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Khanyi Mbau on colourism in the entertainment industry



the entertainment business is tough and you need a thick skin to survive prejudice and discrimination are common someone who's been in the industry long enough to be very familiar with all of that is Canyon bowel she joins me now to talk about how much skin tone matters in the industry can you very good afternoon to you thank you for coming in your change in appearance in particular the color of your skin or the shade of your skin has been the subject of much speculation a lot of negative comments as well how much of it is natural and how much is cosmetic 90% of the color of my skin is because may take now and this was a personal choice but not because it's something that's needed for the industry it's something that I preferred and I realized that once my skin is fairer I think you have to use lesser makeup and like sitting in the chair before I shoot a movie for long I could just put on powder and I can go so for me that was a maintenance issue that I wanted to do and what do you say to people who then reduce it to having an issue with being a darker African person you know the problem is I think Africans have become such bullies in terms of what our freedom means and what F being African is that now they use it against anyone and especially talk of skin tone people that didn't want to come around and say this is how you should be when you're African but why did we fight for freedom if we can't express our freedom in the way that we feel and it doesn't mean when you're black you should be in beads and you should look F Nick in a certain way you can become anything that you want and then we all want to claim what global citizens but we hate it when people want to now reach out and look like a global citizen does it bother you at all when you read some of what people have to say about your parents no it's actually interesting of how South Africans fear what they don't know when people don't understand they just hear the word butan and they go oh my goodness skin cancer you're gonna die and whatever but technology is always upgrading itself and if cell phones can be smartphones today clearly skin lightening is at another level that you don't get sick it's something that you can actually maintain and people then see filters and they think no you're too light now you're just you're just going out of hand but South Africans are bullies to be what are the dangers can you of the sort of transformation that you have undergone I don't imagine that it's 100% safe as anything else nothing is ever safe in this life I mean just walking out your house is a risk you could die but with this the risks are number one it's a lot of money number two is you need to know what your skin type is you can't use what I use because your pH and mine aren't the same obviously you can't be in the Sun but even naturally you expected not to be in the Sun because the Sun is harsh so it's literally looking after yourself and using the right products for your skin spoke about it being expensive question how much does it cost you to transform look I mean just for just the IV's on its own it's eight procedures and an IV can start from like 1.2 per procedure so you can billion no 1.2 thousand 100 200 you know no if you're gonna do it for five years you can imagine how much that is but you need more it's not just the IV it's the products that you use it's the vitamins that you need to take so all in all you spent about ten thousand random month okay so let's talk about the other conversation that erupted this past me about the acting business and skin colour because there's been a debate about how the industry favors fair-skinned actresses you've been around well over ten years now is that something that you have witnessed I have witnessed it the thing is in pearl treesey's defense I think she just couldn't articulate what she was trying to say in her tweet she's trying to say she was tired of always being the girlfriend of the cute girl the love interest the the side chick she wants serious roles where people can take a serious and get into movies where she can she can get a meaty role but because of her looks she's always falling into being a golfer and being a wife being the sexy you know I don't know colleague for some guy that has a crush on them and yes unfortunately our looks you get typecasted into that but if you are serious about your craft you will actually work yourself into your character but yes when directors look at you they look at you and say yes you look like a girlfriend yes you can make a good lawyer because you have a firm face it does it does work against you yes colorism is a big deal I mean you and I can speak to it as black people who've experienced exceed even growing up darker skinned kids grow up with derogatory nicknames based on just how dark they are so is there not a danger then based on what we've seen happen this week in taking a big conversation such as colorism and making it about an individual whether for or against any of the people it's not a gas issue is that I feel that parents are always looking up to celebrities actresses musicians to raise their kids and give them you know instill values into them that's what the family does when you raise your child between the age of eight months to five years that's your foundation phase where you need to make your child comfortable in who they are so that the world outside doesn't mean anything people also forget that the entertainment industry is about aesthetic it's about looking like something that people can only dream about so people then want to put their values in the entertainment industry this isn't the UN where you're trying to save lives we are entertaining we give you things that you can only imagine we look like what you can only dream about and that's what the entertainment is it isn't a space where kids are supposed to be educated and given self-confidence we're supposed to make you come out of your reality and dream a bit when you look at us that entertainment also has the power to do that because there's no denying that while a lot of it is art it does impact on people at a very real level so when do we begin to mix the two the entertainment value as well as an awareness of the impact that what is on our screens what's on Radio impacts especially on the minds of young impressionable people in distress you see every personality positions themselves in within the way that they want for instance Ramzan Mombasa has chosen to become an activist and a spokesperson for for for kids for women she wants to stand up and say you can look to me and I'm just an ordinary girl that's now going around the world and touching lives then you find people like Casper that about fashion about esthetic about the hip hop the champagne life every individual represents what they have chosen it's not the whole industry that is forced to be in that box so your child needs to be intelligent enough from your from your values to say I choose this person and this is what I want you cannot be put under pressure with something that you cannot relay with to understand but the people I suppose that we could put pressure on are the powers that be in television in media who make the decisions as who appears in front of the camera to say to them that it cannot be that we continue to perpetuate the stereotypes that are based seeped in colorism way again we continue to see people cast where beauty has to be fair-skinned look it's a sad thing but unfortunately that's the reality of our industry is beauty is what we sell it is the aesthetic but now we've come into a space where melon and pops and they make you look amazing so it isn't true that if you're not like you can't get onto TV but yes I know if you're darker skinned you need to work harder to make yourself stand out but unfortunately that is the business it's like when you're a doctor you cut people for a living and they cannot change that you will cause pain to people because it's part of your job in our entertainment industry it is about looks and let's not try and and try and and and defend the fact that no we're trying to make even fit in the entertainment industry if you want to be a sportsman you need to workout you need to eat right in our industry if you want to be a star you need to look lapatin to look good you need to work on yourself constantly and that's just what our field requires and I think we've also messed it up because now the corporate industry when they want numbers they call us and that's where the lines get crossed because then they now think that because UNICEF has called me in because they want awareness then they now think this is what I do and now I know it was a campaign but in the industry you need to look a certain part like in sports you cannot be fat if you want to be an athletic that's what it is and we can't say now hostes making fat kids feel useless because he's faster and slimmer I suppose that's like guts he brought a conversation about what's required of one or what we're trying to drill down to at this point is that the beauty itself in entertainment as we've seen is varied and should be veiled yes I mean even like in the modelling industry you need to be taught you need to be slim so guys let's entertain us enjoy themselves and do what they do if you need to look green if you need to make your nose straighter for whatever you're selling that's what it is we work with cosmetic companies we work with aesthetic companies and that's what we do we need to look like what we're trying to sell all right Connie Bauer actress and role caster thank you so much greater so much

