service provider (market woman, hairdresser etc)

    • JACKIE

      December 24, 2013 at 2:06 am

      DISHONEST ARTICLE – MAC NC50 is darker than MAC NC 45!…
      say what you want to say of bleaching without telling

    • AA

      December 27, 2013 at 5:05 pm

      LOL!!! I thought I was the only one that saw that! But seriously though, taking care of your skin and evening out its appearance is not bleaching. I don’t know why the writer is trying to load
      every woman on the “bleaching bus”. If you bleach, do you! Who cares? I don’t! But just be aware of the consequences and be ready to deal with it and don’t make dark skinned women feel less adequate because they don’t look like you.

    • Chigbo

      December 24, 2013 at 11:06 pm

      Bella Naija just opened a can of worms with this article…
      Live and let live people!!

  2. Unisex

    December 23, 2013 at 2:18 pm

    How many women can beat their chest and say that they have
    not been bitten by the toning bug? Before you knock someone else
    down, can you please make sure you are not subconsciously or even
    consciously doing the same? I CAN BEAT MY CHEST I NEVER USE TONER,
    BLEACHING, SKIN LIGHTING CREAM. I use Astral moisturising cream/
    shea butter since I was 2 yrs old and I use to date.

    • Lolade

      December 23, 2013 at 2:34 pm

      oya, here is your medal!

    • Iris

      December 23, 2013 at 4:17 pm

      Ah ah! But the writer asked us na. I too have never “been bitten by the toning bug.” Now I personally don’t care whether a person bleaches or not even though I find comments about it hilarious, but I don’t think she’s describing the same thing.

    • Blessmyheart

      December 23, 2013 at 9:53 pm

      Lol. I can also beat my chest o. I’ve always been light-skinned and I’ve never used any toning, bleaching or lightening cream. One of my cousins always say I look darker whenever she sees me but who cares? That’s just me though, to each his own.

    • gena

      October 13, 2014 at 8:33 pm

      Erm…. check the context of shea butter…
      Contains active contenrs of lightening skin.. vitamin c and b3..
      So u are guilty my frd of subconciously lighteibg your skin

  3. Gusty's Blog

    December 23, 2013 at 2:22 pm


  4. yoyo

    December 23, 2013 at 2:22 pm

    NC45 to NC50..that means you went a shade darker no? NC45
    is lighter than NC50 babes. Anyways, i do not agree. some womens
    skins get better with age because they know how to take care of
    their skins. Secondary school (especially boarding) isnt a good way
    to know someones real skin tone as people are usually under the
    sun. So, getting a few shades lighter or having clearer skin does
    not have to mean one is bleaching….however if the skin tone
    change is dramatic ie chocolate tone to light skin then that person
    is definitely bleaching. Some babes dont get it. bleach all you
    want but that wouldnt make you an attractive lady. havent u seen
    ugly light skinned girls? i know i have. people should focus on
    getting healthy radiant skin rather than that bleached pale
    look…love me some brown sugar. ps: im looking forward to seeing
    how bleachers wrinkle with age hehehe

  5. damilola

    December 23, 2013 at 2:23 pm

    This is so true, we have all been bitten by the tonning

  6. goldfinch

    December 23, 2013 at 2:26 pm

    Ok I have to say that I must be the only woman in the world
    who doesn’t use all these facials and creams. I just use a
    moisturizer for my body and I’m good to go. At night, I only use
    Nivea Cleansing milk to clean my face/makeup especially around my
    eyes. I always ask myself if I’m doing things right when I go to
    ladies bathrooms and see all sort of orisirisi oils and cream. Do
    they really use all those things?

    • Aprilberry

      December 23, 2013 at 4:35 pm

      LMAO @ do they really use all these things” my sister im confused too, i keep asking myself that question all the time i go into a chics bathroom, makes me feel like im not yet a babe.

