Archive for the ‘JAMAICA’ Category

BLACK SKINNED BEAUTIES LIKE DIONNE STEPHENS ARE BELIEVING IN THEMSELVES AND OVERCOMING THAT WHITE BARRIER AGAINST BLACK SKIN!:THE JAMAICA GLEANER NEWSPAPER,2004

August 2, 2008

BLACK SKINNED BEAUTY SUPREME!

BLACK SKINNED BEAUTY SUPREME!

from jamaica-gleaner.com

Black beauty
published: Monday | February 16, 2004

CLICK ON: jamaica-gleaner.com
Dionne,a BLACK BEAUTY(PICTURE)
THE JAMAICAN INVASION

JAMAICAN MODELS have always done well overseas and their accomplishments have been well noted in the media. However, in recent years, there has been an overwhelming demand for dark-skinned models – mainly for their exotic look. Ethnic models such as Naomi Campbell from Britain, Alek Wek, Liya Kebede and Yasmine Warsame from Africa have definitely made their mark in the world of fashion and have paved the way for other dark-skinned beauties such as our own Nakeisha Robinson, Nadine Willis and Jaunel McKenzie.

Lately, other Jamaican black beauties have made an impact in the international fashion scene and one of the modelling agencies that have made this happen is Saint International. Headed by CEO Deiwight Peters, Saint has placed a number of Jamaican models with leading agencies in the fashion capitals of the world such as Milan, London, Paris and New York. The agency has also broken into the South African market, where a number of Jamaican models have been placed doing either editorials, commercials or both. In this week’s issue, Flair focuses on the successes of some of these Jamaican beauties who have stunned the world and are managing to hold their own in a glamorous yet competitive environment.

DIONNE’S A STUNNER

A former web-site administrator of the RJR Communication Group, Dionne Stephens entered the world of modelling two and a half years ago, but was signed internationally by Saint since last June. Standing at 5ft. 9in. tall, Stephens’ charcoal black skin is becoming a favourite among fashion photographers across Europe. She continues on her blazing success trail scoring the cover of one of Spain’s leading fashion magazines Punto H.

The black beauty, who is presently based in London with Profile Models, has also been a favourite among leading European magazines from the start. She has made two appearances in the iconic ID magazine with other high profile magazines such as Bolz, Tense, the South African Marie Claire, Colors, French Connection UK, Look Book, Star Mag among others. She also has an upcoming spread in Trace Magazine, which promises to take her career to yet another level.

In January, Stephens started the year with renowned British designer Ted Baker. She also strutted down the catwalk during London Fashion Week last year for another famous British designer Hamish Marrow and is expected to do so for other clients in this year’s Fashion Week.

LIFE BEHIND THE CAMERA

We spoke to Stephens recently between castings in London via her cellphone and asked her a few questions about her new fabulous life as a model.

FL: How are you finding your new life as a fashion model. Is it glamorous as several persons may think?

Stephens: Before I started modelling, I always assumed as others that it was an exciting lifestyle. Now that I’m getting first-hand experience, I’ve realised that it’s not as exciting as it seems. It’s actually hard and photo shoots are definitely not glamorous while doing them. although the end results may seem so.

FL: What has been your most difficult photo shoot?

Stephens: The hardest shoot for me was while doing the one for Trace Magazine. I was strapped in a harness from the ceiling while holding a pound of iron in my hands. It was quite uncomfortable to say the least.

FL: What has been your most exciting project?

Stephens: I have a small role in a 007 James Bond spoof. It’s actually a French movie in which I am a cocktail waitress in the film. Parts of the movie were shot in the Pinewood Studios in England.

FL: What’s your biggest indulgence since becoming a model?

Stephens: Definitely shoes. I just love them. Sometimes when I get my pay cheque, I head directly to a shoe store. My favourite type of shoes are boots, I love them when they are knee-high with stiletto heels.

