Skin Color and the Tropics

Here are a couple of excellent maps showing, first, the tropics, and second, skin color around the world.

It’s curious to me that dark skin is devalued. I grew up on the beach in Southern California. In the summer I lived at the beach and surfed. While I wasn’t surfing, I was living in a cloud of marijuana smoke. In the winter, I lived at the ski slopes, once again in a marijuana fog. All year, I chased women, listened to hard rock music and sold pot. Life has never been better.

I had bleached long hair and a year-round tan. This was the idea. Surfer and skier society was White society, but it was not racist. There simply were few if any non-Whites in the scene. But those non-Whites that were in scene were completely accepted as normal, see Bobby Nishi, once of the greatest surfers of all time. I once threw a party in my house and at one point I caught Bobby in my brother’s bedroom screwing some chick. No one cared, and everyone thought it was funny. Women swarmed to Bobby like bees to blossoms.

Skin color map for the world. It gets awful dusky in Africa and parts of Latin America, but that's where the UV is, so come on. Evolution is adaptive.

Thing was, we were always trying to be brown. How brown? I’m not sure if it ever came up. Obviously, White people can only get so brown, but our mestizo and NE Asian friends did get a lot browner with the sun, but no one seemed to care. None of us Whites got as dark as Black people, but if we could have, it might even have been cool, who knows? Whether we were as brown as mestizos is hard to say. We were certainly as brown as a lot of the lighter mestizos.

The fascinating thing was that growing up on the beach, we thought that pale, White skinned White girls were ugly! Everyone wanted a bitchin’ tan. The pale skinned White thing came back with the punk rock thing in the late 70’s and early 80’s, but at the time, it was bad news.

UV radiation chart for the Earth. Pretty much lines up with the skin color chart, and why not? Evolution ain't stupid.

This makes me wonder about this White nationalist thing that everywhere on Earth, humans and males in particular have a preference for lighter skin, which is of course superior, right? Except that my So Cal White culture was an exception to all of that. Therefore, what? My culture was a genetic aberration? Come on. I’ll side with the Cultural Left assholes here and say that this whole light skin preference thing is socially constructed. It’s not some inborn bias or instinct.

In Africa, males have no preference for lighter skin in females, and female Africans do vary quite a bit in skin color. In Tasmania, Tasmanians actually preferred darker skin in women! I suppose they had a special genetic mutation, huh?

There does seem to be evidence that men prefer females to be lighter through all cultures, but there women have no preference at all for men. Tall, dark and handsome isn’t exactly a reference to the melanin-deficient White dude. As commenter tulio notes, this is probably a preference for youth, since our skin is lighter as babies and children and grows darker as we age, except in guys like me, where my dark brown hair is paradoxically turning light grey as I age. But go figure!

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9 thoughts on “Skin Color and the Tropics”

  1. The tendency of whites to get suntanned is only a fad, nothing more. During the middle ages, aristcoracy had pale skin, because they could afford it, in contrast to peasants. In China it was the same, they looked at darker skin down upon. But in present day China we see different and certainly more natural thing than in the West: they prefer lighter skin in women, it is natural preferrence in contrast to what we see in white societies.
    http://edition.cnn.com/2002/WORLD/asiapcf/east/05/13/asia.whitening/
    Until now i wrote about racially homogenous societies, it is natural that in multiracial societies the groups with lighter skin will have better socioeconomic status due to their higher IQs and therefore they make lighter skin more desirable.
    Interesting reading:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Colorism
    One more explantation:
    http://www.ethology.ru/english/?id=35

    1. Yes, but they are just subculture, just as the “guidos”. And I dont like girls who are too much tanned, I consider it unnatural. The girl looks nice, youre right, there is something about it.

    2. could afford pale skin? lol sounds stupid. melanin is power is earthly and natural. that’s the only thing that is being bought. lol

  2. Aristocracy had paler skin because they weren’t working outside like the peasants however I know someone with type 2 diabetes who has two brothers. One of his brothers has type 2 diabetes as well and one doesn’t. The one who doesn’t has done manual labor his whole life and the one who does has led a sedentary lifestyle… and the guy I know has led a sedentary lifestyle too. Sedentary lifestyles cause diabetes.

  3. This study (http://www.healthhabits.ca/2009/11/19/what-does-healthy-look-like/) seems to find that increased redness, yellowness (correlated with melanins) and whiteness (correlated away from melanins) ALL seem to correlate with the idea of skin health and beauty. It might be the case that while whiteness, redness and yellowness are all desirable qualities, there’s an optimum space where pushing the face in one direction (i.e. towardness more whiteness for example by reducing melanin) will reduce other qualities (like redness or, in the case of melanin, yellowness) in a way that makes the skin suboptimal and that the evolution of preference just “wanders” around that “optimal space” in a kind of random fashion (likely subject to constraint by the local environment, i.e. UV).

    (On this topic, my personal theory on why humans may like relatively light skin is because we’re primates with good colour vision and so like skin in which the anti-UV pigments aren’t blocking our ability to see the health/sickness indicated by facial blood flow, of course constrained by the degree to which we need those anti-UV pigments – though this totally might end up being a just so type evo-psych story, so don’t place much faith in).

    Alternatively, people are probably also smart enough to figure out what the appropriate skin tone is for having resistance to the sun (for their region) and to favor that. Even if ceteris paribus white skin is more attractive, it might not look that way when the pale would-be beach bunnies get sunburn.

    Or there might be a degree to which ability to tan is seen as a favoured trait in some populations and so it’s “tannability” rather than darkness or lightness which bestows the acolade of attractiveness.

  4. Your color chart is totally off and bigoted. The majority of people in central Asia and the middle east have very light skin and are Caucasian. You’re a very prejudice and ignorant individual.

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