  7. Lolade

    December 23, 2013 at 2:50 pm

    I like this article. This lady clearly cares about her skin
    and is using good products to look after her complexion. I hate
    when people make other feel bad because they are using products to
    even out their complexion. There is a fine line between taking care
    of your skin to maintain a bright and even complexion and outright
    bleaching. For me, the fundamental difference is that one is
    maintenance of a natural complexion and the other is altering your
    complexion into an unnatural state. The latter usually involves
    abusing harsh chemicals like hydroquinone and mercury (a very toxic
    chemical which is actually banned worldwide). The funny thing is
    that hydroquinone is actually a legitimate dermatological
    treatment. Its meant to be used to remove hyperpigmentation (excess
    pigment caused by scarring and other skin trauma including sun
    damage).Its to be used for short periods of time (6 weeks or so)
    along with sunscreen. Not continuous use. As for terminology, I
    dont know anything about toning etc. I know ladies who outright
    bleach but call it ‘toning’. I think the term has been abused.
    People like to deceive themselves and others by using different
    terminology but if you are on a campaign to alter your natural skin
    tone with the use of harmful chemicals, you are bleaching and that
    is very dangerous. There is a generation of Nigerian ladies between
    the ages of 55-65 who have terrible skin legions and who have had
    to treat skin cancer as a result pf using harmful creams for a
    prolonged period. Best to be sensible.

    • waka waka

      December 23, 2013 at 3:04 pm

      Lol Lolade, we wrote the exact same thing though your post
      was more eloquent 🙂

  8. Thelma

    December 23, 2013 at 2:59 pm

    Goldfinch it’s not only you. Dear poster I’m one of those
    who can beat her chest and say I haven’t been affected by the bug.
    Presently I’m using ori (Shea butter) and I sometimes use Vaseline.
    I’m dark skinned but fortunately I’ve been blessed with good skin.
    I have absolutely no problem with anyone who tones or bleaches or
    whatever. Provided it’s done well. Personally I just want something
    that makes my skin look healthy.

  9. waka waka

    December 23, 2013 at 3:00 pm

    Nigerians! We are forever trying to make ourselves feel
    better….no, skin toning or correction of scars, dark pigmentation
    due to injury, acne and so on is not the same as skin bleaching. It
    is okay to take care of your skin. In fact, toning is recommended
    as part of an every day skin care regime. It is however, not okay
    to completely change your complexion to fit someone else’s idea of
    beauty. The latter is skin bleaching but the former isnt. Dark
    skinned girls are forever trying to make themselves feel better by
    saying everyone tones. Most light skinned women need toners and/or
    very mild skin lightenong creams to maintain their skin and deal
    with stubborn dark spots that will not go away on their own. They
    use them on that particular spot not generously applied all over
    the face and/or body. In fact, doctors sometimes prescribe said
    creams for very bad and visible scarring. Not the same as someone
    going from dark to pale skinned abeg. Stop trying to put everyone
    else in the bleaching boat to make yourself feel better. Bleaching
    ur skin is very different from picking up a lightening cream to
    target a particular spot. Also, please bear in mind that toners
    even out skin tone and tighten pores, they dont lighten your
    complexion! End of rant!

    • Lolade

      December 23, 2013 at 3:45 pm

      great minds think alike, girl! 🙂

  10. ms lala

    December 23, 2013 at 3:01 pm

    Am chocolate skin toned and love my skin colour..can’t
    imagine being light skin its not me..and yes its hella awkward when
    u see a girlfriend who was Lauryn Hill dark and is now Lauren
    London yellow. odikwa one kind..and i do say it out ” girl u look
    mighty yella, what happened”

  11. M

    December 23, 2013 at 3:03 pm

    Not feeling the write-up..great topic though.MHO.

    El escritor parece tan por todas partes que no puedo comprender,por el momento no dejar el trabajo Diario.

  12. do-good

    December 23, 2013 at 3:10 pm

    Great, honest article.

  13. Anonymissie

    December 23, 2013 at 3:14 pm

    same here, i have never used a tone or bleaching cream. I
    was using Lubriderm and recently started using Bodycology, guess
    i’, going back to Lubriderm . Btw i came here thinking the article
    was gon be about how to maintain your skin colour or smfin, i’m
    dissapointed sha

  14. Ewa

    December 23, 2013 at 3:25 pm

    How many women can beat their chest and say that they have not been bitten by the toning bug? Nena, I can beat my chest o.. I make my body cream myself: A mixture of Unrefined Ori (Shea Butter), Unrefined Cocoa Butter, Lily of the Desert Aloe Vera gel , pure sweet almond oil and organic avocado oil.. All whipped together.. it hasn’t failed me. I love my dark skin the way it is.

