Gabrielle Union is committed to teaching the boys in her family about beauty standards.
The actress is stepmother to husband Dwyane Wade’s sons Zaire, 16, Zion, 11, and Xavier, four, while the basketball player’s nephew Dahveon also lives in the family home.
Gabrielle is determined to educate the three eldest boys about the realities of colourism, and recently asked to see the Instagram profiles of the girls at school they had crushes on.
“Literally, probably about 10 girls I looked at had the same light skin, curly hair, tiny waist, butt, boobs – it was the same girl over and over again,” she said at Essence Festival’s AT&T Dream in Black Luncheon last weekend (07-08Jul18), as reported by Refinery29. “So I asked them to show me the most beautiful chocolate sister they’ve seen. They say there are none. I was like, ‘Why do they get exed out so fast?'”
The 45-year-old responded by showing the boys photos of American singer and actress Ryan Destiny, which prompted a very different reaction.
“They’re like, ‘Oh, she bad!’ But do you know how many Ryan Destinies there are?” Gabrielle asked. “I pull up every black model, women from all over the world, and they’re beautiful. But they don’t see the beauty unless it comes from an actress or a supermodel or a video vixen. They have to have somebody else tell them that a chocolate woman is attractive for them to believe it.”
The Girls Trip star pushed for diversity in the beauty industry by introducing Flawless, a line of hair-care products catered to people with textured hair, in 2017. However, she is sceptical of the increasing number of brands who support diversity rather than inclusion.
“To me, diversity is the seat at a table that is super tiny. Inclusion is letting you on the block and at the house – much less at the table,” she affirmed.