Senegalese model and Instagram star Khoudia Diop suffered years of bullying because of her midnight skin, but now the “Melanin Goddess” is using her strikingly unique and gorgeous complexion to inspire others to love their own beautiful Black skin.
During an interview with CNN Films/Great Big Story, the 19-year-old model revealed that she had a rough time adjusting after moving to Paris at age 15. She said she suffered racially charged taunting and bullying from her peers that sometimes got so bad that she stopped going to school twice.
Diop said that many of her family members had similar battles over skin color and turned to skin bleaching. She remembered instances when her cousins would try to convince her to use skin-lightening products.
“I have a lot of cousins that use skin-bleaching products. Since I was around 13, 12, they started telling me, ‘Why don’t you use this [bleaching product]? Why you wanna be this dark?’ she says.
“My favorite part is inspiring the younger [children] because I feel when they grow up, they can teach other kids,” she says, “and the view of beauty can totally change from that.”