December 12th, 2012
Beauty, Fashion, Fashion Discussion
How Far Would You Go For “Beauty”?
By The Fashion Bomb Staff

As society has grown to be more social media conscience, and camera phones have become permanent fixtures in everyday life, it appears everyone is constantly striving to look their best.  But what exactly does the “best” entail? If recent reports are any indicator, plastic surgery and perhaps skin lightening are at the forefront of the quest for acceptance and desirability. It’s a concerning issue that has not discriminated, latching on to the insecurities of everyday people and celebrities alike.

A recent interview with Bossip saw Tamar Braxton and husband Vincent Herbert address longstanding rumors surrounding the reality star/singer’s complexion.  In the on camera sit down she said, “I just want to know what time do I have to do that. If you really think about it, we’ve been shooting ‘Braxton Family Values’ for two years and then in between that it was ‘Tamar & Vince,’ and now we’re back into production with ‘Braxton Family Values.’ So when did she change her face? I just think I grew up and I don’t look the same that I did when I was 19. I don’t think any of us do.” Her husband quickly came to her defense dismissing the claims as being “ignorant” and “not appropriate”. He also revealed Tamar suffers from vitiligo, the same skin condition Michael Jackson publicly struggled with.

A young Tamar Braxton

These are rumors that have oft and unfairly plagued celebrities–everyone from Emily B to Beyoncé, and most recently, Nicki Minaj have been accused of going under the knife or indulging in brightening cream.  This plays into the shameful myth that lighter skin somehow equates to success; and in order to achieve mainstream popularity, female brown skinned celebrities aim for fairer skin. It’s a part of the ever-growing issue of meeting an unrealistic standard of beauty, which unfortunately isn’t limited to complexion.

We recently featured a viral video of a woman showcasing her botched butt job. In the clip we see her clad in a red thong flipping what appears to be an implant. It’s a troubling sight that is a bit difficult to watch.

General concern is frequently aimed at the youth, and taking preventative measures to help ensure a healthy body image. Yet, imagine their difficulty to take heed to said warnings when they witness adult women who are inherently of sound mind, feeling the pangs of insecurity as well.

Valeria Lukyonova The “Human Barbie”

We all want to put our best face forward.  When you look good, you feel good. The question then becomes, how far would you go for beauty?


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90 Responses to “How Far Would You Go For “Beauty”?”

  1. binks says:

    Honestly I think the problem is that people focus too much on “commercial beauty” that we are missing the beauty of being unique. These days everybody wants to look and dress like so and so thay we are slowly becoming clones of each other. Everybody wants to blend in while few stand out and to me that is true beauty. Personally I like character and “flaws” not commercial and photoshopped. I am all for feeling,looking and being your best you so I am not anti plastic surgery/cosmetic procedures but in moderation and nothing to extreme. And Tamar look way more beautiful and unique before than she does now. But as a rule I don’t believe celebrities when it cimes to image because nearly all of them had a nip/tuck or some in house procedure so don’t believe the hype plastic surgery/recovery time has come a LONG way.

  2. @paparazzi_promo says:

    & this is why I love this site….always hit topics that people sweep under the rug..but light skinned,big butt, long hair, expensive designer clothing/shoes, all the materialisticc things etc… shouldn’t make or break you.but it is very sad what “beauty” is now & days …& the extreme measures we go through to achieve that “look”; I do believe in plastic surgery IF needed other than we’re meant to look the way we look naturally…all shape sizes faces is beautfiul :)

  3. Brittany says:

    To Problem and the other poster that said white women don’t get any flack for looking “too white.” That’s not true at all. Many fair skinned women feel pressure to tan.

  4. binks says:

    Oh and I forgot to add that a lot of people are beautiful walking around the streets everyday but most don’t tap into their full potential. Because if a lot of people TRULY take care of themselves and their health they would be knockouts. You would truly be surprised how some people would look without carrying around extra weight, being proactive with their skin/hair, dressing better, etc. We become such a quick fix society that people have become so lazy with their basic body upkeep. So of course many would be easily swayed and “ooh and aww” at the smoke and mirrors of Hollywood and commercial beauty.

  5. Nikkibellarae says:

    Aww man this is sad, I wear weave and make-up and I feel like I alter my natural beauty a bit too much. Some of these women have overstep their boundaries and completely ruined their appearance. I have an eye for beauty and I understand that beauty is in the eyes of the beholder, what I see as gorgeous, another sees as peculiar, so who is setting these standards for universal beauty? In actuality no one! We all have our own definition as to what beauty should be, we may be swayed by society a bit, but we still have our own individual taste. I wanted a nose job at some point because all the stars were doing it until I realized deep down I really like my nose. We shouldn’t alter ourselves so we can be accepted, we should do it so we can be enhanced, and some of these are by far not enhancements, just a loud cry for attention and acceptance.

