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Nyakim Gatwech had an excellent response for an Uber driver who asked her if she’d ever bleach her Sudanese skin. “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].”

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.


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