Confessions of a D Girl: Colorism and Global Standards of Beauty | Chika Okoro | TEDxStanford

  • Published on May 23, 2016
  • If you look like me, you’re used to colorism, says Stanford Graduate Business School student Chika Okoro. She calls the phenomenon known as colorism - discrimination against those with a darker skin tone -- “both as sinister and as subtle as racism.” In a world where light skin, light eyes and long “real” hair are sought after features, Okoro tells us how she copes, and what we can do to unlearn this deep rooted, destructive mindset.
    Chika Okoro is a second year MBA student at Stanford. Passionate about race and gender equality, she is excited to raise awareness about the many issues that women of color face around the world. She hopes that her talk will start a conversation about important issues that people are less vocal about today. While at Stanford Chika is an Arbuckle Leadership Fellow providing leadership coaching and training to MBA 1st year students. Before coming to Stanford she worked at Procter & Gamble as an assistant brand manager and spent last summer at Google as a product-marketing manager. Chika holds a bachelor's degree from Harvard University where she wrote her honors thesis on race and identity in the black community.
    This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at

Comments • 2 468

  • Honey Punch
    Honey Punch 2 days ago

    Giving you a huge hug. Many thanks and love to you Chika

  • MoistCake
    MoistCake 3 days ago

    Beyonce is a B???? Lol wth

  • Elektriqa
    Elektriqa 5 days ago

    Love her shoulders

  • Sladeofdark
    Sladeofdark 6 days ago

    I dont get it. where is she in my life?

  • cherry-von-bomb
    cherry-von-bomb 8 days ago

    Worth is not derived from appearance, Its from your actions
    The more children are taught, both at school and at home, that colour is what determins your worth and fate in this world, the more problems we will see and we will never move forward from the beliefs of the past
    I was always taught that I determin my worth and other people make the same choices.... It has nothing to do with colour, the sooner it is realised that actions and behaviours are what matters the better our society will be

  • xbatman47
    xbatman47 8 days ago

    In my eye i see a beautiful woman, you have a beautiful tone, if i was 10 years younger Id still be to old. but in my eye, your beautiful !!!!!!!

  • Sophie Hektor
    Sophie Hektor 14 days ago +1

    this is interesting to me. Where I live a lot of people go tanning and there are many products to make yourself look darker. But I never heard of someone who wanted to have lighter skin?

  • Markiza
    Markiza 15 days ago

    We need more dark skin girls and guys in beauty and a white person I am so so bored of seeing THE SAME REPLICA WHITE FACE in magazines and tv.

  • Gae Bren
    Gae Bren 15 days ago

    Why are we rating people. :-(

  • Javier Cooper
    Javier Cooper 15 days ago

    Being white is a privilege.

  • Jay McMullan
    Jay McMullan 16 days ago

    Where did you get your information about slaves and slaveholders? I don't believe it!

  • Jaasmin Christinaa
    Jaasmin Christinaa 18 days ago


  • Benjamin Smith
    Benjamin Smith 19 days ago

    Colorism is real. That said, there is a term "tall, dark and handsome," not tall, light and handsome. And if someone is very white they also are made fun of. And I'm not sure we don't naturally have all have similar standards for judging good looks in people or even animals. When it comes down to it, we over-value appearance.

  • Davieboy
    Davieboy 22 days ago

    This girl is upset at the world not because society thinks she's a "D" girl, BUT because she knows she's a "D" girl and tries to make the rest of us feel bad. Well, "Ddddee girl", I've got something to say too - don't blame it on the good looking people because you're not and don't blame it on the smart people because you're not! You're at Standford, but you're not Standford level. Your limited vocabulary stands as proof against you. It is obvious you're there because of affirmative action!

  • Harold Ferguson
    Harold Ferguson 22 days ago

    This makes me so sad, and ashamed for us. Not only would she be subject to racism, but also colorism!! How sick are we??

  • alfred kokou
    alfred kokou 22 days ago

    Even in Africa the darkest skin is a laughing stock. The whole world prefer light skin . Unfortunately, It is what it is.

