On the most important day of Carol's life-her wedding- the 27-year-old hairdresser says she felt beautiful. During the last two months of preparation, carol used skin bleaching products in anticipation of this day. At the ceremony, her complexion, which she normally describes as coffee-colored was a creamy café au lait. As hundreds gathered outdoors, carol stayed in the shed to protect her lightened skin from the sun.
"When I did step out to have my picture taken, my skin was so sensitive it felt as if I was being scorched with an iron," she says.
Wedding ceremonies are just one of the occasions for which most women lighten their skin, knowingly risking cancer in the process. The practice is also common before festive holidays, when women have higher chances of travelling to their villages to their villages and meeting friends and relatives that they haven't seen in a long time.
Some women don't wait for special occasions; they use bleaching products every day.
In societies such as Uganda, where dark skin is a marker of toiling in the sun, lighter skin signifies affluence.
Nasaali Liz, a professor, believe that is a legacy of the colonial days, when European rulers,by their very existence, established a link between power, affluence and light complexions. Europeans are also said to have showed favoritism to paler Africans. Before chemical skin bleaching first arrived in Uganda in the eighties, it was a question of staying out of the sun and not using very-effective herbal masks. But with the addition of bleach, these creams have become more potent and the practice increasingly widespread.
(Here is your guide to which foods to eat and avoid, depending on your blood group.)
BLOOD TYPE O
You should follow a high-protein diet with plenty of meat and fish, but stick to low fat carbohydrates and low –dairy foods. Avoid avocados, nuts and oranges and take lots of exercise.
BLOOD TYPE A
You should adopt an almost vegetarian diet that is high in carbohydrates and low in fat. it should be free of red meat with plenty of vegetables and a low in take of diary products. Gentle exercises can benefit this group.