  6. Savage says:

    @Binks so true. The media is pushing this bullshit standard of beauty to make black women believe that the only way they are truly desirable is to have long weave, big ol’ butt and narrow nose with sky high desginer heels, dress and bag. Its just another way for us as black women to not have a connection with our roots. We’re told and shown that the European standard of beauty is what we need to achieve while women of European desent strive to attain our beauty. Kim K is hailed for her curvy body, Angelina Jolie is stunnig with her full lips. Everyone else knows we’re gorgeous except for us. I’m beginning to think these celebs (not just of color) have had work done bc somewhere along the line someone has told them they’re not beautiful. Its sick what they’re doing to women. “So black women don’t want to strive to be stick thin? We’ll turn them all into Sarah Barton. Bigger butts!” Just another form of feet binding.

    Whoooooo Great post Claire!

  7. Crystal says:

    I guess when you reach a certain level of fame, the pressure is on. But that’s when you have to decide if you want to lose your self respect for money and fame. Some of the lesser famous, yet more talented artist probably never make it big because they chose not to give into the bs. i also think we have to start at home. I don’t see myself lightening my skin or having plastic surgery not because I don’t look at magazines, but because my self worth and how I’m viewed in God’s eyes has been drilled into my head since i can remember. I would feel guilty to alter the beautiful work He created that is me.

  8. Angela says:

    I went as far as getting my breasts augmented in 2008. I didn’t go crazy huge, just filled out what I had to make them more perky. My doctor did a good job and basically gave me what I asked for. But in the end, I was never really happy with them. I’ve decided to have the implants removed this coming Spring. I can’t wait to be AU NATURELLE” again.

  9. LawyerChic says:

    I’m a beauty junkie. I’ll try every product under the sun, but going under the knife is where I draw the line. I don’t trust plastic surgeons when it comes to altering ethnic faces. Plus I’d hate to look like anything other than my parents.

  10. BlackOrchid says:

    We live in a society that says white skin and European features are better and more desirable. For God’s sake the white woman is held up as the poster girl for female attractiveness. So I guess for some people of colour the closer they approximate the look of white women the more attractive and desirable they and society think they are. White women do not hate being white or think that they are not attractive because they are white. However, many women of colour do not like their brown skin and wish to be lighter. I remember when I was at school sunbathing with a group of white friends. I jokingly said to one of the girls it’s going to take some time till you turn brown like me and she looked at me and said: ” Ew I don’t want to be that brown”. I will never forget that. So yeah white girls wanting to get a tan is not the same as brown girls wanting to be lighter.

  11. Brains over "Beauty" says:

    I think a lot of women (not just celebs) are turning to these extreme measures due to pressure from society in generally but esp men. I’ve stopped watching certain videos for this reason but I gurantee if you turn on certain artists videos you will see long hair, giant breasts and even bigger butts with no fat anywhere else. Hell, look at how many social media profiles in which these females place their behind or chest as their main pic. Then look at how many followers and “likes” they have. Its really sad and we have to do better, esp when I think of my daughter growing up and potentially feeling “less than” because of what society says and what most males covet. I’ll teach her the value of inner beauty and def brains but all this makes me wonder where this world will be looking like in abt 10 yrs.

  12. Marthe says:

    White women never want to look like black women. Don’t believe that sh*it. They don’t want ‘african’ lips, they want bigger lips, they don’t want to be black, they just want to look like a healthy, fake Pamela Anderson. They may want some features but never want to look black, because then you must accept all the discrimination and racism you people suffer of. You have beauty all over the world and real beauty is on the inside, but black women, or women of color, are amongst the most beautiful. (I’m not egotripping, I’m white :) ) It is so sad that black women think they have to lower theirselves to ‘white standards’ because of society-pressure. I wish girls all over the world could be more secure and beauty in all forms would be accepted.

  13. A! says:

    Tamar has admitted to having a nose job just like Toni and I think their dad b/c they all have breathing issues. she just wears too much/the wrong color makeup

  14. shaleena says:

    this is a great post! thanks for bringing light to celebs going too far with “enhancing their beauty”.

  15. Anim says:

    This is sad, and at the same time these are the women that some of our sisters are idolizing. We need to learn to love and accept our flaws.

  16. lola says:

    Oooooh child, let me settle in this post

    *chews popcorn*

  17. Goldiloxx says:

    Great article Cliche. There is way too much pressure in society today. As the years pass, it gets worse and worse, I’m so afraid for our kids and the obstacles they will face. Too much focus on what a woman looks like than what a woman has to say or feel.