  • David Val
    David Val 23 days ago

    Marry me

  • mario soler
    mario soler 23 days ago ke lo ke dice esta mujer tiene sentido; estan mal acostumbrandonos a esa forma de ver el mundo, sus razas & demas, la in-jus-ticia, habito, forma de ser humana esta mal habituandonos a estas formas de ser, ver las cosas, actuar & demas.. yo, personalmente tengo amor × todo ser viviente, no importa su tamaño, genero, especie & demas, amor × todo ser de creaxion × siempre, namaste🙏

  • Michael Robinson
    Michael Robinson 27 days ago

    We are ( blk people) are living the same phenomenon that our ancestors lived in this country, when and how can it stop? That's the question! Mic'19 ADOS get involved!

  • Donald Coder
    Donald Coder 27 days ago

    Try God. His rewards are better and he considers the heart, not appearances.

  • elzie ashmore
    elzie ashmore Month ago

    When comes to races, when we recognize that there only one race. On this island that in this vast sea of stars called Earth. There is a multitude of culture which is affected by the separation by the walls of racism, sexism and other sinister not so many hidden agendas. The beauty is found in the plain truth that there is but one race HUMANITY. That humanity consists of one flash, not light or dark skin. When we recognize this, then we can man can exist as one with him/her self as God intended him to.

  • Qu AudioReact
    Qu AudioReact Month ago


    But in the end when we die we all just turn into this.
    🧟‍♂️🧟‍♀️ (can’t change because all skin turns icky! When you pass on.) because we are human to, just like everyone else.


    These rest updated yet. I remember when I saw these, they didn’t have darker skinned emoji until there was an uproar and people called us complainers.
    I’m proud of these emojis but not proud it took us asking for these and not common sense.
    So now I can use these with all my joy and happiness.
    I do wish for more ethnically corrected hair or maybe natural options, just like there is an option for different colors for the same hair, and a section dedicated to just blonde and ginger hair.

    AYDONIS A Month ago +2

    Allowing Hollywood to determine your standards of beauty is like allowing a McDonald's fast food resturant to determine your dietary requirements. If it's not on the menu, they can't serve you.

  • salvatore dantes
    salvatore dantes Month ago

    dark skin is hot. real hair is needed tho

    ITSLIKEARIVER2000 Month ago

    It has only gotten worse since 2016. whooph.

  • Thomas S
    Thomas S Month ago

    "Just agree with me you morons!" - Ahhh, ok, and maybe you can get a life and standards that are not one inch deep.

  • Reverse Aging
    Reverse Aging Month ago

    You need to take that ridiculous looking weave out of your head. Then you will see your tru beauty !!!

  • The Dodo
    The Dodo Month ago

    I wanna see more of her she is an inspiration!!

  • Nikki .A
    Nikki .A Month ago +1

    Is it just me or does she really sound like miley cyrus?!!

  • Susanne Altoè
    Susanne Altoè Month ago

    What is a D-Girl (see title)?

    • j
      j Month ago +1

      She explains this in the first few minutes of the lecture

  • John Hollins
    John Hollins Month ago

    Never should judge someone by the color of their skin. But by the content of their character, personality, etc...

  • kenyan bavarian
    kenyan bavarian Month ago

    Her beauty can cure racism

  • Mike The Stand
    Mike The Stand Month ago +3

    When we ALL stop looking at skin tones and make the character and abilities the focal points we will make very big steps forward.

  • Patrick Pawol
    Patrick Pawol Month ago

    The Tower of Babel occurred 50,000 years ago. Subsequently, people attained different shades of color. See Journey of Man: A Genetic Odyssey.

  • JoshKatte
    JoshKatte Month ago


  • Josh Perry
    Josh Perry Month ago

    Blacker the berry. Sweeter the juice.

  • YL Calif
    YL Calif Month ago +3

    She's conflicted . . . notice the straightened hair.

  • Mario Antonio Lawrence Sr.

    Thank you my Fulani Queen!!!

  • Steve Kuyenda
    Steve Kuyenda Month ago

    She is a D girl with A standard

  • Malbrough Tishnah
    Malbrough Tishnah Month ago

    It doesn't help tht she wearing tht bad straight hair weave

  • brotherskeeper kenney

    Not trying to undermine tbe message of video.but what is NOT PC to talk about is the even bigger indicator / requirement of who in every race gets the parts in Hollywood. That is those who were raised as part of the elite gender inversion. (egi.) Check it out, it's on YT but many other sources bured (Women w very broad shoulders 3 + head widths, (broader than hips) very long forearms, and many more indicators. Do the homework. Blessings

  • MsNairobi
    MsNairobi Month ago

    You are as dark as me and I consider myself beautiful because I look like Lupita...and I never thought she was beautiful because she looked like me...but the world has affirmed us...we are beautiful!!! ..

