One thing that has not gone unnoticed over the last 10 years is that Beyonce’s skin has got incrementally lighter. Since the early days when the singer took the lead in Destiny’s Child the melanin levels in her skin have slowly been lowering.
For decades many aspiring showbiz stars have felt that having lighter skin would advance their careers. In some cases this was actually true, and so many african american singers chose to bleach their skin in pursuit of a longer and more illustrious career. The perception that having lighter skin somehow makes one more beautiful still pervades many echelons of the celebrity world. It is for this reason that many stars choose to lighten their skin. In recent times both Beyonce and Rihanna have come under fire for ostensibly lightening their skin.
In 2008 L’Oreal were accused of lightening Beyonce’s skin for an advertising campaign. Many accused L’Oreal of airbrushing the photos. The New York Post said that the “digital lightening” made her “virtually unrecognisable”. Others suggested that L’Oreal asked Beyonce to lighten her skin ahead of the campaign. Either way Beyonce’s skin was uncharacteristically light in the campaign (see below).
Some publishers believe that by whitening her skin, Beyonce is able to appeal to a broader demographic, and her lighter skin has nothing to do with racial superiority/inferiority. According to Huffington Post, “Though she is a black woman – white women can also identify with her.” The post does however go on to quote Bill Duke, one of the co-producers of a renowned documentary called Dark Girls, saying, “Colorism is unfortunately still an issue today. Dark skin is considered less than light skin in the in the minds of many in our community and in the media”
So, the big question is, how did Beyonce lighten her skin? At this stage one can only speculate, as she has never officially admitted whitening her skin, and therefore she has never made any disclosure regarding the use of skin whitening products, whether they be soaps or creams. Some experts have suggested she has undergone surgery after consulting the top dermatologists in the US. Some gossip columns have suggested she has been taking skin lightening pills for many years now. Others seem to think her lighter skin is a result of using Kojic Acid Soap. It is most probable that Beyonce’s skin lightening method will remain a secret indefinitely. The subject is too contentious for a celebrity to go on record with. That is a the simple fact of the matter. For now all we can do is research the market extensively to find the most suitable skin lightening product for our own skin.