Black Women Have Beauty Standards, Too

Clutch magazine's Tami Winfrey Harris pushes back on the notion that anything goes when it comes to African-American bodies.

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Clutch magazine's Tami Winfrey Harris pushes back on the notion that anything goes when it comes to African-American women's bodies.

One undercurrent to the recent hyper-focus on black women’s bodies has been the idea that while the majority culture has strict beauty standards, black folks just don’t give a damn. In our own communities, black women’s bodies -- whatever they look like -- are A-OK.

*side-eye*

Not sharing the majority culture’s beauty standards is not the same as not having any at all. The black community has its own standard for what women should look like. It’s not more relaxed and it can be just as oppressive as the more mainstream standard.

Flip through King or any black-targeted lad-style magazine and there is no doubt you will see a standard at play. (Standards for women’s bodies are generally predicated on the male gaze.) It is, for sure, a standard that is different from the Eurocentric mainstream, but it is a standard: small waist, round booty, juicy thighs, boobies optional.

Read the rest of Tami Winfrey Harris' piece at Clutch magazine.

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