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Anne Ackermann published on CNN Photos
cnn photos
Jan 25, 2016
Light and shadows: Skin bleaching in Uganda

Living in Uganda in 2013, German photographer Anne Ackermann couldn't ignore the sight of light-skinned women with obviously dark feet, elbows and joints.

As someone who regularly documents issues surrounding beauty, identity and womanhood, Ackermann's natural curiosity led her to Mama Lususu.

Mama Lususu, which translates to the "mother of beautiful skin," owns popular beauty parlors across downtown Kampala and is famous for helping women to bleach and lighten their skin tone. She also helps to repair skin damaged by the improper use of bleaching chemicals or even stain removers at home.

Skin lightening, a common practice in Uganda, is something that few women will admit to even though they were willing to be photographed by Ackermann in Lususu's parlor. Some of Ackermann's subjects even tried to tell her they were born with lighter skin.

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