FL: Do Europeans warm up to you knowing that you’re a Jamaican?

Stephens: On first meeting me, many persons here think I’m from Ghana or Kenya – not Jamaica. I have to convince them that I’m all-Jamaican. Jamaican music is actually doing very well now and Sean Paul is big in London right now.

FL: Which famous persons have you met since modelling internationally?

Stephens: There are a few persons yes. The ones who stand out readily in my mind are British designer Julian McDonald and international model Alek Wek.

FL: What is one thing you would like to tell your family now?

Stephens: I’d like to tell them not to worry about me as I’m having a great time and they’ll all get a chance to see me soon. Big up to my crew at RJR.

BLACK BEAUTY ANGIE STONE SPEAKS OUT ON ANTI-BLACK SKIN RACISM STILL ALIVE AND KICKING FROM SLAVERY! FROM TASTYCLIPS.COM

July 17, 2008

from tastyclips.com

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ANGIE STONE ON ATI-BLACK SKIN RACISM:THIS BLACK BEAUTY SPEAKS OUT ON THE BRAINWASHING OF SLAVERY STILL VERY MUCH ALIVE TODAY!

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VOL VII, ISSUE II
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Just like in one of her songs, there’s No More Rain these days for ANGIE STONE. This soul queen from Columbia, South Carolina had success with the groups Sequence and Vertical Hold before launching a solo career that led to hit albums Black Butterfly, Mahogany Soul (with the anthem Brotha) and Stone Love. That just wasn’t enough for the fickle music industry. So Stone kept busy in the studio and started acting (TV sitcoms, plays and the film The Fighting Temptations) before signing with the resurrected Stax label to release her latest smash The Art of Love & War.

We learned through her stint on VH1’s Celebrity Fit Club two years ago that she suffered from Type 2 diabetes. “[It] was brought on by Prednisone,” she told Tasty Clips. “I was taking some medication that saved my organs but enhanced the diabetes. I’m hearing that some research was done that said gastric bypass kills diabetes because the disease lives in your stomach. [It’s] under control because I don’t eat like I’m crazy and do what I’m supposed to do most of the time. When you’re a person on a steroid for medication a lot of working out doesn’t help you. It hurts you more than help you because you build muscle and mass. My regiment is joy and love and living life to the fullest. I go bowling two or three times a week and have a routine in my house. I clean instead of having a maid. If I stay active within the space I’m in I’ll be OK.”

These days, Stone serves as a spokesperson for the F.A.C.E. Diabetes campaign, which launched at Chicago’s Salem Baptist Church Children’s Ministry Building. Through a series of practical and sustainable programs in local communities, their goal is to help foster behavioral and attitudinal changes in areas critical to success in managing diabetes such as nutrition/cooking, physical activity, health and overall well-being.

Signing with a smaller label like Stax was a surprise. What made you make that decision? “Cause anyplace was better than J Records at the time. I’d had enough of [them] and I wanted a change. So I went and started from scratch with an independent label which eventually turned into another major situation.” Was J not giving you enough freedom? “Well I always had my freedom. It’s just that they start looking at you like they’re equal to you. When you become a slash artist/producer/mentor/and go-to girl for advice, you start to feel like an employee as well as an artist.” Are you happy with the way you’re being promoted? “Now. It’s getting better. Originally I wasn’t.” The Concord label is basically handling it. “[They’re] still handling it but I don’t think that they really have a clue, in terms of this level of success with an artist, of what to do.” Well, you seem to be doing an excellent job. “Guess what? The record is doing it because with very little presence I’m very excited and appreciative that [it’s] moving. Even though the pace is slower than normal, it’s moving nonetheless with very little awareness.”

