After a Google search for “beautiful skin” yielded images of mostly white women, a group of women on Twitter started the hashtag #FlexinMyComplexion to encourage women of color to show off their own beautiful skin.
While the hashtag has been around for at least a few months, it gained new relevance when @POCBeauty–a Twitter account that celebrates women of color–asked its 26,000 followers to flex on the social network.
The response was massive, and #FlexinMyComplexion racked up more than 85,000 tweets in a week.
— leah (@WildLikeLee) August 14, 2015
— `❤shae (@GodsPrideAndJoy) August 14, 2015
— Paula||Denise (@DownAzzJawn) August 14, 2015
— LemonClark Media® (@LemonClarkMedia) August 14, 2015
Predictably, the flood of women of color to the #FlexinMyComplexion tag caused some to feel excluded, but PoCBeauty says its meant to allow darker skinned women of color to shine.
A lot of people are upset because the tag is for darker skinned people. I honestly don't feel bad. #FlexinMyComplexion
— Beauty in Color (@PoCBeauty) August 14, 2015
“I was lucky enough to not have a family that made me feel bad for my color,” @POCBeauty tells CLUTCH.
Although she’s an outspoken advocate for women of color, POCBeauty does not reveal her real identity because she’s repeatedly been harassed for highlighting non-white women.
“It’s hard enough that magazines, ads, and movies only put fair-skinned people in the focus, but to also have your family go after skin color has to be hard,” she explains. “Skin bleaching is a multi billion dollar business around the world. I think it’s important for women of color to know if they’re brown/dark they’re beautiful too and deserve to be noticed. Dark skin, in all backgrounds, is beautiful and should be recognized as so.”
We totally agree.
Flex your complexion in the comments section below!