When people learned that Beyonce was named People’s most beautiful woman in the world, many folks were split into a few camps: the overjoyed stans, the Bey haters, those who couldn’t care less, and those of us who felt that Bey topping the list was long overdue. Not because she’s actually THE most beautiful person in the world (how can anyone know for sure?), but because the list is basically a popularity contest, and love her or hate her, Bey has “ruled the (pop) world” for a few years now. But when I saw a few of the spread’s photos…well, then I knew there was a problem.
Let me set a few things straight first: Yes, I understand People, despite its name, is geared toward a mainstream (read: white) audience, so picking Bey as “the most beautiful” woman as opposed to, say, Kerry Washington, was inevitable. And while I wish they’d also include “browner” women on the cover, I do think Beyonce gracing the oft-very-white cover is a good move. But while I appreciate her inclusion, I don’t appreciate the photogs & retouchers making her look like a white woman. I mean, come on.
Whether you think Beyonce is black or not (I’ve never debated this, to me, she’s black), when the world sees her…they see a black woman–topping the charts, strolling through NYC with her baby, and cuddling up to her husband and enjoying the game. But the People mag photos have seemed to taking out one of her key elements: her color.
I’m not sure what they were thinking (perhaps selling more covers?), but not only does this particular picture of Bey look amazing pale (yes, she’s light-skinned, but she has color, c’mon), but her lips look awkward (non-existent?) and the picture they chose just makes her look…odd.
What’s not in doubt is that Beyonce is a beautiful woman; she’s an absolute stunner. Hailing her as “the most beautiful woman in the world” and then making her look very, very strange doesn’t seem like much of an honor to me. Bey deserved better than a picture that did little to tout her beauty.
C’mon People, is this really the best you’ve got?