Luxetips Beauty! Road to Essence: My Black Is Beautiful-Beauty In Action!
Change can be good or bad. It all depends on your perspective.
This year the Essence Music Festival is celebrating 20 years of music, self-empowerment seminars, and community. The Essence Music Festival was started 20 years ago by Essence Magazine, the premier luxe magazine targeted to women of color, and takes place yearly in New Orleans. Festival goers enjoy musical acts ranging from jazz, hip-hop, soul, R&B, and pop. This year the legendary Prince is the headliner and it is the must attend event this 4th of July weekend.
My Black is Beautiful (MBIB), is a sponsor of the Essence Music Festival and is celebrating 20 years of Essence with the “Beauty In Action” #BIAJourney challenge in partnership with nationally renowned transformational expert, Lisa Nichols. The “Beauty In Action” #BIAJourney challenge encourages women and girls to show their “beauty in action” by sharing what encourages them to believe that beauty is more than skin deep. At MBIB, women and young girls across the country are encouraged to define their own beauty every day.
One of the themes of the challenge is “self-acceptance” and feeling beautiful inside out. My own personal journey of self-acceptance and feeling beautiful inside out as a been a long but a transforming experience.
Growing up I struggled with loving my brown skin. Although my parents told me I was beautiful, I didn’t love my skin. As an child, it seemed to my adolescent mind that girls with lighter skin were getting all of the praise and attention, while those of us with darker skin were not.
My angst about my skin grew as I became a teenager. Despite being a cheerleader, on the track team, and at the top of my class, I still felt inadequate. I longed for lighter skin and longer hair to attract the most popular boys. It didn’t help that I had an acne problem and my Mom constantly tried to find a solution to treat my acne with frequent over the counter products and dermatology visits.
By the end of high school, the acne was under control, but I still did not feel comfortable in my skin. However, all of that changed when I chose to attend a Historically Black University (HBCU) in Florida. The minute I stepped on campus, I saw all types of beautiful black women with skin in varying shades of brown. These girls were confident and loved their skin. More importantly, skin color was not an issue with the men or women on campus. It seemed as if the HBCU environment gave us the freedom to “just be” and not be obsessed with skin color. We could all love and appreciate our beautiful skin freely. The most wonderful thing about that environment is that everyone, regardless of how light or dark your skin is, is lauded for their beauty. Constantly hearing the words “you are beautiful” or “your skin is gorgeous” everyday is a uplifting and transformative experience. And the most beautiful thing is that you give the love back.
My HBCU experience gave me confidence to love my own unique self inside and out. I begin to love my beautiful brown skin while also learning how to ultimately love myself and just to be happy with who I am.
I am proud to represent MBIB as a My Black is Beautiful Social Media Correspondent for the Essence Music Festival. Be sure to visit MBIB website: http://ow.ly/yzYjL, Visit MBIB on Facebook: http://ow.ly/yzYoc and join the conversation on social media by using the #BIAJourney hashtag on social media during Essence Festival weekend.
I hope to see you there!
Disclaimer: “I am a Niche Parent Network & Conference influencer and received compensation for this post and to attend Essence Festival as a My Black is Beautiful Social Media Correspondent. All opinions are my own.”