There is a laundry list of celebrities in the spotlight who have been accused of bleaching — Beyonce, Dawn Richards and India.Arie to name a recent few — but they rarely offer an explanation for it beyond aggressive lighting. Tamar Braxton, the latest to find herself the subject of bleaching rumors, attributes changes in her complexion to the skin disease, vitiligo.
The star of “Braxton Family Values,” explained to Ebony Magazine that she’s suffered from the condition since she was a child and it worsened since she became pregnant. She also elucidates the effect it’s had on her self esteem:
Anybody with skin issues knows that that’s a very sensitive subject. And that’s why I’ve never shared that I have Vitiligo, because I do. I’ve always had it, since I was a young girl. It’s not as bad as others because everybody has it differently, but I’ve certainly had mine diagnosed. That’s why I tan. People say, “You bleach your skin!” But I tan just so I can have a better tone on my skin, boo!
It’s gotten worse since I’ve gotten pregnant. If you shake my hand now, to me it’s more noticeable. But when you get diagnosed with a skin disorder, it’s hard. It does weigh on your self-esteem. It really does. But I’m done defending that. I’m not bleaching my skin and if I was bleaching my skin and I felt like saying so, I would, but for the record, I am not.
Though Tamar shouldn’t have to defend or explain herself, we applaud her for shedding light on her skin disorder and the emotional impact it has on her. Speaking out may free and comfort others who are struggling with vitiligo.