“Black or White”: why Michael Jackson’s skin turned white

(ORDO NEWS) — The king of pop often became the center of various scandals. And one of the most controversial moments of his biography was the change in skin color.

By the early 1990s, the change in his appearance was more than obvious – Michael Jackson, who once began his career as a black singer, gradually became a man with milky white skin. This “transformation” took about 10 years. But how did it happen?

No, Michael Jackson did not bleach his skin

Contrary to popular belief, Michael Jackson did not bleach his skin . This change was the result of a condition called vitiligo.

Interestingly, vitiligo is far from being the rarest disease – it affects one in 250 people.

Vitiligo leads to depigmentation of the patient’s skin, resulting in white spots on the body. Often, these white spots are almost invisible in people with pale white skin. However, black people are almost impossible to hide.

This is what vitiligo looks like:

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The public was extremely skeptical about the dramatic changes in the artist’s skin color. Jackson first publicly stated that he had vitiligo in an interview with Oprah Winfrey in 1993:

“I have a skin disease that destroys skin pigmentation. This is something I can’t fight. But when people make up stories that I don’t want to be who I am, it hurts me… For me, it’s a problem that I can’t control,” Jackson said.

The condition of the king of pop was confirmed by his dermatologist, Dr. Arnold Klein. According to Klein, Jackson was diagnosed in 1984.

Over time, the condition worsened, and the singer began to use makeup to hide changes in pigmentation. You can see this in the photos where Jackson was sweating:

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Once the spots became too large to be easily hidden with makeup, Jackson began using Benoquin (hydroquinone monobenzyl ester) cream.

Tubes of this cream were found in his home when he died in 2009. In the later stages, Jackson removed dark areas of the skin, as the main part of his skin had already become pale white.


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