Sometimes you read things that make your eyes bleed, and we’ll go as far to say that Ebony’s interview with Nigerian and Cameroonian musician Dencia is one of them. People are outraged that Dencia is using her Snow White complexion to sling a
skin bleaching cream skin care line called “Whitenicious.” Let that name sink in for a second… Now ponder the fact that in January it sold out within 24 hours.
Ebony scored an interview with Dencia, allowing her to “set the record straight.” Drexel University professor Yaba Blay drew the short straw, sitting down with Dencia to discuss skin lightening products and how they reaffirm colorism and other things that aren’t great. Be forewarned, Dencia clearly doesn’t have a publicist or even a filter.
Dencia on coming up with a super offensive name for a cream allegedly used to treat dark spots and hyperpigmentation:
“So, when the time came to pick out the name for the product, I was talking to my best friend and she was telling me, if you’re picking out a name you have to look at something that is attractive. When you see Whitenicious, you see the container, you see the product, obviously you’re thinking this is gonna work, right? That’s what you’re thinking. We came up with different names. You know, I was coming up with all these glamorous things and my best friend was like “Nah, ‘Whitenicious’ is good.” And when she gave me the name, I was looking up definitions of white. Ok let me define how I see white. (reads) “The color white affects the mind and the body by aiding in mental clarity, promoting feelings of fresh beginnings and renewal assisting in cleansing, clearing obstacles and clutter and encouraging purification.” And guess what? Dark spots is obstacles. Hyperpigmenation is obstacles.”
Dencia says she thinks dark skin is beautiful. Plus she isn’t much lighter than she was before. You see she was tan in the “darker” before photos of her that are being passed around. She also refers to herself in the third person.
“I was never that dark in real life and I can send Ebony pictures of me when I was like 15, 16. And guess what? I don’t even care because they’re bringing me business. Because when you take that picture and you put a picture of Dencia darker, this is what you’re telling people – the product really works. And guess what? People really want to buy it. It’s what it is. I don’t really care.”
Dencia pretends she created Whitenicious for hyperpigmentation and dark spots only. Trust her.
“Trust me, I’ve been running this business for the past three weeks and I’ve read all these emails from girls telling me about how they have this hyperpigmentation, how they have these dark spots. I have seen so many pictures. These girls are not trying to bleach their skin. They’re just trying to get rid of these little things that is making them feel uncomfortable, you know?”
Blay attempts to make her understand the issue. Dencia finally admits her cream will bleach your skin.
EBONY: …But there are also products… and you know this, especially in West Africa. We see the billboards, we see them in the markets, we see the women with all of the damage on their skin – there are products out there that are used to bleach the skin. Your product is called Whitenicious, of course people will buy it because they want to bleach.
Dencia: Ok. Will Whitenicious bleach your skin if you use it on all your skin? Yes, it will. Are we selling Whitenicous for that purpose? No, we’re not. Whitenicous comes in 30 ml and 60ml. You cannot use the 60 ml to bleach your whole skin. It’s impossible. And that costs about $150 each. 60 ml can’t even go on your whole feet. I don’t see anybody spending all that money to bleach their entire skin. I don’t see that happening. Now, do I have customers who come and buy stuff for over $2000? Yes, I do. Do I ask them what they want to do with it? No, I don’t. Do I know what they want to do with it? No, I don’t care because it’s their money, it’s how they want to spend it.
Blay tries again. (Ebony, please give this woman some bonus pay.) Dencia tells her it’s not Africans, but African-Americans who are buying her product.
“As of now 80% of people that buy my products are African American. It’s not Africans. People are saying that it’s Africans because they think I live in Africa. I go back and forth but I live here. I can send you the stats – it is African Americans… My African market is just 10% because guess what? They don’t have credit cards to buy the products and I’m only taking credit cards or PayPal. And they don’t have that access, do you get what I’m saying? It’s these people that can access that.”
Dencia continues. White people hate light skinned Africans anyway…
“White people love the darker skinned Africans. They like the African that is Alek Wek. There’s no in between for them. It’s extreme. You’re either at A or you’re at Z. Now, do you think Africans are lightening to appeal to the White man? No, they’re not because the White man doesn’t even like the light Africans. They like the Black Africans. Look at all the Africans that are successful in the world. They are as Black as Alek Wek. And if I was as Black as Alek Wek, I would never ever use anything on my skin. Trust me, I wouldn’t.”
Cancer Shmancer. Dencia’s disease logic.
Dencia: Contrary to what people are saying “Oh, this is going to cause you cancer.” No, it wouldn’t. Whitening your skin will not cause you cancer. There is no, how do they call this thing?
EBONY: Medical research?
Dencia: Yes, there is no medical research!
EBONY: But there is.
Dencia: That it causes cancer?
Dencia: But guess what? The air you breathe outside causes you cancer. Everything in the world causes cancer.
As much as we would all love to blame this deranged international pop star, she is only a small part of the problem. Her products are selling because of the message being spread by society as a whole. She is clearly just trying to make a quick buck. Let’s hope for a world where Dencia’s product line goes bankrupt from lack of interest.
Click here to read Ebony‘s entire interview with Dencia.
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