Brown is beautiful

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 24 2011 01:22 PM | Updated as of Jan 24 2011 11:53 PM

'Stop with the whitening creams,' model tells Pinays

MANILA, Philippines - Model and former VJ Sarah Meier-Albano urged Filipinos to be proud of their God-given brown complexion.

Albano, who is of Swiss, Chinese and Filipino descent, made the call on social microblogging site Twitter following mocha-skinned Danica Flores Magpantay's win in the 2011 Ford Supermodel of the World contest over the weekend.

She also cited how judges of last year's Miss Universe pageant were dazzled by the exotic beauty of Venus Raj, who placed fourth in the beauty contest.

"So to my dear Filipinas - take a look. Venus Raj, Danica Magpantay. Beautiful, dusky, exotic. STOP with the whitening creams already," Albano tweeted.

Filipinos tend to turn to whitening products in an effort to achieve a complexion as fair as most commercial models and Hollywood stars.

Vice President Jejomar Binay earlier noted that a number of skin care companies are distorting the concept of beauty by pushing the use of cosmetics that make a person's complexion lighter.

"Cosmetic firms have been selling their products by subliminally promoting distaste for our natural brown complexion," Binay said in an interview.

He continued, "It is not color that divides us but poverty and hunger. The idea being peddled is that we are not beautiful because we are not fair-skinned. That is not true."

Magpantay, a 17-year-old Fine Arts student of the University of the Philippines, is the first Filipina to win the Ford Supermodel of the World title.

She is the daughter of professional make-up artist Lala Flores, who represented the Philippines in the same contest 20 years ago.

"CONGRATS DANICA!!!!! :) First Filipina to win the Ford Supermodel of the World.. YOU made us proud," Flores said in her Twitter account.

Ford Supermodel of the World, which started in 1980, is the largest and most prestigious international modeling competition, with over 60,000 from 40 countries worldwide.

Another Filipina, Charlene Almarvez, won first runner-up in the said competition last year.