The Colored Girl Project Unites Black Women From All Walks Of Life

Beautiful Women, Black Women
One of the first emotions that I remember feeling growing up as a Black woman is the feeling of inadequacy. 

As a Black woman with light skin, I felt like I was in a constant internal struggle with my identity. Though my darker-skinned peers gave me the endearing names of "light bright", "pee" and casper", it didn't take much more than a "you're pretty for a Black girl"  or a "nappy hair" comment from my white peers to remind me that I was indeed a Black woman.

A new project, The Colored Girl Project, captures stories just like mine from Black women of different backgrounds and various shades of brown.
Founder, Tori Elizabeth on the mission of the project
“I started the ‘The Colored Girl’ Project because I wanted to show the different aspects of beauty as it pertains to Black women. I wanted to highlight and celebrate our unique beauty: our eyes, our lips, our cheekbones. In choosing the models, I was looking for one girl in every shade of brown; I found 10 models on social media.
Beautiful Women, Black Women
Photographer: Joey Rosado
"I wanted women from different social and cultural backgrounds. I wanted women with angular eyes, women with freckles and fair skin and women with really rich, ebony skin. It’s so important to be proud of who we are and showcase the beauty of Blackness.”
Beautiful Women, Black Women
Photographer: Joey Rosado
Co-founder, Victoria Jones on colorism
"It's weird to be made to feel like you're less than for something that you can't help — it sucks. And, when it happens when you're little it's horrible because it scars you. You want to forget it, but it's indelibly engrained in your brain even if you suppress it. It informs choices that you make in the future. I think I'm still overcoming experiences with colorism. You get to a point when you realize that who you are matters more than how you look, but there is still a strength that I have specifically because I live in this skin."
Beautiful Women, Black Women
Photographer: Joey Rosado
TCG Project goes a step further than just taking amazing pictures. It also shares the eye-opening stories of all ten women.
Beautiful Women, Black Women
Photographer: Joey Rosado
"Growing up, my lips were always a source of ridicule. Since then, I've grown to appreciate my looks and love who I am. We come from so much, culturally— how we look is a celebration of that. "
-Leineal Howard
Beautiful Women, Black Women
Photographer: Joey Rosado
"I don't like back-handed compliments those 'you're pretty for a brown girl' statements. When someone tells me that I look like a 'Black Barbie' I often wonder what that means and then they'll say something like 'your features look European, but you're a brown girl.'"
-Malyia McNaughton
Beautiful Women, Black Women
Photographer: Joey Rosado
"What I love the most about being a Black woman is that we have this inner strength that no one else has—I don't know that other people could handle the things that we go through. Being a Black woman demands strength of us."
-Hilda Akua

Check out the behind the scenes from the Essence and Fashion Bomb Daily exclusive below:
ALSO READ: 150+ Makeup Tutorial YouTubers Categorized By The Various Beautiful Shades Of Brown

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Quirky, Brown Love is a media outlet for quirky, brown millennials. EST 2014.

Email Bryanda Law, Editor-in-Chief
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