  • clyde b
    clyde b Month ago

    I must admit, im blinded by sight

  • Vlad Ivanov
    Vlad Ivanov Month ago

    The first man to have EMBRACED his trolls. And was rewarded for it. Watch and learn

    • Vlad Ivanov
      Vlad Ivanov Month ago

      edit: excuse me, wrong video (this was about William Hung)… But I am Caucasian and this girl is gorgeous.

  • Eiffel Tower
    Eiffel Tower Month ago +1

    Honestly, you are beautiful. Look at what you just did. I'm proud of you. You could have worn something different. This looks more suitable for a party.

    COSMIC EVOL Month ago

    The world of inequality, although it is puffed up to be the real world, is unreal. We need to simply relate to the earth directly and the connectedness of the earth's wonderfully diverse beings. -evol

  • ross meroe
    ross meroe Month ago

    Nigerian girl.

  • Roger Cawkwell
    Roger Cawkwell Month ago

    Well said!

  • wd adam
    wd adam Month ago

    Bad wearing

  • Kudjoe Adkins-Battle
    Kudjoe Adkins-Battle 2 months ago

    There is absolutely no proof that light skinned people worked in the house. Or did less strenuous labor.

  • IT3 Z
    IT3 Z 2 months ago

    Personal power trumps colorism any day. Once you get your mind set on the right thoughts colorism though it exist wont stop or bother you. I see way too many native dark people of all nationalities succeeding. Colorism, Weightism, How Good you look compared to everyone else ismmsssss. Too many to count😂😂😂😂😂

  • Ricky Wilcoxson
    Ricky Wilcoxson 2 months ago +3

    She's Wife material

  • Adrian Nieves
    Adrian Nieves 2 months ago

    Fu** colorist racism bull****. People need to look past the colors of people DAMMIT. It’s not the outside of a person, it’s the person inside that means everything, why can’t people see that. It ain’t right

  • michael feaster
    michael feaster 2 months ago

    2019 .. Why are we still discussing this..

  • Gabrielle McCollins
    Gabrielle McCollins 2 months ago

    Ya'll know melanin is in..the darker you are, more strength, beauty; that's why medical science is researching the benefits of melanin and why we're stronger, don't age, rarely get wrinkles, etc....I really think brothas have the problem selecting dark skinned women..but we dont have an issue selecting dark skinned men. Im medium/dark and dont date men who have this colorism issue. If I see it seeping through..Im gone. I taught my daughter from infancy to be proud of her color and she is a very confident young lady..and then we have family members who tell the men....."dont bring no dark skin girl home" sad... dark skinned males should realize that if they have a child with a light skinned sista, the child can have your skin tone and nothing of the mother...smh..

  • Naturally Queen
    Naturally Queen 2 months ago

    Still the same just worse

  • Aliyahbhat Bhat
    Aliyahbhat Bhat 2 months ago


  • beautiful life
    beautiful life 2 months ago

    Why why why why why.....

  • Joshua Barton
    Joshua Barton 2 months ago

    My tounge would move like a dog drinking water!!!! Yummy

  • maharaja101
    maharaja101 3 months ago

    Whatever the global standard of beauty is, she got it

  • Kaede Sakura
    Kaede Sakura 3 months ago

    why do people sit in the sun and get tanned then?

  • Arjun Nandrajog
    Arjun Nandrajog 3 months ago +1

    i agree with everything but the third actress on the slide is aishwarya rai and she is naturally a fair skinned indian actress...and this problem of light skin vs dark skin is also quite prevalent in india..

  • Jessica
    Jessica 3 months ago

    She is genuinely so pretty omg

  • Piman Mann Jaques
    Piman Mann Jaques 3 months ago +1

    That outfit. smh Good speech though.

  • Pheng Phichvilan
    Pheng Phichvilan 3 months ago

    Her face looks angry lol

  • امير  ااحسيني


  • Asher West
    Asher West 3 months ago

    we are all beautiful...that can be seen in the lenses of love. keep falling in love

  • Moonlight Bae
    Moonlight Bae 3 months ago


  • Miguel Leon
    Miguel Leon 3 months ago

    Racism at its best why does it still happen

  • Zender 2016 C
    Zender 2016 C 3 months ago


  • Flawless gogo
    Flawless gogo 3 months ago

    gosh is no one talking about how inappropraite her outfit is???

