Yesha Callahan

“Pretty” Documentary Series Explores How Black Women View Beauty Globally

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Putting the spotlight on how race and culture influence what’s considered beautiful, un-ruly – a digital beauty platform dedicated to Black hair, will debut Pretty— a documentary series that explores how beauty differs across the globe.

Airing in January 2015, the series will take a look at beauty as told through the perspectives of Black women and explore just how nuanced beauty can be by not only examining how beauty standards vary from country to country, but also how they might vary within a city. About every four weeks, the series will touch down in a new city where viewers will get to know the stories of three to four women, each with her own distinct backgrounds and styles. Through the length of the series Pretty will make its way across the globe starting in Europe, then Africa, South America and North America.

To learn more please visit un-ruly.com

Check out the first episode below:

  1. January 29, 2015 - Reply

    Now THIS is a documentary!

  2. January 29, 2015 - Reply

    I can’t

    • January 29, 2015 - Reply

      @Mary Burrell

      Did you also the smell “white people please accept me” scent?

      • January 29, 2015 - Reply

        @Guest

        @Guest: Yep

  3. January 29, 2015 - Reply

    I was born and raised in France. I know live in the U.S. I can attest that the standard of beauty is different here than there. I also think that a lot of blsvk women there follow US trends or at least stay current with it. The natural movement is slowly taking off in France. I would to see what the rest of the series is going be like.

    • January 29, 2015 - Reply

      @Mahogany

      I have heard that the racism is less overt in France. Is that true?

      • January 30, 2015 - Reply

        @Love.tweet.joi

        @Love.tweet.joi : I suggest you google the Charlie Hebdo cartoons and it may answer your question

        • January 30, 2015 - Reply

          @Mary Burrell

          Do you live in France?

          • January 30, 2015 - Reply

            @roo08

            I went for a vist some years ago

            • January 30, 2015 - Reply

              @Mary Burrell

              I hope that you had a great time in France Sister.

              • January 30, 2015 - Reply

                @truthseeker2436577@yahoo.com

                It was for two days a we went back to London

                • January 30, 2015 - Reply

                  @Mary Burrell

                  OK.

      • January 30, 2015 - Reply

        @Love.tweet.joi

        Racism is still overt there.

      • January 30, 2015 - Reply

        @Love.tweet.joi

        Jein.

    • January 30, 2015 - Reply

      @Mahogany

      Thank you for the information.

  4. January 30, 2015 - Reply

    I love this! I love how raw it is yet focused. The questions were on point. Keep em coming.

  5. January 30, 2015 - Reply

    This is a bit of a controversial statement but I wonder if beauty is real or taught? I think there are beautiful people and there are non-beautiful people. Of course a lot of it is socialization but I do believe no matter what the standards, some people are attractive and some aren’t. This has nothing to do with race necessarily. Not every white woman is beautiful, not every Asian, not every Hispanic and not every black woman either. Sometimes beauty is just beauty outside of the context of race. I used to think beauty was not a real thing and then I started to take notice of how we respond to certain faces and not others. Lupita Nyongo and Grace Jones are beautiful but Leslie Jones is just not. I don’t think that can be argued. Does anyone find Leslie Jones or Kathy Griffin attactive? I would think not.

    • January 30, 2015 - Reply

      @K.C.

      @KC: Your statement is correct. Me personally I don’t find Kathy Griffin or Leslie Jones attractive

    • January 30, 2015 - Reply

      @K.C.

      Technically what human beings find beautiful is what’s symmetrical, so symmetry is beauty but not perfect symmetry. Google it, there’s tons of info out there. So a beautiful face is a face that is more symmetrical than not, with that being said, I do think that there is a cultural component to beauty that does condition us to find certain features and characteristics more attractive than others.Various countries around the world have all sorts of little quirks that they find beautiful (stretched necks, scarrification and tattooing etc) Like Leslie Jones to me isn’t ugly and neither is Kathy Griffin. I honestly do not think there are any ugly people, just people who work against their natural beauty or they just ain’t your cup of tea. All that shit is subjective at the end of the day. So long story short, I’d have to say that beauty is taught for the most part. Scary thing about America is beauty is very much about race or our convoluted ideas of what “race” is. Our whole perception of “beautiful” is constructed around whiteness. I feel like it’s starting to not affect complexion so much but you definitely see it in facial features and phenotype though.I can feel myself starting to go in to preach mode so i”m gon stop!