    • LL

      December 23, 2013 at 8:25 pm

      Ewa please where do you buy/get your unrefined cocoa butter? Thanks in advance

    • Ewa

      December 24, 2013 at 9:12 am

      @LL i purchase from

    • Mariaah

      December 24, 2013 at 9:58 am

      Ys oo.. Please we are waiting.. Thank you..

    • Ewa

      December 24, 2013 at 11:58 am

      @Mariaah i purchase from

  15. Laide

    December 23, 2013 at 3:31 pm

    Please if going 3 shades darker doesn’t make u a bad person, why is it the reverse when you go 3 shades lighter. I honestly want to know

  16. Joan85

    December 23, 2013 at 3:34 pm

    I haven’t been bitten by the toning bug o. I went from NW45 to NC50. Does that mean I have “toned” or “bleached” my skin? Nehi nehi…I moved away from the harshness of naija sun, started using only Vaseline cocoa butter lotion from Walmart, and alas, I’m lighter lol.
    This article sha 🙂

  17. merci

    December 23, 2013 at 3:40 pm

    just joined the crew of those using shea butter, really nice for the harmattern weather. i used to be previously bothered about the smell but no longer. in general ladies should appreciate their complexion more.

  18. yoyo

    December 23, 2013 at 3:47 pm

    Two things naija babes need to get over….

    1. skin tone
    2. American/british accent.

    If you lived in Jand for many years and come back speaking with an accent…people will you are fake and your accent is put on

    like bitch wtf am i meant to sound like? someone who lives in ajegunle? FOH!

    • Iris

      December 23, 2013 at 4:29 pm

      I’m not quite sure what Ajegunle people apparently sound like to you, but if someone is criticising your accent (rightly or wrongly) they probably expect you to sound like a regular Nigerian who speaks without your accent reflecting any particular tribal inflections eg strong igbo or yoruba accents etc. Essentially you’ve implied that if your accent is “Nigerian”, it is unpolished and unsophisticated. Toke Makinwa said something similar on radio in reference to people talking about her accent (“am I supposed to sound like a savage?”) Do Nigerians in Nigeria sound like savages? Only God knows what savages sound like. I know this post is not about her before I get attacked; I’m using her to illustrate my point.

    • yoyo

      December 23, 2013 at 5:10 pm

      Nope…that isnt what i mean. What does a regular Nigerian accent sound like anyway? I used ajegunle because i assume people who live there would sound different…just as people who live in poland do sound different. My point is, YES i am nigerian but i have a british accent cos i lived there for majority of my formative years..that is expected…why is that such a problem? once i live in Nigeria for about 7 more years im sure i will have a nigerian or lagos accent whatever that is..i bet no one in england will have a problem with that when i return would they? why not though? because it is common sense.. my english friends who lived most of their lives in SA sound South african not english.

      Lets face it. Nigerians have a bloody complex. once someone has an accent they have an issue with it..people need to get real. On this blog people have all sorts of definitions for people who are meant to have an accent..they say if you were not born in england and went there for A levels at 15 (even though you may have moved back at 32) then you have no business sounding english..urgh! so annoying…that 17 bloody years…but you expect someone to sound ‘nigerian’ (whatever that means)…People need to stop this crap! its rubbish. always looking for ways to look down on or segregate people.. accent, skin tone, status, secondary school attended, stay at home mum or working mum etc etc…let people be..geez!

  19. uju

    December 23, 2013 at 4:02 pm

    lol….abeg where i go find the clarins,gone round palms in search…thats one good product there..

