Beauty Is Only Skin Deep
Peering down from a billboard is the lily-white face of a model. Her skin is flawless and its whiteness is almost blinding. While the model is considered a great beauty, it is her fairness that women envy most. _(1)_ This belief is held most commonly in Asia, Africa, and India, where light skin is regarded as an admirable asset. In China and Japan, whitening has a centuries-long history that spawned the saying,“One white covers up three flaws.”_(2)_ A lighter complexion was also symbolic of wealth. A woman’sfair skin was indicative of her status, showing everyone that she did not have to endure long hours working outdoors.
Nowadays, most workers don’thave to toil in the open air, but they may still be genetically predisposed to tan easily or have darker skin. _(3)_ These whiteners control the production of melanin in the skin. Some are safe and when used properly can achieve the desired results. _(4)_
In Africa, the situation reached epidemic proportions when women in Kenya and Mali were using whiteners containing dangerous levels of chemicals like mercury. _(5)_ In some women, prolonged use of the whiteners led to nerve damage, kidney failure, and even death. Though the laws are now stricter, and fewer of these dreadful products are currently on the market, these deadly whiteners can still be found if one knows where to look. When all is said and done, beauty is still only skin deep, so it is best to think twice before trying too hard to improve on nature.
——by Jerri Graham
(A) However, those that are not regulated or tested can be deadly.
(B) For many women, fair skin is prized and seen as the embodiment of prettiness.
(C) Though genes have taken over, millions of women fight fate with skin whiteners.
(D) Mercury has been illegal in skin care products for decades, but due to lax laws, unsafe whiteners flooded the market.
(E) Passed from generation to generation, this idea was about fair skin having the ability to cancel out average looks.
标准答案: 1. (B) 2. (E) 3. (C) 4. (A) 5. (D)