The Queen of Dark – The Sudanese-Born Model Embracing Her Gorgeous Dark Skin and Promoting Diversity

Nyakim Gatwech is a Sudanese-born fashion model known primarily for her melanin-rich skin, which has earned her the nickname ‘Queen of Dark’.

As a refugee growing up in camps in Ethiopia and Kenya, Nyakim Gatwech was never ashamed of her super dark skin and her South Sudanese heritage, but when her family immigrated to the United States when she was 13-years-old, her different appearance made her the target of bullies. Some of the kids at her school in Buffalo, New York, could be very mean, and having never had to deal with racism before, she was confused. Some middle-schoolers were afraid to her, while others made fun of her dark skin tone, and she would come home crying unable to explain to her parents what was going on. Things improved when she moved to St. Cloud, Minnesota for high school, and became with other Sudanese and Somali kids, but she never really felt like she belonged. Even today, some of the things people say about her skin make her feel uncomfortable, but she has learned to take them in stride and educate instead of complaining.

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