How tough is it in the music industry now if you don’t have a certain look? “Well I think I look fabulous. Have you seen me lately?” I have. John Legend has a new artist Estelle who is considered difficult to promote because of her look. It really comes down to the music, doesn’t it? “It does come down to the music. We have to get out of this fairy tale guideline of looking a certain way. That’s not to discredit beautiful people, but God didn’t make us all look the same way. We all look the way we look. People need to recognize that in this world beauty is only skin deep. The industry is caught up in looks because that’s the way Satan has designed the game to control the mentality of the weaker species. I really feel sad because this young lady has a great record out and not even the relationship with [John Legend] can afford her a better outlook. It tells you that we’re in trouble.” There’s so much more to it and that seems to be gone. “Well, you know it goes back to the very beginning. If you were light skinned you were in, if you were dark skinned you were out. It very well works that way in the industry. You see very [few] dark skinned people on top of the game. Most of the superstars are very fair or mulatto people. You can check your stats. It works that way in the film world too. I have lost almost every single opportunity to star in a film to Macy Gray or Jill Scott because they’re light and I’m dark. I’ve been told so many times that it’s a certain look that they’re looking for. So you can’t even use weight anymore. You can’t use age because everybody’s over 35 that’s running around doing it. It comes down to what is more appealing. I’m only good for the pro political stuff that will afford all of my people from the hood to vote for the right president – or to support whatever because I’m more on their level, so to speak. So to me it hasn’t changed much. Slavery has just taken on a whole new different direction but it’s the same process.”

In addition to concerts, what can we expect from you this year? “I’m actually working on two books right now – [one is] poetry and [the other is] called Life and the Shadows of a Sex Symbol.” Is this biographical? “Hmmm. I won’t say that. There is some real stuff, then there’s some REAL stuff. You have to wait and see. I’m supposed to be working with Robi Reed on something and [also] Tracey Edmonds. I’m still working on a stage project and becoming a producer. I’m always ahead of the game. I have music in my back pocket.”

And apparently it runs in the family. Angie’s daughter Diamond Stone dubbed The Princess of Hip-Hop Soul is hitting the stage of Headliners on a bill led by southern Rock N Soul sensation Joe Tucker on June 14th. Diamond recently added a new title to Angie’s rep: Grandmom!

NIGERIAN COUPLE IN UK CAUGHT SELLING DANGEROUS BLEACHING PRODUCTS TO BLACKS:WE MUST STOP THIS BLACK SELF HATRED ACT OF BLEACHING OUR BEAUTIFUL BLACK SKIN! FROM LIGALI.ORG(UK)

July 12, 2008

BLEACHING LEDS TO SKIN CANCER AND DEATH! BLEACH AND DIE!

BLEACHING LEDS TO SKIN CANCER AND DEATH! BLEACH AND DIE!

THIS SOUTH AFRICAN MAN AND WOMAN ARE REGRETTING USING BLEACHING CREAMS NOW!

THIS SOUTH AFRICAN MAN AND WOMAN ARE REGRETTING USING BLEACHING CREAMS NOW!

THE LONGER YOU USE IT THE WORST YOUR SKIN IS GOING TO GET!

THE LONGER YOU USE IT THE WORST YOUR SKIN IS GOING TO GET!

BLEACHING IS GOING TO AFFECT YOUR SKIN SOONER OR LATER!

BLEACHING IS GOING TO AFFECT YOUR SKIN SOONER OR LATER!

from ligali.org

Speak out!
African people who use harmful using skin whitening and chemical hair straightening products are said to be acting on a legacy of British slavery and the racism borne of colonisation and empire. Others argue it is simply a fashion statement. Which is true?

Couple caught selling poisonous products to African people
Illegal skin poisons seized at Afro Hair and Beauty shop

Sat 6 January 2007

Yinka Oluyemi and her husband Michael have been fined £70,000 for selling illegal and harmful skin products containing excessive levels of hydroquinone to their African customers.

The couple, who have three children and lived in a £725,000 home in Sydenham, earned £1 million selling poisonous skin lightening products. They admitted four counts of selling or offering for sale prescription-only products and six counts of supplying cosmetic goods containing hydroquinone, a chemical that is banned in the UK under the Consumer Protection Act 1987.