      • January 31, 2015 - Reply

        @T.A.E. Hoffman

        Not preach mode, we are all here to debate in a friendly way so it’s all good. Now, you lost me with Leslie Jones and Kathi Griffin are attractive. However, mom always said you can fight people on their personal tastes. lol. So, I’m gonna let that one slide. I was always attracted to men for many other reasons, least of which sometimes was looks. I like a nice smell, intelligence, humor, good shape and manners. Don’t get me wrong, a man who is physically hot will NOT be turned away like ever. BUT they need to be highly intelligent to get my attention. So, I get there is more to attraction then physical stuff. I just started to realize that people in general respond to people’s looks in different ways. Let’s be honest, we DO NOT respond the same way to FLavor Flav as we do Morris Chestnut. By your theory, Flavor Flav could be seen just as hot and sexy as Morris. Now, I am sure some woman somewhere finds Flavor Flav wonderful and may even spend the rest of their life with him. HOWEVER, let’s be honest, Morris Chestnut is physically more attractive. Why is that? What is it about Morris Chestnut that makes women swoon and what is it about Flavor Flav that makes women go ewww? Now, in all fairness, I should probably pick two people who are even in hte same ballpark. I don’t know, Ice Cube is not hotter than Morris Chestnut. That is a fact. Why is that? So, I do believe beauty is a real thing. I think when we discuss it about women, it gets more loaded and people are more careful because women have been objectified and defined by beauty for so long. Even more so for black women. However, bottom line is this: I would rather look like Lupita Nyongo, Grace Jones or any of those gorgeous women than Leslie Jones. I just would. Kathie Griffin looks like a pony to me. So does Sarah Jessica Parker. Ok, I am wrong, I will stop now.

    • January 30, 2015 - Reply

      @K.C.

      I don’t find griffin or Leslie ugly but I see where you’re coming from. Beauty is taught..and felt. No matter the standard everyone has their own preference. As much as I like beauty I know its a lie (and people like lies.)

      • January 31, 2015 - Reply

        @Anonin

        Do you think Morris Chestnut is physically hotter than Flavor Flav? Do you think Morris Chestnut is physically hotter than Bill Gates? I think beauty (physical beauty) IS a real thing. I think when it is discussed in context of women, it gets very sensitive because we are always defined by how we look. Black women get it even worst. I get that. However, I do believe, with no racial or social context, Morris Chestnut will be more attractive than many men on any given day and that has nothing today with socialization, that is just a basic instinctual reaction to what he looks like. I am not convinced it is a lie and that is a scary thing because all of us want to believe, everyone comes out with an equal shot. Some people are born looking like Morris, Denzel, Edris, Michael Ealy and some are born looking like Kevin Hart and Flavor Flav. Sucks. lol. Now would the Pygmies consider Kevin Hart more attractive than Morris or Denzel? I don’t know, maybe. I doubt it though.

        • January 31, 2015 - Reply

          @K.C.

          I don’t know who Morris Chestnut is. However I’m not one to believe were all on an equal playing field when it comes to looks because were not. Some people/ things are more appealing than others. Its too subjective though.

          • February 1, 2015 - Reply

            @Anonin

            OMG! Please introduce yourself to Morris Chestnut and your life will change forever. lol. I think it is very subjective but I also think just on a basic level, it is a real thing. For example, we don’t respond to a small puppy dog the same way we respond to a rhino. We don’t respond to a daisy the same way we respond to weeds. There is something about certain flowers that makes us smile just like a butterfuly has a different effect than let’s say a hippo. I am maybe stretching it a bit here but my point is that somethings are more pleasing to the eye than other things and I think it would be so regardless of social conditioning. However, social conditioning is a huge factor, of course. I am not sure Denzel Washington could go anywhere and not get the attention of people as he walks into the room (even the ones who don’t want to admit he is attractive). Deep down, he possesses something in way of looks that many other men don’t. I do believe when raising children, we must tell them all that they are beautiful, no matter what. They have plenty of time in their lives to realize that life is unfair and the playing fields are not always equal. When they are small, they must be told every day they are beautiful and smart, no matter what.

    • February 3, 2015 - Reply

      @K.C.

      Your thoughts are interesting. I think the definition of beauty should include all living things. I also think it depends on a person’s belief in God and the creation of the universe. If God created all living things, the question is whether God created both beauty and ugly? Why would God create something that is considered ugly?

  6. January 30, 2015 - Reply

    It’s a certainly interesting documentary. One strength of it is that it allows black women in France to tell their own stories and to outline their experiences honestly and without obscurity. Change comes by constructive, positive action and it comes by honest discussion too. The women in the documentary want their voices to be fully expressed on the issue of beauty. Beauty obviously is not monolithic and it doesn’t just deal with the physical or with fashion. Beauty comes from within too. Our inner souls must be improved upon if we want to see our true potential as human beings. This greatly develops consciousness too. True beauty readily deals with self-acceptance, compassion, strength, and a resilient spirit. We are all in solidarity with the Afro-French Sisters living their lives. Black beauty should be respected globally.

  7. January 30, 2015 - Reply

    I remember my visit in the early 90’s I was with a group traveling from London and riding to Paris on the train. We met some other travelers at our hotel in London and were told they didn’t like Americans. I thought it was a beautiful city with lots of culture, but if one doesn’t speak the language then it can be difficult. We had a lady with our group who showed us where to go. And interpreted for us. Otherwise we would have been in trouble

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