  20. Mariaah

    December 23, 2013 at 4:15 pm

    Here I am Miss Mariaah never, ever toned/bleached my skin. I use Dove lotion when I feel like but my staple “cream” is shea-butter. People can not believe it when I tell them. My cousin (a guy was like O__O when he asked for my “cream” last time he slept over and I whipped out my ori jar!! 😀 😀

    Not saying I am not pushed to some extent. A friend who met me when I was fresh from “the abroad” as at 2011, saw me last weekend and went “M, you’ve changed! Your skin no longer glitters” I just laughed. My skin was WOW when I got back but ABJ sun as we know does not play. 🙂 I love my skin still.. 🙂

  21. Thatgidigirl

    December 23, 2013 at 4:16 pm

    we have beaten this horse, resurrected it and beaten it to death again! Kilode BN? if it isn’t husband or man wahala its bleaching accusations! Do you need us commenters to contribute ideas for topics? we would gladly contribute o

    • 5'5

      December 23, 2013 at 6:31 pm

      hahahah. love you

  22. Naveah

    December 23, 2013 at 5:33 pm

    OHHHHHHHHHHHHH look at the En Vogue when they were at peace with one another. Bellanaija using another American celebrity picture without permission again.

  23. Onye

    December 23, 2013 at 6:09 pm

    I used to hate my dark skin. But now I thinks it’s beautiful. Also in the comments I just learnt something. So toners are what shrink pores.

  24. LL

    December 23, 2013 at 6:34 pm

    For the fact the cream contains hydroquinone all na
    BLEACHING whether toning your skin or not. At times I just wish
    people will read and know the chemical compounds that are contained
    in their creams. Nothing better a healthy and better cream than
    organic cream i.e shea butter. I use shea butter as in ori and I
    can tell you my skin and hair cannot thank me enough.

    • LL

      December 23, 2013 at 6:35 pm

      ** There’s nothing better than*

    • Christy

      June 26, 2019 at 11:56 am

      Does the ori darken you or did are u mixing it up?

  25. nene

    December 23, 2013 at 6:36 pm

    this whole bleaching thing has been overflogged. it is
    happening. there is nothing we can do except teach people to love
    their skin, and stop teasing people for being dark

  26. MADAM

    December 23, 2013 at 7:00 pm

    NC45 is lighter than NC50 dear writer:p

  27. lael

    December 23, 2013 at 8:08 pm

    Lol!! i saw an old friend on facebook recently too, i was so stunned!!. Had to go back and forth on her pictures. I’m glad i haven’t been bitten tho.. i ONLY use the normal baby Vaseline jelly from walmart/superstore… it suits my skin so well, i don’t even use facial products. Thank God for good skin lol…

  28. Tomisin

    December 23, 2013 at 9:47 pm

    I can beat my chest that i have never bleached and i am so fair that some people argue with me that i am ibo. i tha k God everyday for the kind of good skin i have. i use lux/premier/dettol/delta for bathing and vaseline/shea butter for my cream (depends on what i can find). I’ve been telling myself lately that if i dint know better, i would say i was bleaching. Personally, i have nothing against people who bleach cos it’s their skin provided it’s clean.

  29. Ireti Arewa

    December 23, 2013 at 10:12 pm

    Interesting piece. Funny in parts actually. I love that we can all speak from the experience we’ve lived – by seeing, hearing or otherwise. We can all relate to this piece – we know/have heard of/could be bleaching/toning/peeling/etc culprit. I find this piece to be very premature in its judgement (Nena knows if unconsciously or with dedicated intent) that everyone with dark knuckles[knees/ankles] are razz. Could being born with it be such an alien concept?

    • More

      December 24, 2013 at 2:15 pm

      chop knuckle my dear. I have dark knuckles and knees and I’m neither bleaching nor toning. I simply haven’t got the time.

    • tybay

      December 25, 2013 at 10:06 am

      Thank you Ireti! My thoughts exactly! My skin tone is very even as a dark/chocolate/mocha/brown sugar skinned woman. Elbows, knees and ankles all blend with my skin. I use a mixture of shea butter and oils- jojoba, castor, coconut oils. My knuckles though are visibly darker in color than my fingers. This generally runs in my family save for one of my elder brothers and sisters who are lighter in complexion (Mum is light skinned and Dad is dark skinned). Would it be right to conclude that I bleach or look razz, when one has no clue as to my skin care regimen? Mind you, I don’t even have a beauty regimen for my face save from washing clean with water and soap (Ose dudu or St Ives ), because I hardly use foundation, primer and all that “heavy makeup.”