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Comments
  • Bleaching as a maintenance issue… we’ve now officially heard it all🙌🏾
    👩🏿👩🏾👩🏽👩🏻… sebenza wena girl 🤗

  • Hahahahaha entertainment industry is not UN…. That's a killer right there… 😂😂😂😂😂😂my goodness….. By the way you becoming a living ghost day by day…

  • Khanyi needs to start a political party guys,🤣🤣🤣she is good at convincing, you end up like "yeah you are right".Imagine her, telling the whites how much we need land, definitely we will get it!🤣🤣🤣🤣

  • The coment section is more interesting than the whole kanye storie 🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣

  • Tired and fedup with my Black Queens. Bleaching their Melanin Skin like No tomorrow. #Just fedup.

  • And you wonder why most white people think they are superior😑 its because some of us hate ourselves to an extent of bleaching.

  • Maintenance issue… Self-love issue… Same thing. White people bullied Africans and took the land, including your psyche and melanin now. Those are the bullies. A young girl dreaming of becoming the master's colour. Africans are angry. #bring back the melanin

  • What does she mean …so that she does not have to put too much make up? So this people they apply make up to lighten up thier complexion NOT to enhance their natural skin tone, mxm.

  • This is the problem with some of us Africans we're being Westernized on a daily basis and the contemporary multicultural framework still view Europe as the pinnacle of existence with devastating results to the pysche of the indigenous population . I personally think we must pull the plug on any black person who bleaches her/ his skin and must not be supported nor deserve recognition from us . Decolonisation of the mind should be legislated primarily in African countries .

  • She said if you want to be a model you need to be tall and slim??!!!! No boo we have plus sized models!!!!!!! I can't believe how narrow minded she is.

  • Truth is: if half of y’all could afford, ud more or less do the same thing she did. Even if it’s a shade later

  • Do u think lupita ,Trevor noah and many more who have made it in entertainment jst did it becoz they looked good? Pliz go back to real life school and be thaught to love yoself first.

  • Entertainment can also be used to educate not just to make people dream .oh my God ,what is this girl saying?

  • Ayih! This is why Africans are still considered less humans then whites and other races ,we don't love ourselves to start with.what s wrong with u keeping yo natural color? Who said u can't make it if u black ? What message r u sending to these young girls who r coming up ? This is so wrong for her to even sit there so comfortably and defending herself.so since she assumed that she made it in the industry after bleaching her skin ,id like to know what exactly has she achieved?

  • I don't know hey… Yes, she's making valid points I especially agree with her sentiments about Pearl having to be the girl that the boys want and I commend her for being honest about having experienced colorism in the industry HOWEVER I think she's missing the gist of the argument here and comparing it to "to be an athlete you need to be fit" is not valid because you don't need to be light skinned for boys to want you and that portrayal on TV and the media is dangerous. Yes, TV is not supposed to raise our kids but lets not pretend like it doesn't influence us. The argument against colorism is that you shouldn't HAVE to be light skinned to be the love interest in a role and you shouldn't HAVE to be dark skinned to be the villain or rape victim, etc. I'm sure the Pearl Thusis of the industry would like it if they themselves were to break free from the stereotypical 'damsel in distress' roles they find themselves trapped in because of their skin tone much like the darker shade counterparts would like to break free of this as well. We're all on the same side here.

  • Your are not viewed as a global citizen. You're just a N** in the eyes of certain people. Learn to love yourself. We fought so many struggle and this must be the most difficult one (self love, loving your own people, forget about the racist images we see in the dominant media).

  • This shouldn't even be a discussion on a continent with over a billion black people making self-hate normal is not a good thing and she's speaking like you can't be dark skinned and beautiful which is a lie it's up to you dark skin people of Africa but you are the majority to change that narrative this is one sick woman and no black child should be looking up to her

  • It's a question of choice people! Like some use Botox and others invasive plastic surgery! Get over it already! When it's done in America or Europe, it's ok! Really now! Get on with it ! She's eloquent and lovely and she's on a mission and knows where she's going 🙄

  • When devil come to yrlife,he doesnt knock,he just enter and doing anything he like ,without God u are nothing,u wil hate yrself until u die,she just hate herself

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