“For a Dark Girl you are quite Pretty”

I would like to start by apologising to all the people that I may have offended with the above title, but this is a subject I feel quite strong about and I just needed to talk about it.

Whilst growing up, I have heard this sentence over a thousand times, both in English and in Tamil and for so long I thought about it and thought about why people say it. I have never been insecure about my skin colour and for those who know me personally, I have never complained about my skin colour either. I am comfortable in my skin, and personally I wouldn’t want to be any other colour.

The reason why I am talking about this now, even though I have heard this comment so many times before, is because I felt that it was time to put a stop to these types of comments and even though, me alone can’t make a change, I do hope that people reading this and relating to this will want to put a stop to these kinds of statements by spreading the word, or if YOU, yourself have said this to someone, then maybe you would consider restructuring your sentence and saying things like “you are pretty”, “you are beautiful” rather than “for a dark skin girl you are pretty you know”. Stop!

Recently I went to visit family, and for obvious reasons I cannot say where I went because then people who know me would know who I visited and more importantly this person’s identity is at loose! Anyway, so I went to see family and my aunt as usual analyses me and takes a good look at me and makes her usual comments and I as per usual do the same thing I have been doing for the past 12 years now, which is smile and walk away and just think what is that irritating noise.

So on this particular visit, we were all talking and having conversations about different subjects and bearing in mind, this room was mostly all women and some I don’t really know well, so you can imagine the kind of conversations that were had.  Latest Tamil serial gossip, new trending saree’s and fashion, people’s unreasonable period cycle and the best topic how to become fairer. As the conversation was flowing, and everyone was saying what creams they were using and what home made therapy they were doing, I decided to interrupt and say, “why aren’t you guys happy in your skin?” and to which some people smiled at me, some people said yes they were but still tried to become fairer and some just did not say anything. But my aunt looked at me and said ” you don’t need to worry Cathy, even though you have dark skin, you are pretty”, So at this point,  I am like “aww thanks, I must be really lucky then, coz imagine, if your dark skin and ugly”, she smiled at me not knowing how to react. She didn’t understand I was being sarcastic but she still laughed anyway. So I thought let’s leave it at that and that was the end of that conversation.

This is just one scenario, there have been plenty more over the years but as it’s happened so many times, I’ve stopped keeping count. For as far I can remember, comments like this have been said, just not to me but to many other dark skin girls in my family and within my friends circle, but luckily I come from a strong unit of friends and family and comments like this have never affected us. The problem wasn’t US it was THEM.  But it didn’t’ stop at comments like that, people would often say to me, “because your dark skinned, I don’t think that colour will suit you” or ” you should wear bright colours so that you stand out”. Right then! For generations and generations these are the kind of comments people pass at dark skin people, whether it is a male or a female and this attitude needs to stop.

In my mum’s side of the family, most of them are all light skinned, well actually they all are, except for myself and my aunt (not the aunt I was talking about before, this ones nicer!). My aunt, who is my mum’s sister was a big inspiration to me whilst growing up. She never had restrictions on what colours to wear and she would always wear bright bold colours. Whilst she was growing up, she was made fun of  and people would make similar comments to her about her skin colour but she told me that it never got to her, she just realised that in our community that sort of behaviour was normal and people felt so open to make comments like that. She didn’t care what people thought of her skin tone. In fact, being the only dark skinned sibling among her brothers and sisters, she wanted my mum to have a dark skinned baby, as this baby would be the first grandchild in their family. She prayed so hard that her prayers were finally answered. and a few years later along came me! My sister on the other hand, who is of a fairer skin tone gets all the glorified comments such as “why don’t you act in a movie and become an actress or become a model”!, but there have been times when she’s got the odd comments of “for a Tamil girl, your really light”. I guess I could keep going on.

Personally for me, I have never been insecure about my colour and felt like I needed to be a different tone. I am comfortable wearing this shade of brown and people’s comments and opinions do not impact me. I do not avoid wearing certain colours just because I am dark skin, and I am not scared of being in the sun, over the years I have learnt to look after my skin, not to become fairer but ensure my skin is healthy. I have never used fairness creams and I have not undergone any treatments to become lighter. I have friends who come from various different ethnic groups, who are all different skin tones and none us treat each other different due to our skin tones. I have been fortunate to have good Tamil friends who don’t recognise someones self worth by looking at their skin tone and most of them are beautifully dark skinned.

Colourism and social and economic discrimination based on our skin tone is indulged in our cultures as well as in other South and South east parts of Asia. Colourism and racism are two different things, it can decay among people in the same racial clang, against those of certain ethnicities and castes. People are conditioned into thinking that being dark skin tone is UGLY. A lot of powerful people in the world are dark skinned, Suresh Sriskandarajah, Martin Luther King, Nandita Das, Barack Obama and his wife Michelle Obama, AR Rahman, and even Super Star Rajnikanth. There are probably another 100 names that I have failed to mention, and for that I apologise.

In all honesty I think I just wanted to share my experience and just get this message across. I do not know if my post will make an impact but for those of who do read this, I hope it does change the way we think about skin tones and if you are dark skinned then don’t be insecure and be proud of what your wrapped up in.