The former Black Business Award winners operated from their two cosmetic shops Yinka Bodyline and Beauty Express, in Peckham, south-east London and had received a number of official warnings and a fine in 2001 for selling products containing harmful levels of mercury and hydroquinone. Despite this, in October 2005, the couple were awarded a Black Business Award “for their contributions to the hair and beauty industry”.

In sentencing the couple, Judge Nicholas Philpot described the Oluyemi’s as “hard-nosed business people determined to make money regardless of the danger to public health”. He went on to say that although he felt a custodial sentence would have been appropriate, exceptional personal circumstances persuaded him to suspend a nine month prison sentence. They are also expected to pick up the prosecutions £22,000 legal costs and have been disqualified from being company directors for five years.

Skin lighteners containing hydroquinone has been banned from many european countries because it has been known to cause irreversible skin damage, skin swelling, permanent discolouration and even leukoderma, commonly known as vitiligo. Singer, Michael Jackson is perhaps the most famous person alleged to be suffering from vitiligo with many suspecting that this is due to excessive skin bleaching. The use of mercury in skin whitening products is also thought to cause liver and kidney damage and as well as mercury poisoning. As awareness of the effects of these chemicals increases along, companies are constantly seeking to use other potentially harmful chemicals in their products such as Kojic acid. However, in 2001 a study conducted by the International Agency for Research on Cancer found that kojic acid can be genotoxic (poisonous to organisms by damaging its DNA) to rodents and there was limited evidence to suggest that it can also cause cancer in experimental animals. These chemicals all work by inhibiting the production of melanin. The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHPRA) have also warned that steroid based creams such as Dermovate should not be sold over the counter.

Michael Jackson before and after his excessive skin lightening, hair straightening transformation

BBC downplay Asian involvement

The use of skin lightening products was extensively discussed last Saturday on the community radio station, Galaxy FM. The show’s presenter, Sis Aura devoted most of the popular breakfast show to exploring the underlying issues of this emotive subject and exposing the disproportionate media coverage given to the minimal occurrences of unprincipled African people who engage in the illegal selling of these products whilst the Asian business community, who has a economic stranglehold on the illicit industry, escape criticism. This was affirmed by a debate on BBC London hosted by Vanessa Feltz which launched a discussion about skin lightening following the conviction of the Oluyemi’s but had previously remained silent on the conviction of an Asian family in October 2006 who had also pleaded guilty to selling and supplying unlicensed skin products.

The process of altering skin pigmentation also afflicts Britain’s ethnic majority who increasingly seek a darker skin appearance and a fuller figure through the processes of tanning and cosmetic surgery respectively. Despite the risks of melanoma the growth in the British skin tanning industry belies the practice as a passion of europeans. Many who seek to escape an image of banality do so by browning their skin in an attempt to project a healthy image using intense UV radiation or chemical agents. When a parliamentary colleague quizzed the British politician Peter Hain in the House of Commons about his tanned appearance as mentioned in his interview with The Times entitled “Perma-tan Hain sees light at end of dark days” he responded defensively, stating; “I am afraid I cannot do anything about [the perma-tan], but I shall pass on my African roots and see if that helps the right hon. Gentleman”. Hain of course joins George Hamilton and the racist anti-African Robert Kilroy-Silk as media personalities who are accused of engaging in excessive tanning. Scientists state that europeans who expose their skin to strong sunlight for only a brief period are at a higher risk of developing malignant melanoma, the most dangerous form of skin cancer. Cancer Research UK says that the disease is “almost entirely preventable”.

Beyonce Knowles flaunts her long, blonde hair

LIGALI Comment

The issue of skin whitening is a serious and complex issue which coincide with the notion of African aesthetics and the systematic attack on African identity.

