Kerry turns pale, InStyle

Kerry turns pale, InStyle

Scandal star’s lighter skin tone on magazine cover opens up debate

By (AP)

Published: Mon 9 Feb 2015, 9:33 PM

Last updated: Thu 25 Jun 2015, 11:09 PM

Kerry Washington took to social media last week to gush about her March cover for the magazine, but her skin tone in an image she posted on Instagram and Twitter appeared significantly lighter than in real life.

The difference wasn’t lost on dozens of commenters, while others were as “THRILLED” as the Scandal star.

Wrote one sad fan: “Glad you made the cover Kerry, but this isn’t right. I’m sorry. It’s not. Don’t let them do that to you.” Another chimed in: “Why is she white in this picture.”

Some negative comments were later removed.

The magazine said in a statement that it, too, fielded complaints from people concerned that Washington’s skin was deliberately lightened.

“While we did not digitally lighten Kerry’s skin tone, our cover lighting has likely contributed to this concern. We understand that this has resulted in disappointment and hurt. We are listening, and the feedback has been valuable. We are committed to ensuring that this experience has a positive influence on the ways in which we present all women going forward,” the magazine said.

The InStyle cover has Washington brightly lit in a white, shoulder-baring dress, hands on hips and hair wind-swept.

Washington later tweeted the magazine’s explanation in full, adding: “Beautiful statement. Thank u 4 opening this convo. It’s an important 1 that needs to be had.”

The Olivia Pope actress isn’t a newcomer to cover controversy. Lucky magazine took some Photoshop heat for a Kerry cover also declared unrecognisable by some in 2013.

Additionally, the cosmetics giant L’Oreal was accused of “whitening” Beyonce’s skin tone in a several magazine ads dating to 2008. 

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