Yours truly,

Unapologetically a Dark skinned Tamil Girl xx

Hope you enjoyed the read 



Clarisonic Aria – Review

Amen to the creators of the Clarisonic Face Cleansers

One of the greatest inventions that skin care experts could have created is the range of clarisonic face cleansing brush products and my top favourite is the Clarisonic Aria with 3 different speeds as well as gives the user the choice of gentle cleansing to deep make up removal cleansing.

Just to be extra OCD and go into the fine details of the product, below are the products highlights and what makes the Clarisonic unique from other face cleansing brushes.

  • 3 Speeds (Delicate, Universal, Powerful)
  • Adjustable Pulsing T-Timer
  • Interchangeable Facial Brush Heads
  • Rechargeable and fully waterproof
  • Cleanses so thoroughly, skin care products absorb better

My personal experience of using this product has been above and beyond my expectations. I first started using this product in 2014 when I first bought my Clarisonic Aria from John Lewis. I had read so much about it and heard everyone talking about it I thought why not give it a go. I was feeling very low about my skin then and needed something to motivate me through my bad skin crisis I was going through. So just to fill you in with the background information, I suffered from bad blemishes on my cheeks and forehead as well as suffered from uneven skin tone around my chin and upper lips area, and to top it off I have oily skin. (I would share a picture but all my old pictures have been erased from my icloud so hey ho)

I felt that I always had to wear make up to cover the problems up and would endlessly cake my face with different products to ensure that the blemishes and the uneven skin tone were thoroughly covered. I was using two different shades of concealer and two different shades of foundation as well as using powder to set the make up on my face, as I also suffer from very oily skin and foundation can make your skin seem oily and shiny around particular areas of your face.

My skin care routine during this period of time was, Tea Tree Oil face wash from Body shop and Olay moisturiser. Both of these products helped at the time, well that’s what I thought. The tea tree oil helped to some aspect as it reduced the level of oil that was being produced on my face but I felt like it was ripping the natural oils from my face and after midday, my face would get a little dry and due to this, my makeup would look ashy and grey. So it was then when I was looking into investing into other products and speaking to different people who suffered from similar problems to me as well as looking at different youtube videos and reading different blogs, I came to know that most of these people that I was coming across were all using the Clarisonic.

So it was then on a fine Thursday evening that I decided to ahead and get one for myself. As different peoples skin is different and I am no skin expert, I recommend, if you are going to buy one then buy the one that will be most efficient for your skin and the one that you can financially afford as the prices do range from £120 to £199. I bought mine for £120 and the reason for choosing the Aria for me was having 3 speeds that gave my skin the opportunity to start reacting to the different speeds and helping in the recovery process to better skin, the different speeds allowed you to choose what type of speed you wanted to choose on different areas of the skin, for example a I would use the highest speed around my forehead as I had the most blemishes marks on my forehead. You can use your Clarisonic with any facewash that best suits your face and works well with your skin. I used the Khiels Face wash, but will talk about my Khiels haul on another day!

Enough of the boring stuff, and onto the main details, I started seeing results after around 5 weeks. I had taken a before picture so that I could compare it with a after picture and I had noticed that I got a shade lighter and although my blemishes had not all disappeared, they had reduced and small areas were looking a lot lighter than other areas where I suffered from bad blemishes. As time went on and I was continuing to use this product as part of my morning and evening routine, I started to see more and more of a different and noticed that other people were telling me that my skin is looking healthier and different.

It has been 2 years now since I have been using my Clarisonic Aria and I can honestly say that, 2 years down the line I can say that it has made a massive difference to my skin and the way my skin is today. I am more confident with my skin now and am able to have days where I do not have to wear make up to leave the house and more importantly, I use one shade of foundation, and concealer and just a light powder to rest the make up around m t-zone areas and chin as these areas of my skin still have a tendency to get a little oily half way through the day but is not as bad as before. It has given my skin a finer finish then hand cleansing my skin, I now have softer skin, (baby butt skin), my skin is glowing and looks more radiant even when I am wearing makeup and just like the product said, my skin is absorbing more vitamin C after use.

The Clarisonic Aria has made applying makeup onto my skin smoother and allows me to use small amounts as there is hardly anything I need to cover up on my skin. It is also holiday friendly and its one of most important gadgets I pack when I am going away. I also break out less now, and I do not suffer so badly of uneven skin tone. A minor detail that I forgot to mention before, is that you are able to buy different brush heads for your cleanser. There are brush heads for sensitive skin, dry skin, as well as oily skin and one that is a deep pores cleaning brush head.

I would like to emphasize that I am not a skin specialist and understand that it may work differently on other peoples skin, so I would recommend you speak to a Clarisonic expert, or a skin specialist if you have any skin issues before you buy the product. This product has given me good customer satisfaction and I have recommended it to my friends and family who are now also part of the Clarisonic family!!!, and all their skin types are different but so far they have all loved it. Its user friendly, holiday friendly, small and discreet, easy to clean and charge, and even without charging can last up to 3 -4 days.

Enough of my rant, I just wanted to share my thoughts on the product and hopefully encourage you get your own.

Thank you