Socialite-turned-entrepreneur Bridget Achieng has opened up about her now 5-year journey with skin bleaching.
Speaking on Citizen TV’s “Sema Na Citizen” on Wednesday, January 30, Ms Achieng said low self-esteem pushed her into bleaching her skin, when she was 22 years old.
“When I was 22 years old, I went for acting auditions, but I failed to qualify due to the colour of my skin colour. In one of the auditions, I was the best candidate, but a judge member told me: ‘You have qualified, but your skin tone is not the one we want.’ Sometimes, I would go out with my friends, and men would approach them because of their skin tone, and not even look my way because I was dark. I also had self-esteem issues growing up. I vowed to bleach [my skin], when I got money, and in 2014, when I landed employment, I decided to bleach my skin,” Ms Achieng said in the interview.
“Bleaching, however, is an expensive affair; the addiction to it is akin to the use of drugs,” she added.
“I wouldn’t advise people to use skin-bleaching tablets. Some do affect the kidneys. I would prefer someone uses skin-lightening cream,” she said, adding: “If something makes you happy, pursue it. Africans tend to be quite judgemental.”
Dermatologist Dr Evans Kamuri, however, advises people against skin-whitening, saying the consequences could be life-threatening.
“The purpose of skin pigmentation is to protect the body from negative effects of the sun’s ultra-violet rays. Someone with an originally dark skin stands a better chance of protecting herself from skin cancer risks than someone, who has bleached her skin,” he said.