  • Manoj Kumar
    Manoj Kumar 3 months ago

    I don't know mam how to speak enģlish.

  • Manoj Kumar
    Manoj Kumar 3 months ago

    I want to speak english. as ĺiķe u .can u teach me.

  • Manoj Kumar
    Manoj Kumar 3 months ago

    You speak very well

  • Manoj Kumar
    Manoj Kumar 3 months ago

    U àre greàt mam

  • Manoj Kumar
    Manoj Kumar 3 months ago

    Mam you are so beautyful

  • Angelic TroubleMaker
    Angelic TroubleMaker 3 months ago

    Yet it is okay for you to rock your 20" Brazilian Hair EXTENSION. 😏SO IN THE END U TAKE THE WEAVE OUT?!!!! OH YOU DONT....😏

  • Angelic TroubleMaker
    Angelic TroubleMaker 3 months ago

    The outfit sis...😏

  • Larissa Ngwe
    Larissa Ngwe 3 months ago +1

    Stop letting society define your level of beauty!! You are a child of God. Your beauty is unmeasurable!!!

  • It's time to stop
    It's time to stop 3 months ago

    Honey you have permed hair and talk like the 80’s valley girl from the breakfast club. Embrace yourself then we can talk.

    • Charity Ervin
      Charity Ervin 3 months ago

      Nothing wrong eith talking proper sometging wrong with wearing weave to be accepted

  • stereotypea123
    stereotypea123 3 months ago +127

    All the guys in the comments section who are only commenting on her looks are missing the whole point. You are still judging her worth based only on her appearance.

    • Monika Donald
      Monika Donald 26 days ago

      I know right.

    • HiredGun 05
      HiredGun 05 27 days ago

      No, I didn't miss the point.
      MY point is that I think she's the prettiest girl in the house, and if I wasn't old enough to be her dad I would be very proud if she would join me for dinner!
      And she's smart, too!
      Beauty and brains in the same package? Hard to find.

      AYDONIS A Month ago

      There is nothing wrong with the appreciation of beauty. You're missing the point: all people are beautiful when they love and accept themselves in spite of any negative outside opinions (a beauty that shines through in their confidence and love of others). Especially in spite of the mindless societal opinions that are cultivated and perpetuated by a handful of rich/powerful people to appeal to whatever it is they think that the masses want- for the benefit of their ever increasing power/wealth. Those powerful few want division and conflict, they thrive off it and use fear and self-doubts to build a strong consumer base. The last thing they would want is confident and content people no matter their outward appearances.

  • Scorpio - Shar777
    Scorpio - Shar777 3 months ago

    I think things are looking up

  • Scorpio - Shar777
    Scorpio - Shar777 3 months ago +1

    The asked the wrong kids

  • Scorpio - Shar777
    Scorpio - Shar777 3 months ago

    Soooo why are you talking about it

  • Aris
    Aris 3 months ago

    Let her rock that weave if she wanna

  • Tovah
    Tovah 3 months ago


  • Des Jones
    Des Jones 3 months ago

    She fine!

  • Arlene Davis
    Arlene Davis 4 months ago +1

    On what given Sunday would she fall into "not in good shape though?"

  • Yandipetal
    Yandipetal 4 months ago

    All these people who don’t truly understand the message and going on about her hair

  • p web
    p web 4 months ago

    Are you an actress?

  • Nisha UnPlugged&UnFiltered

    Her message was amazing but I’m so mad at her dress. I want her in something brighter like Orange or yellow. She’s too beautiful for that color

  • Libra
    Libra 4 months ago

    Most men prefer you lol . I had a friend that look like you everyone think she is a model . Could attract wealthy men too .

  • Paddy Stafford
    Paddy Stafford 4 months ago +1

    It stays with me....bless you Dear!

  • Atanas Gunchev
    Atanas Gunchev 4 months ago +14

    I see an A+ girl here and I love the light lisp.

    ROYAL REBEL 4 months ago +60

    She's a D girl? With THAT body? Pfft!!

  • Eve Live
    Eve Live 4 months ago +5

    I wonder why school has never taught us anything about racism or colorism.

  • The Great GrandDaughter

    job great

  • Gregory Bishop
    Gregory Bishop 4 months ago

    She's an A girl in my movie and my life.

  • Madni Madin
    Madni Madin 4 months ago


  • CindyJo M.
    CindyJo M. 4 months ago +2

    Her outfit is distracting. She's beautiful though.