In 2007, when the government are initiating an orgy of cultural self glorification, they and the British public continue to assert that ‘slavery ended a long time ago’. However, African people reject this assertion and highlight that the Maafa and the legacy of racist ideology continues to affect the entire world. One of the enduring legacies of the Maafa is the perpetuation of a colour caste system institutionalised during African enslavement. The British used divide and rule strategy to create factions in unified groups by deliberately giving preferential treatment to one group based on superficial differences. ‘Lighter’ skinned African people, or indeed the dual heritage children born as a result of the extensive and systematic rape by slavers of African women were often afforded marginally better treatment at the hands of their enslavers.

The institutionalisation of an enduring colour caste system across Africa and Asia by the British empire is one of the most horrific expressions of this successful British strategy. The residual outcome of this is present in the western media where African women such as the music entertainer Beyonce are presented as a light skinned, blond woman to promote a cultural aesthetic which is anti-African whilst the successful African entertainer, Michael Jackson, uses chemical agents and invasive surgical operations to entirely suppress all vestiges of his African identity.

The majority of British dramas, films and adverts almost always favour casting African actors who are either light brown or dual heritage in leading roles as the ‘acceptable’ major love interest. In its dramas and soap operas, the BBC is often accused of only casting Africans with dark brown skin in roles where they aspire to ‘whiteness’ by almost exclusively choosing european partners for relationships. Performer, Grace Jones was also encouraged and rewarded for portraying herself in the media as wild, aggressive exotica to project a damaging image for African women whose skin is dark brown and wear their hair in a natural fashion.

In 1999, politician Jeffery Archer received wide-scale condemnation after he announced: “Your head did not turn in the road if a black woman passed because they were badly dressed, probably overweight and probably had a lousy job. If you walk down London streets now there are most staggeringly beautiful girls of every nationality. That is part of getting rid of prejudice and making things equal,”. His comments were defended by actress, Patti Boulaye.

The attack on the African aesthetic is unrelenting and we must therefore ensure that our defence is holistic and wide-ranging. Ligali reaffirms calls for information about shops that sell skin lightening products. Any requests to remain anonymous will be respected. You can email us at mail@ligali.org.

Whilst we are financing these predominantly Asian owned outlets, they are reaping the economic benefits of exploiting the cultural and identity insecurities within our community. The fact that some Asian shops have now begun to employ African staff is simply to mislead the African community whilst maintaining their profits from harmful hair and skin products. We also advocate a complete boycott of Black Beauty and Hair magazine and any other publications that feature extensive advertising for skin lightening products.

We must also refrain from ostracising and condemning women and men who use skin whitening products. This is not conducive to community self recovery and will simply further entrench notions of self hatred in these individuals and allow for the perpetuation of this dangerous self hatred for another generation. It is also easier to judge these people who simply have a physical manifestation of their self hatred as opposed to an invisible emotional and psychological insecurity. Instead, we would encourage a system of education, that is preventative and also in response to those who currently use the products to raise awareness of the harmful effects of skin lighteners and chemical hair straighteners and also instil a sense of self pride in their natural appearance. Young women in particular are very vulnerable to the MTV Base notions of beauty which have become more overtly european over the decades. Concurrently, young women are increasingly suffering from receding hairlines, weakened hair and even alopecia as a result of the over use of chemical hair straighteners.

Finally, we should continue to support the great work of organisations like Adornment who, on the 8th and 9th of April 2007 at Battersea Evolution, will be hosting their increasingly popular Adornment Expo which promotes a natural and Africentric lifestyle. Not only does this event encourage ways of celebrating and enhancing our natural beauty and lifestyles but it also provides African businesses with an exclusive opportunity to reach an African audience.

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BLACK-SKINNED WOMEN: QUEEN MOTHERS OF THE BLACK RACE AND ALL BEAUTY!