  30. Merciful1

    December 24, 2013 at 12:23 am

    Dear BN family help me. I am addicted to this site but
    don’t comment often cos each time I will see a comment similar to
    what I would say and I will just smile and agree with the
    commenter. I need your help. I have a bad brown skin with spots
    dotted everywhere. I have been using Makari for bath cream and Fair
    and White as a lotion for the skin. Sometimes I would divert to
    HT26. Today I met someone on my way to work and she said you are
    getting real light, please don’t spoil your colour. Cos of that
    remark, I figured Makari can be the cause and on my way back, I’ve
    got Palmolive bath cream with oilive oil and aloe vera. I intend to
    quit using the Makari but continue alternating my Fair and White
    and sometime HT26. I always add some virgin olive oil in the fair
    and white or HT26 with the aim of softening it incase it’s too
    harsh for my skin. Personally, I like natural skin, but the spots
    are pushing me too far. Can someone pls tell me what to do to
    remedy this situation? N.B. the marks are fading away, but I don’t
    want the bug. Please help a fellow sister, seems this post sited
    me. Thanks in advance

    • Aibee

      December 24, 2013 at 11:00 am

      From one of the comments above, it would appear that your Fair n White lotion may also have some bleaching agents. I’d suggest you Google the ingredients on your skin products and see which one has the bleaching agent. Meanwhile, about the dark spots on your skin, I’d advice you consult a trained dermatologist and not rely on crowd-sourced opinions. What works for one person may be harmful to you.

    • I'm Rick James Bitch!

      December 24, 2013 at 10:46 pm

      Hey Merciful1. For starters. Abs. Face. Body are made in the kitchen. We are what we eat. Try to eat as clean as possible and work out dirty(sweating cleanses out your pores). Choose whole foods and lots of fruits and vegetables which hydrate and nourish the body(limit your oil intake). I can’t stress this point enough: HYDRATE HYDRATE HYDRATE. Drink 4 litres of water a day/ drink until your urine is as clear as water. And as a general rule of thumb, try to stay away from products that say light or tint. In my experience they are mostly for Caucasian skin. These products tone their skin, but I find it has the reverse effect on darker skin. I don’t know what city you live in, so I wouldn’t know exactly what products you are readily available to you, but I’d suggest a moisturizer with a very high spf and Bio oil. Contrary to popular opinion, black skin does get sunburnt. If you able to find Neutrogena Healthy Defense Daily Moisturizer SPF 50, give it a go. Neutrogena is generally known for its stellar products for all skin types. If you can, have a facial every week. You don’t have to go to a spa. You can find a product that works for you after careful research. You can even make your own marvellous concoction and pile it on for 2 hours to rejuvenate your skin. Btw Aztec Secret Indian Healing Clay isn’t half bad, it just might be the right fit. Lastly, don’t expect microwave results. Good things take time. Don’t sit down and wait for any part of your life to materialize, chase them all simultaneously and one day you will wake up and find that you have it all. MTFBWY!

  31. African Man

    December 24, 2013 at 5:39 am

    This is embarrassing. Call it toning or whatever you want,
    the point is you’re lightening your skin. There is no reason why
    anyone should get lighter. Light skinned people get darker with
    age…that I understand. The level of inferiority complex I see
    here is beyond belief. No wonder half-caste girls chance you babes

    • TA

      December 24, 2013 at 12:25 pm

      God bless you real good! 🙂
      10000 likes for this comment

    • African Man

      December 25, 2013 at 8:51 am

      Amen, and you too!

