I have very sensitive skin. I have open pores all around my face, eczema in places I want to disappear, and battle scars on my legs from biking accidents. My skin is extremely difficult to deal with. I invest in so many skin products to ensure my skin remains immaculate. The one thing I can say I love about my skin is that it’s brown as fuck. I wouldn’t change that for anything in the world.
I just may have a fetish for melanin. The darker the pigment, the stronger the obsession. The infatuation started back in 2009 when I moved to Washington, DC and witnessed the beautiful Black women and men of Howard University. So many flavors! Toffee, Cinnamon, Chocolate, Caramel; baby girl caught a sweet tooth. Going to predominately white schools all my life, I was neglected from this radiant glory. I was excited to begin my journey at Howard and sit in a classroom with students who looked like me.
I haven't always been this way. Trying to model while in college brought out my insecurities. If it wasn't my wide waist, it was my "large" hips. If it wasn't the hair texture being too coarse, it was my hair being too short. It was pretty intimidating to become a Black model and, unfortunately, I decided to let that dream go. Non-blacks love to make it seem like we, the black community, make excuses and love to pull the 'race' card. Sad to say, honey, but hidden racism is alive and well. Don't believe me? Go talk to Aamito Lagum and come back with some talking points.
I can't write enough articles on the issue. I can't adequately describe my frustration when I wrote an article on Valentino's Pre-Fall 2016 Collection and the use of the Bantu knot. I can't express my satisfaction on when I wrote an article on the artist behind the "Black Models Matter" movement, Ashley B. Chew. My experiences at Howard, my journey attending postgraduate school in London and my everlasting adventure on becoming an influential fashion icon in my community have sculpted me into the person who I am today. A Pro-Black, whimsical artist who thrives off of abstract colors, visually appealing aesthetics, and (of course) melanin.
It’s unfortunate that the Light Skin vs. Dark Skin epidemic still exists in our community; creating a divide amongst our people. It saddens me the stereotypes associated with a skin tone are still a thing. It can get annoying for a woman of light skin pigmentation to be perceived as bourgeoisie. It can get exhausting with the constant nasty jokes a woman of dark skin pigment puts up with. At the end of day, we’re all Black. We are all beautiful and should be grateful God has blessed us with this brilliant feature known as melanin--no matter the hue. We need to stick together and embrace what we have for white celebrities such as Kim Kardashian and Gigi Hadid are receiving recognition for features we have consistently get criticized for.
This final project was implemented to celebrate the glory of melanin and to address the beauty in the various pigments of brown women. I teamed up with photographer, Bryce Lennon, and designer, Cecily Habimana, to create this beautiful masterpiece. This project is called Jumping Colors:
Thanks for reading and supporting the amandaluxe brand. It means more than you know.
- Amanda Moore-Karim
- Models: Nakea Tyson (Pink) | Chanel Love (Green) | Bianca Jeanty (Blue)
- Photography by Bryce Lennon
- Skirt Designs by Cecily Habimana
- Styling by Candace Rogue
- Art Direction by Amanda Moore-Karim