Thuso Mbedu on growing up with insecurities over her complexion

23 June 2020 - 07:00 By Chrizelda Kekana
Thuso Mbedu opened up about loving her dark brown skin.
Thuso Mbedu opened up about loving her dark brown skin.
Image: Instagram/Thuso Mbedu/emmy.photography

She may be considered to be one of the most beautiful SA stars but Emmy-nominated actress Thuso Mbedu didn't always feel pretty in her dark complexion black skin and she's shared the reasons for her insecurities.

Taking to Instagram, Thuso shared a beautiful throwback picture of her 26-year-old self and the background story behind the picture that many of her followers couldn't have anticipated.

“I came across this picture that was taken three years ago and the first thought that struck me was, 'This was the first time I felt pretty in my skin/complexion'. That was the thought and then I thought, 'oh snap. That’s deep. And sad. That’s deeply sad.'” 

Thuso said when it hit her that it was only in that photo shoot that she began to feel beautiful, when she was at the end of 25 years on Earth going towards 26, she was shattered.

The actress added that it wasn't that she had make-up on that made her feel pretty, rather, it was the realisation that her dark skin never stood “in the way” of her beauty.

“It wasn’t even about the make-up because, as you can see, we went a little left with that. I just absolutely loved the brown of my skin that day. For the first time, I, too, could be perceived as pretty ‘despite’ how dark I was.”

Thuso took the opportunity to encourage other black, dark complexion girls to love the skin they are in.

“Twenty-six years is a long time to stop being awkward in your own skin just because you turned out a little darker than your sibling and so I hope that my younger followers will learn to love their own shade right now.”

Read Thuso's full post below.

View this post on Instagram

So I have spent all morning thinking about whether I will post this old picture or not. It’s not even about the actual image but more about the story behind it… so here goes. I was actually looking for a file and, for the life of me, I could not remember where I had saved it, so I had to go through all my archives to try find it (I didn’t). But while looking I came across this picture that was taken three years ago and the first thought that struck me was “This was the first time I felt pretty in my skin/complexion”. That was the thought and then I thought “oh snap. That’s deep. And sad. That’s deeply sad.” And then I thought “No ways was this picture taken 3 years ago because that would’ve made me a very fresh and young-looking 25-going-on-26-year old” but alas, upon further investigation I found that, yes, I was that fresh and young-looking. It wasn’t even about the makeup because, as you can see, we went a little left with that. I just absolutely loved the brown of my skin that day. For the first time, I, too, could be perceived as pretty ‘despite’ how dark I was. I have always been awkward and stiff and self-conscious in front of a still camera (and still am today) but after seeing that picture it was not as bad so this one image will always hold a special place in my heart. I remember the first time I asked my sister this question “Did you notice that when we were growing up you were always told how beautiful you are? We were never told.” She hadn’t noticed. (not her fault) 26 years is a long time to stop being awkward in your own skin just because you turned out a little darker than your sibling and so I hope that my younger followers will learn to love their own shade right now. My niece is the same skin tone as me and so I make it a point to tell her how beautiful she is every day and not because I am making up for anything but because she is beautiful. I mean, have you seen my niece? Suka emabhozeni! Nawe umuhle. You’re absolutely beautiful. Don't let their silence convince you otherwise.🤗💛 Now let me go find that file!😭

A post shared by Thuso Mbedu (@thuso.mbedu) on


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