Allure, the internationally acclaimed American women's beauty, fashion and health magazine, has featured local dermatologist Dr Neil Persadsingh in its September issue.
The magazine's monthly circulation is estimated at slightly in excess of more than one million, and is largely renowned for its signature annual Best of Beauty awards and accolades. A 'winners' seal' logo, developed by Allure, appears on many of the winning products. Allure has received 29 awards from the American Academy of Dermatology, nine journalism awards from the Fragrance Foundation, and the Excellence in Media award from the Skin Cancer Foundation.
The magazine has never shied away from controversial health issues, including the risks associated with silicone breast implants. Therefore, it is not surprising that in this month's issue, the focus is on the skin-lightening phenomenon, locally referred to as 'bleaching'.
The article titled 'Beyond the Pale', examines the different dimensions of skin bleaching - cultural implications, health concerns, economic and self-perception issues.
While Persadsingh outlines the health and risk of skin bleaching and sees the strong need to discourage the practice, he is quoted as saying "A lot of people who bleach stop for a while and then go back and bleach and have no medical problems."
The general belief is that skin bleaching is a relatively new phenomenon, linked to the ever-growing bold dancehall culture.
Persadsingh also points out that he started treating patients with skin damage as a result of the use of bleaching products from as early as the 1990s.
Persadsingh has been practising dermatology for more than 30 years; he did his postgraduate training in London at the University of London, and has written three books - Acne in Black Women, The Hair in Black Women and Eczema in Kids of Colour.