Music prod. by Isaac Latham (in collab. w/ Max HC)
Skin whitening or bleaching is the practice of using substances, mixtures, or physical treatments to lighten skin colour. These treatments work by reducing the content of melanin of the skin. Skin tanning on the other hand, is the result of darkened skin from exposure to the sun or ultraviolet radiation. Though the results of these practices are visibly different, their risks are more or less the same. Both bleaching and tanning damage the skin and can cause premature aging (wrinkles), skin cancer, skin thinning and increased risk of infections through the skin. Regardless of their many similarities, bleaching and tanning tend to be framed very differently in the media. Tanning is presented as a fun pass time when the sun is out, while in contrast, skin bleaching is shown as a harmful practice that is rooted in “self-hate”. Though both of these practices involve altering one’s natural skin tone, why is one viewed as a hobby that can be enjoyed by all during the summer, and the other as an act performed only by those who lack self-esteem and do not love themselves. It is important to highlight these similarities because they reveal deep biases that exist within the media. Tanning should not be viewed as better than skin bleaching because, not only does it invovle changing the shade of one's skin, but it also shares many of the same harmful risks.