The Skin-Bleaching Phenomenon

Aired on 01/19/2015 | tv-pg
Skin bleaching, or skin lightening—the process of using a chemical agent to lighten the skin tone—is a controversial "beauty" practice that has been around for ages. Dr. Margaret Hunter, head of the sociology department at Mills College, says women around the globe are purchasing lightening creams in hopes of changing their complexion.

"Skin bleaching is a growing phenomenon around the world," she says. "Now it's a multibillion-dollar business, and all the biggest cosmetic companies sell products that are supposed to lighten your skin."

Columnist Jamilah Lemieux says we've yet to see a skin-bleaching product that gives natural results, yet some women will do whatever it takes to achieve a lighter complexion. "They prefer that over their God-given color," she says in disbelief.

While some women would do anything for lighter skin, others wish for just the opposite. Watch one woman share the emotional and physical damage she suffered just to feel accepted.