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L’Oreal Feria denied whitening Beyonce’s face in this ad, which I think works against hip hop feminism. Knowles has enormous influence in the hip hop world and is looked up to by many customers and fans as one of the most successful women in hip hop and R&B music. This ad is a good visual example of how advertising (particularly for beauty products) often favors whiteness, and when they do use women of color in their ads, they still must look “white enough” to market the product. Beyonce is already light skinned, but apparently that wasn’t enough for L’Oreal, who not only whitewashed her face but denied doing so. This message primarily affects L’Oreal’s darker skinned customers as well as young hip hop and Beyonce fans. Industry preference for lighter skinned women is one of many body issues the hip hop generation faces, and there is barely any conversation or public acknowledgement about using women of color to market a white ideal of beauty. It sounds like an oxymoron to suggest companies use more “natural air-brushing,” but what is the point of using someone as a model if you use air-brushing to completely change the way they look instead of accentuating features they already have? And for the record, I doubt someone as rich as Beyonce has ever used a box hair dye in her life. L’Oreal should probably rethink their product representatives.

Beyonce - If I Were a Boy

When I first heard this song, I thought it addressed the issues that were stereotypical of men to sing about in hip hop songs: sex, promiscuity, having multiple women at one time, etc.  However, after watching the video, I felt as though it made women seem weak still.  The idea of the man being the cop struck me.  Is it more masculine? Is it to represent power?  The relationships cops have in general are very strained because of hours that they work etc.  So does it send the wrong message to women who have husbands/girlfriends who are cops?

Beyonce is a very popular artist, and she does a lot of songs to address women’s empowerment.  Do her videos match?

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