  18. Shelly says:

    This is a great post/article, and I’m glad that there is a place where we can talk about subjects like these. While I don’t like the thought/practice of skin bleaching, I really don’t have a problem with plastic surgery, if it’s done tastefully.

    Ever since I was young, I have hated my nose. I’ve always felt like it was too big for my face. And I used to feel guilty about wanting to changing it, because people would think that I hated being black. But after doing research, and really sitting down and thinking about it, I realized that I just want a more feminine nose (I have my fathers’ nose). And plus, not all black women have big or wide noses. So with that said, if a person want features that are more harmonious with other features or their bodies, I say go for it. Just as long as it fits, and you’re not trying to totally change who you are. White women (and other races) get their noses done all the time, whether to remove humps, or whatever.

  19. Shelly says:

    This is a great post/article, and I’m glad that there is a place where we can talk about subjects like these. While I don’t like the thought/practice of skin bleaching, I really don’t have a problem with plastic surgery, if it’s done tastefully.

    Ever since I was young, I have hated my nose. I’ve always felt like it was too big for my face. And I used to feel guilty about wanting to changing it, because people would think that I hated being black. But after doing research, and really sitting down and thinking about it, I realized that I just want a more feminine nose (I have my fathers’ nose). And plus, not all black women have big or wide noses. So with that said, if a person want features that are more harmonious with other features or their bodies, I say go for it. Just as long as it fits, and you’re not trying to totally change who you are. White women (and other races) get their noses done all the time, whether to remove humps, make smaller, or whatever (they get big noses/noses like their father too).

    Pattie Labelle and Nene are pretty good examples. They still maintained their ethnic features, but have noses that are more feminine, and fit their face.

  20. Nikki B. says:

    Good post Cliche!

  21. Anonymous says:

    Jennifer hudson need to tend to them ( ) around that mouf of hers but neway

  22. LOLO says:

    IDK about the other ladies, but did anyone else see the last episode of Tamar and Vince when she had NO makeup on and went to go see the dermatologist? she looked FINE like she doesnt look like she did anything to her face when she doesnt have all the makeup caked on…i kno she got her nose done bcuz she said it had to do something with her breathing…BUT i think Tamars problem is how her makeup is done up

  23. Change92 says:

    No one has answered why it is okay for white women to go to taming salons and change the way there sin looks but is is not okay for a black women to bleach there skin

  24. Goldiloxx says:

    @change92 everyone wants what they don’t have. Curly hair? Flatiron. Straight hair? Rollers.

  25. this is scary…enhancing your appearance with hair and makeup is one thing, but completely altering your facial features and physique is self hatred. the sad thing is that the people who do this look perfectly fine before surgery. smh.

  26. Nicolette says:

    them skin are bleached lmao :)

  27. MissCSE says:

    The lying about changes to one’s appearance is what slays me about celebrities. Yes, getting work done is a private matter, but with so many women actually DYING to achieve a look that some presume to be real is just sad and disheartening. If they were just a bit more open about why they feel inclined to succumb to society’s ideal for beauty and why they felt the need to have surgery/bleach/where wigs/etc., then maybe that discussion can be had and there wouldn’t be such a need to have it done in the first place. By making these enhancements seem so taboo, just adds to the fuel and desire for many to have it done and at the the risk of one’s health.

  28. Nia says:

    Looking at Tamar’s old pic, I wonder why she would ever want to mess with that beautiful face.

    As far as the “skin bleaching” goes: it is really sad when it goes too far. I understand wanting to even out hyperpigmentation. I can even understand a little nip and tuck. But, it seems to be a slippery slope. Right now I still think that imperfect is the true perfect. But, if I was in the industry, it might be a different story.

  29. Nia says:

    @Change92, it’s ‘ok’ at both ends of the spectrum. A little sunkiss and a little hydroquinone(sp?) to even out your complexion won’t hurt. But, going too far is not okay.

  30. tt says:

    i appreciate your honesty E. skin bleaching IS epidemic in many communities; not just the african american community. where i live many of the jamaicans & especially the african women bleach & you can really tell because their appearance is this sickly color of gray. their skin tones do not look creamy or even…just grayish. i don’t think bey bleaches because she’s already light, but the jury’s still out on nick. tamar has had work done. she openly discussed her nose job on bfv & she said that some of her sisters have had nose jobs as well. i do believe lighting, bad make up, photoshopping, etc. have a hand in the lightening of these celebrities. look at kim fields. as tootie she was a darker brown child, but as an adult she & her mother are several shades lighter & i remember when a caller called into bet’s teen summit (back in the day) & asked kim why she was so much lighter now than when she was a child. lil’ kim is just a sad soul. she was always referring to herself as a white woman trapped in a black woman’s body. she also said in a magazine article in essence or ebony discussing light/dark skinned celebs that she had a complex about lighter skin because every man she loved left her for a light skinned woman. grown folks are going to do what they want to do so…

  31. Jai says:

    Cliche, what a wonderful, and thought provoking post.