January 6, 2007

Why do I sing Praises of your Beautiful, Black, ebony,velvet skin,”Blacker than the sky at midnight”{1},your full mushroomed mouth, your beautiful broad nose, your generous “Congo hips” {2}and full-flowered backside? Because for too long many of the Black Race have abused, dishonored you, degraded and denied you your crown, Queen of Queens,Queen Mother of the Black Race, Black Beauty Supreme! From you all the beauty of the Black Race springs forth.In fact all the world’s beauty springs from you,Mother of all beauty of all the races of the world! Your Black midnight,licorice,dark black chocolate,beauty, is Blackness concentrated in your beautiful “Black-blueberry”{3} face!

First in the order of creation is always given respect by Afrikan tradition. The 1st wife, the 1st elder, the 1st kingdom, the 1st original inhabitants, of the earth-all are considered with honor. So it should be with Black Beauty-our darkest -skinned Sisters are the 1st Mothers of the Universe-Black as a color came before all the many tones of brown,red,yellow and white. But for too long our Dark-skinned Queens have not been given the respect and place of honor they deserve. IN FACT THE WHITE BOY HAS INTIATED the cycle of reversing the true order of things by turning upside down the pyramid of Beauty, and placing white-light on top and relegating the most beautiful Black-skinned Beauties to rock bottom!

So Black people have been taught well how to deny our most

    beautiful one her crown, taught how to reject our Blackest, most Afrikan features, full lips and nose and mouth and woollest hair, for the weaker characteristics of the white race. Shame on Black people! When will we wake up to this Black Beauty concentrated, from whence all our lesser beauty comes. When will we give the crown of crowns,the throne of thrones, to the Blackest Queen of Queens?

    Most of us who suffer from”mulatto-mentality” and “yellow fever”, as Fela, our great Nigerian Musician calls it, will go on and on about what about us lighter queens-aren’t we/they beautiful too, yet you/we should be aware that such queens have gotten all the play in the past and that even in Black Egypt one of the reasons for its downfall was the allowing the lighter ones of the race, to place themselves above the rest of us in the name of lightness and pride of light-closer/to/whiteness. So if we’re yellow,to light brown/red, then we should give respect where respect is due and not live off of the artificial white thrill of having “white features” as if it is an advantage. Where would you be without your BLACKEST great Grandmother? We should honor the Blackest past of ourselves, thus giving us true pride of Blackness, not verbal signifyin’ but real testifyin’ that BLACK is beautiful! If the Blackest, most Afrikan-featured Sister isn’t respected as the Supreme Beauty of the Race,the Black woman’s beauty is not really respected at all for what it really is(only in terms of how closer to white we look). We all reflect the strengths of this concentrated beauty in ourselves, all the manifestations of how Blackness can present itself are seen in our faces. Down to the milk-lightest of us, our Blackness is what dominates us whether physically or mentally. But the Mother is greater than the child and so the Blackest is greater than all the other tones of the Black Race. If we don’t respect our Blackest Queen, we don’t respect our True Black selves. We must have a Black value for BLACKNESS in features and skin tone. We must have a Black Standard of Beauty based on the Black-skinned woman. ALL PRAISES DUE TO OUR BLACK-SKINNED QUEEN-MOTHERS!

    Sister Yeye Akilimali Funua Olade
    1981,Lagos,Nigeria

    BLACK NOTES: Let me give tribute to Brother Damu,House of Umoja(San Francisco) for{1}
    {2}Brother O.O. Gabugan in the poem “Black Queen For a Day”,{3}Sister Sonia Sanchez in her poem “,Queens of the Universe”,for the quoted words used in the first part of this article."SUSAN" ,PHOTOGRAPHED BY ANDREA DAQUINO

    VENUS WILLIAMS,BLACK BEAUTY SUPREME!

    VENUS WILLIAMS,BLACK BEAUTY SUPREME!

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    KENYAN BLACK SKINNED BEAUTY

    KENYAN BLACK SKINNED BEAUTY

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