Khoudia Diop, a Senegalese model has risen to fame for her incredibly dark skin tone. Calling herself the “Melannin Goddess”, she has impressed the world with a confident attitude towards her skin color. We are living in a time when skin bleaching is prevalent among millions of African women who are under pressure to conform to unreasonable beauty standards. Khoudia’s active presence on social media is helping to create conversations about embracing different shades of colour in the fashion industry. There is a lot to be learned from this beauty who has risen above naysayers. Here are just a few lessons she teaches us by example.
Confidence Is A Process
Confidence is what allows you to have faith in your abilities. It is easy to think that Khoudia has always been that confident in who she is. That has however not always been the case. “There were times I would not leave my room for weeks and sometimes missed school because I hated the way people looked at me. I felt really ashamed”, She says in an interview. She adds, “Making peace with myself did not happen over night. Self love is not something that you get in one day or two days. It’s an ongoing process and I go through it everyday,”
Confidence is what will drive you to where you’ve always wanted to be but few people are lucky enough to be confident from the start. For the rest of us, building confidence is a process that we work on every single day.
Labels Are Just That…Labels
When she was younger, she did not have the inspiration to like the skin she was in. Her very first account on instagram was BlackBarbie, which was something her friends used to call her when she was growing up. But then, she had another thought to find something that would matter to dark skinned girls. So she came up with melaniingoddess to show girls that being dark is not something bad. And because of that, she has made waves in the modeling industry for her beautiful dark skin.
Social media is such a powerful tool because it puts power in our hands. We are now able to show ourselves to the world and set our own standards. Just because people have branded you something doesn’t mean that you should take it up as your identity.
Embrace Makes You Unique
At the age of 15, when she moved to Paris, Diop was repeatedly approached with the suggestion to become a model. “There were lots of light skinned people around us but when I saw myself and how my skin was popping, it hit me: This is why people look at me.” She says in an interview.
She has been able to carve out a modelling career based on what makes her different. Different is beautiful. What is it that makes you different? The answer might be just what you need to launch a successful career.
Work With People Who Are Passionate About Your Mission
Surround yourself with people who empower you to succeed and cheer your success. Khoudia works with an agency that is aligned to her mission, The Colored Girl agency, a creative agency dedicated to celebrating beauty in women of colour in major fashion and beauty campaigns. The people you choose to work with have a huge impact on your life. Be with people who are aligned to your goals and who inspire you to be a better person.