Earlier this year while in an Uber, Sudanese model Nyakim Gatwech encountered one of the most offensive questions you can ever ask a Black woman.
“Don’t take this offensive but if you were given 10 thousand dollars would you bleach your skin for that amount?” the driver had the audacity to say.
Don’t worry though, Gatwech had the perfect reply: “I couldn’t even respond I started laughing so hard,” she wrote on Instagram.
“[Then] he said, ‘So, is that a no?’ and I said, ‘Hell to the f**king yeah. that’s a no.’ Why on earth would I ever bleach this beautiful melanin God [blessed] me [with].”
SOUTH SUDAN🇸🇸🇸🇸 A country with people so dark you won't believe your eyes.. skin so rich and teeth so bright. Gosh how I love my country my people and everything that come with it.. I was ask my uber driver the other day he said, don't take this offensive but if you were given 10 thousand dollars 💵 would you bleach your skin for that amount? I couldn't even respond I started laughing so hard. Than he said so that a no and I was like hell to the f*king yeah that a no, why on earth would I ever bleach this beautiful melanin God bless with me. Than he said so you look at it as a blessing? I just 🤦♂️ you won't believe the kind of questions I get and the kind of looks I get for having this skin. On that note #melaninmonday🍫🍫 ||different melanin|| 📸 @piokky 👗 @isaacwest Models: @moliesha95 @odur @chudes0212 @queenkim_nyakim
Since then, as Bazaar writes:
“The 24 year old has attracted 187,000 Instagram followers after using the social media platform to challenge perceptions of beauty. Her inspiring posts—which range from her modeling outtakes to casual outfit snaps—include captions about self-love and confidence or poems about black beauty, defying colorism and reminding the world that black women are beautiful. Often using the hashtag #melaninmonday, Gatwech calls herself “Queen of the Dark,” a nickname first given by her fans.”
And Queen she definitely is!
Melanin stays poppin’!
Setting her own standard of beauty!
MELANIN MONDAY🍫🍫👸🏿👸🏿🖤 Dear my moonshine dark skin, sun kissed complexion, burn skin or whatever they might call you, You are beyond beautiful and the love I have for is unconditional because you are me. you represent me and I represent you and let show the world how beautiful and intelligent we are apart from just being dark skin, because we are more than what this Society think of our dark skin let stand up for those who can't. Let's speak up those who can't. And stay beautiful while doing it❤️❤️🖤🖤 📸 @piokky 👙 @miss__aude @audeswim 💄 @queenkim_nyakim Model @queenkim_nyakim #saynotoskinbleaching☝😖 #slefloveisthebestlove #melaninpoppin🍫❤️✨ #nubianqueen👌🏿👸🏿 #queenofdark🍫🖤👸🏿 #melaningoddess👑🍫 #southsudanesebeauty🇸🇸🇸🇸😍😍🙌🏿 #blackgirlmagic💫✨ #nuerbeauty😍😍🙌🏿🙌🏿 #confideniskey❤️ #africanqueen👸🏿 #longlegadontcare❤️
Unapologetically black and beautiful!
I AM A DRIPPING MELANIN AND Honey . MY EBONY SKIN STAY GLOWING. I AM BLACK WITHOUT APOLOGY!!🍫🍫😍😍 #slefloveisthebestlove #blackgirlmagic💫✨ #melaningoddess👑🍫 #melaninpoppin🍫❤️✨ #southsudanesebeauty🇸🇸🇸🇸😍😍🙌🏿 #highligonfleek #chocolate🍫 #queenofdark🍫🖤👸🏿 #wcw😍😍😍 Project: ||.RARE.|| : : ||.Creative Director, Styled & Photographed By.|| Fashion Designer || @isaacwest : : : ||.Model.|| @queenkim_nyakim ||
Seeing Gatwech’s self-love is inspiring and necessary in a world that doesn’t always value darker skin they way that it should. Most importantly, as she once wrote, she is using her platform to speak for those who can’t always speak up for themselves.
“You are beyond beautiful and the love I have for is unconditional because you are me. you represent me and I represent you and let show the world how beautiful and intelligent we are apart from just being dark skin, because we are more than what this Society think of our dark skin let stand up for those who can’t. Let’s speak up those who can’t.”
In the end, she is clear that Blackness is “everything.”
“Black girls are everything, black itself is everything—[it] is not the color or sadness or death. Black is the [color of] brave, strong, black is the color of me.”
Thank you Nyakim for being such a great role model!