Racial bias within the beauty industry, a poem; BLACK BOOTY

By (S)llew la Wulf | Llewella_the_poet | 21 Oct 2019



In line with my last few posts and in fact a fair few of my posts, here is another poem for Black History Month. I wrote this a few years ago about structural racism in general as I see it but also about how the beauty industry adds to the racial bias we see in society... I've had a lifetime of hating my hair and really, that is largely to do with the messages we women are bombarded with about what is and isn't beautiful. Yes, there has been a big push to address that in latter years but we are not there yet... No where near...


I am black

I am brown

I draw the outline

I wear the crown

Whether you’re pinky

Whether you’re white

Bears no relevance

Casts no light

Cos this minefield

I inhabit

Those streets

Your ancestors walked

For free

Are stained with the blood

Of my dear elders

Stained with the blood

You let me bleed.

The very timbre of my hair


In the beauty industry

Words like frizzy, afro, kinky


So pejoratively

If I am black

I am not beautiful

In this rhetoric i see

Unless I'm fetishised



For thee

I hear you talk of



And love

Of diverse equality

But in receipt

I am still lacking

In understanding of this plea

When those relational identities

That long ago

Put you above me

Are still paying dividends

In the profit

That you take

Ignorant and free

Oh my white brother

In your harbour

You sit incapable to see

That you move through life


By the doors

Held shut to me

Oh my white sister

In your tower

We break bread

And share our souls

But reparations

Are not so figurative

When life deals more

Than our shared blow

You think my sex

It does define me

You think my sass

It sets me free

You think my hips

That swing like peaches

Invite you daddy

To come on in

You think exotic

Is a compliment

You think me curious

You think me art

You think me lucky

To be objectified


And torn apart

Am i black?

Am i brown?

I am a caricature

I wear the crown

I am valued but I’m wage less

This deficit

In which i drown

In these socialised perspectives

In which I’m defined

In which I’m allowed

But equality don’t mean we’re equal

You started first

I’m weighted down.

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(S)llew la Wulf
(S)llew la Wulf

Yet another artist screaming (colourfully) into the void. I like to dance. I write. I do self portraiture and i draw... I cover topics ranging from racial bias to female sexuality to capitalism to rape culture and of course, love ❤️


Poetic is indeed a perspective but a poem is a poem is a are some of mine.

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