Twenty-three-year-old Segun Ogunlude’s skin is a sight to behold. It is dotted by dark patches and small reddish blotches that easily identify him as one of the growing number of male Nigerians who bleach their skin.
“I was dark-skinned some years back and I didn’t like it,” Ogunlude, a transporter who said he started skin bleaching three years ago, said. “Now that I’m much lighter, I feel good. In fact, I don’t joke with my skin. I have my bath at least twice a day and I use a particular bleaching cream and it works like magic. My skin feels smooth and looks toned,” he said.
A general physician, Dr. Kunle Ogunyomi, defines skin bleaching as a cosmetic procedure that aims to lighten dark areas of skin or achieve a generally paler skin tone. Several studies have shown that bleaching is dangerous. But Ogunlude said he would not stop bleaching.
He said, “I know a lot of men want to have my skin colour. I get comments from women about my nice skin. But it didn’t come easy. I had to continuously pamper and care for my skin. I’m proud of my present colour.
“I don’t believe bleaching creams are produced wholly for women. Men too can use bleaching creams.”