  32. Kay says:

    Wow… I just used my whole lunch hour reading these comments and goggle AHA creams and skin diseases. Thanks Cliche lol… (on serious note great post, I learned alot today).

  33. Kay says:


  34. Thanks for the update, is there any way I can receive an email sent to me when you write a fresh article?

  35. Katie says:

    I think this is a great post, and agree, except I think in the two pictures of Tamar & Niki, you can tell they have on a lighter foundation/full face of makeup. You can see by the reflection of the camera flash, the titanium dioxide reflects light (under Nikki’s eyes, and check out Tamar’s jaw line) So I don’t think these two pictures are the best example, and I’m not too familiar with Tamar to judge otherwise. However, I do agree with the positive statements made here, and think natural is beautiful.

  36. Yasmine says:

    I do not believe either of these females that were mention has ever got their skin lightned! i believe its just the foundation. because ..
    1) its only their face that is light than the rest of their bodies &
    2) I’m light skin and like any other female of male, when its summer time.. what do we all do ?? Get Darker/ Tanned… when its Winter, what happens?? we are lighter than what we were when the sun was cooking us as a meals!
    So no i do not believe either of them have lightened their skin, because if they have.. it wouldnt have been just their faces that were pale, it would of been their whole bodies!!
    Now As For That Damn Lil Kim, There Is No DOUBT That She Bleached/Lightened Her Skin!!

  37. Jessica says:

    Nicki Minaj’s fake bottom is just rediculous and unaesthetic, I hate it.

    Tamar definitely had surgery. It looks like she had her nose done. I’m not sure about the skin bleaching thing but I will say that you can’t look at one picture from her youth and decide.

    PS I lover Tamar, when’s the album coming out?

  38. Anonymous says:

    The lengths ppl go through in the name of vanity is pathetic. A little nip here and tuck there is okay, but dont go overboard

  39. Tiffany says:

    Awesome post. I think this would be less of an issue if more celebs were upfront about the plastic surgery they have. Example, Kelly Rowland famously admitted to having plastic surgery and—no one ever talks about it because it’s not a secret. I’m all for people improving themselves how they see fight, but in the words of Ice Cube: You aint gotta lie to kick it.

  40. Bella32 says:

    I’ve been seeing recent pics of Emily Bustamante in the media and thinking “Lord, what has this woman done to herself???”…she was just fine the way she was before.

    Tamar doesn’t appear to be bleaching at all to me, but the shades of foundation she’s using in conjunction with all the heavy contouring…goodness gracious it’s so over the top as much as I like her I think it makes her look a bit like a Muppet; everything washed out with exaggerated eyes and lips. She’s an attractive young lady, though and doesn’t need all of that… you can see on her show when she has down time (vacations/rehearsals) she’s wearing little to no make-up and looks normal and cute– and not bleached out- although she’s clearly had her nose tweaked a little bit. However, it doesn’t look bad at all on her. I think small cosmetic tweaks aren’t out of the ordinary for the modern woman, although I would never do it myself.

    I do also recall during the first season of BFV, Tamar was going through a hardcore “bronzing”/spray tan phase wile in Los Angeles: I guess she’s on the opposite end of the spectrum now with her make-up artists blowing her out as they do?

    That being said, I am at least happy that she hasn’t begun altering her body with implants. In my day being curvy meant you had a figure like Lola Falana, Pam Grier, or Bernadette Stannis from Good Times, and NATURALLY so. Whatever happened to the days of The Commodores’ iconic “Brickhouse”, the woman who measured 36-24-36?

    I think what young women are doing to themselves today to achieve the current (and non-realistic) visions of physical perfection via these implantations is nothing short of madness. I often wonder if (God forbid) these women end up with many health complications as a result of butchering their bodies like this? At the very least, I imagine there will be some, who, at a later point in life, will regret what they’ve done to themselves even if it’s just a matter of aesthetics. Imagine being 70 year old trying to maintain such an exaggerated figure? These surgery trends we’re witnessing are overkill, and I’ll be glad when we see the end of it all. This craziness is doing nothing but pushing young women further and further towards body dysmorphic disorder before our very eyes.

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