  32. cibul

    December 24, 2013 at 9:25 am

    Thing is, pimples and acne scars cause a lot of damage, both to the skin and to a person’s confidence. In the process of treating the scars, most medications end up lightening the skin to fade the scars, I.e, melanin inhibition, and voila! Bleaching is what its called. But take note: its not always conscious. Btw, 7 yrs ago, I was much darker than I am now, but talk abt trekking under the hot Lagos sun frying me to and from school for many yrs! I’m abt 2 shades lighter now, I think, and even tho I once used a hydroquinone treatment for my spots, I’m back to normal now and enjoying great skin. See, hydroquinone is a short term treatment, when used on a very long term, that’s bleaching

  33. memebaby

    December 24, 2013 at 10:05 am

    having just graduated from high school 5 years ago. I know a girl who was dark skin (like the rest of her siblings) and she’s lighter than me now (i think I’m the same complexion as omotola jalade)..babes never left the country so I can’t assume the weather changed her skin! i dont know why people spoil their skin all in the name of looking lighter. I skin has gotten lighter over the years too. I moved to canada immediately after graduation and there’s been some changes, especially in the winter. thats when my friends ask what lotion I use (st ives body lotion and apricot scrub, artistry facial wash, balancing toner, and facial cream, fit me liquid foundation, and clinique powder) those have been my body products since 2009. So it all depends on the weather and your diet. But those with the bleaching do not damage your rich skin. I would hate to see my younger sis bleach her beautiful dark skin to look like a red/green bleached face!

  34. sos

    December 24, 2013 at 11:27 am

    Some people who bleach their skin are the greatest hypocrites! calling it all sort of touche names and making all sort of excuses…………and telling us to beat our chest if we have not been beaten by the bleaching bug,,,,,,,,,,,,,what crap? If you are doing something and you can not proudly beat your chest and own up to it! that tells me that, there is something seriously wrong with bleaching!

  35. Titi

    December 24, 2013 at 1:32 pm

    Fyi guys, if you go to a dermatologist here in the US with skin pigmentation issues, they’d most likely recommend topical drugs containing hydroquinone. It is the most effective for correcting this problem. What the issue is is that people abuse it and use it long term as a daily cream and without drs supervision.

  36. mma

    December 24, 2013 at 1:48 pm

    Sorry to derail. I just started transitioning from relaxed to natural hair and ive not gotten any good advice concerning natural hair apart from on line. Plz does anybody know any natural hair stylist or salon.

    • Roselyn

      January 10, 2015 at 9:36 pm

      Mma treat your hair yourself.. you’ll find that in time you’ll end up loving it.. most stylist are not interested in your hair, but your wallet. That explains why we have so many short haired girls in this country

  37. Merciful1

    December 24, 2013 at 1:58 pm

    Thanks @Aibee for our concern. I guess I’ll take your advise. Lots of love, Merry Xmas and a Prosperous New Year

  38. NNENNE

    December 24, 2013 at 2:25 pm

    Bleach if that’s what you want but please know the consequences.
    I will look very ugly if I bleach my skin. Takes too much effort …time and money. Beauty is not skin color but features. There are many black people who look more beautiful than whites in any way imaginable.

  39. LOVETH

    December 24, 2013 at 2:35 pm

    Argan oil is the best. U need to see my skin,its natural and best for all skin types.

  40. sara

    December 24, 2013 at 9:12 pm

    After she said she was several shades lighter and went from NC45 to NC50 her article became invalid. In primary and secondary school, you are more likely to spend more time outside and get darker. FYI… Most of MAC’s foundation lines are numbered in increments of 5. NC 40,NC 45,NC 50 or NW 40, NW 45, NW 50, NW 55. NC is for those with cool/more yellow undertones and NW is for those with warm/more red undertones.

  41. SOLO ACT

    December 25, 2013 at 12:03 am

    plz africans are not the only ones bleaching but we are the ones making the most NOISE about it! mchew

    • Roselyn

      January 10, 2015 at 9:30 pm

      Thank you ooooo… if you want to bleach, bleach.. it’s your skin anyways I wonder why there is soo much hate for light skinned girl.. people wud roll their eyes and hiss ‘she’s probably bleaching’ e consine you? If you love yourself you won’t find time criticising others because of their skin tone :/

  42. Merciful1

    December 25, 2013 at 4:07 am

    Thanks so very much @I’m Rick James Bitch! for having love and concern for a sister’s looks. I live in Accra, Ghana and won’t mind if you prescribe more products based on my location. I agree with you, I don’t drink as much water. I only drink when I’m very tasty. But I do eat fruits and a balance diet. I don’t joke with what I eat. Thanks for the prescriptions and everything. It’s unfortunate I’ve not understood the meaning of MTFBWY! Thanks once again, Merry Xmas and a Prosperous New Year. Lots of love

    • iba

      January 2, 2014 at 12:35 pm

      MTFBWY means
      May the force be with you aka goodluck
      @ topic i really dont know what to say. I am abit divided on this. On one hand it seems like you are advocating bleaching (which i hate to think is the case) while on the other hand, it seems you are making perfect sense if things are taken literally as you have written.

  43. prim

    December 25, 2013 at 7:08 am

    I am lighter than the average light skinned chic. However, I don’t use toner. When I lived in a very cold American state, I went from being a light skinned chic to almost white babe. The longer I stayed in the US, the lighter my complexion became. People see me now and ask about skin creams I use – well first I am not in the blistering African sun any longer. Second, I have been using an SPF 35-50 moisturizer every morning for the past 10 years. Third, I have been working in an office without direct sunlight for almost 16 years. Fourth, I am not a beach whale. the sun makes me dizzy after about 1 hour of being in harsh sunlight. Fifth, in fact I got sunburned this year for the first time in my life when I visited Arizona. I could not believe it. I never burned in the African sun ever.
    So my people, I no use bleacher or toner. For some reason, I just getting back to the color I was when I was a baby – yes, I was literally near white in those pictures. Cant explain it but not worried. People can go search for some cream to use. Just beware of skin cancer and damage to your epidermis and dermis. What you really need to do to avoid photoaging is to use sun screen whenever you step out of your home.

  44. Asgrl

    December 25, 2013 at 12:19 pm

    Where is the love button. I can’t stress enough the importance of a healthy diet and drinking lots of water!

    Sadly enough, the Nigerian diet has degenerated into soda, more soda, fast food, deserts, alcohol. We are rapidly becoming an obese nation.

  45. Koffie

    December 27, 2013 at 12:32 pm

    Hey guys, I went for orientation camp (nysc) this november in a Northern state n came back very dark. I want to go back to my skin tone. Does anyone have any poast nysc regimen that excludes those harshchemicals? Thanks in advance. Its like I went from Onotola Jalade’s complexion to UcheJombo’s

  46. AA

    December 27, 2013 at 5:12 pm

    I beat my chest with pride. None of my facial products contain any bleaching agents. I am au natural and proud of it. I have not changed my skin tone. In winter, I am lighter and summer time, I am darker.

  47. ec

    December 28, 2013 at 11:21 am

    Finally some honesty. Now can we all quit the hypocrisy? GOD forbid someine told yall the truth

  48. Bosky

    July 29, 2014 at 1:30 pm

    So tell us what is the name of this ur cream I am interested I love to be bright

  49. redbone swirl

    June 4, 2015 at 6:25 am

    My skin is naturally caramel

    thank goodness i dont have to do all this extra shit



  50. prextella

    November 19, 2016 at 9:37 am

    pls cream can give a caramel color

  51. Otchere Akua Amankwah

    January 2, 2017 at 3:31 pm

    Pls what cream would u suggest we use to get caramel skin colour

    • Let it Be

      September 27, 2017 at 1:46 am

      Love your MELANIN! Stop asking for creams to change your skin tone. Just love yourself and take care of your current skin color. Bleaching in Nigeria must stop.

  52. Let it Be

    September 27, 2017 at 2:07 am

    Love your MELANIN! It allows you to age slower than other races of women. However, if you begin to remove the color from skin by using lightening agents you will age quickly. In addition to that if you use bleaching agents you will increase your chances of having skin cancer (melanoma) which is a condition that rarely happens to black people. You were blessed with melanin and denying it by using harsh chemicals on your skin is a SIN! Stop with this “light is right” mentality because it is not. So, ladies cherish what you have. Your melanin comes with advantages to you in health wise aspect and a beauty wise aspect. Chocolate queens love YOURSELF!


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