Tia Mowry has opened up about her relationship with fame, struggles with self-image and the discrimination she faced as a teen star.
“To this day, I’m always telling my beautiful brown-skinned girl that she is beautiful,” Mowry says of her daughter in a candid conversation on ET’s Unfiltered. “And the same thing even with my son. I tell him how handsome he is, I tell him, you know, he is smart. Because I know what it feels like for someone to devalue your worth, and I don’t want my children to ever, ever, ever, feel that. And not have the strength, or the foundation, to not believe it. To believe that they are worthy.”
The actress recalls a moment during the height of the popularity of “Sister, Sister,” the show she starred on with her twin sister, Tamera.
“So my sister [Tamera] and I wanted to be on the cover of this very popular [teenage] magazine at the time,” Mowry recalls. “We were told that we couldn’t be on the cover of the magazine because we were Black and we would not sell.”
“I will never forget that. I will never forget where I was,” she continues. “And I wish I would have spoken up. I wish I would have said something then. I wish I would have had the courage to speak out and say that wasn’t right.”
As a Black girl growing up in the industry, Mowry admits she was full of insecurities. “I would feel insecure about my hair because being young and being in this business, I never saw girls like me. I never saw girls that, you know, were embracing their curls or I never saw curly hair being portrayed as beautiful,” she explains.
“I love that now I’m seeing images that are really embracing natural, beautiful, curly hair and just beautiful Black women in all shades — dark, light skin, brown,” she says. “Representation is important and that really helped me, meaning me seeing those images is what helped me embrace my natural beauty.”
Mowry cites her mother, Darlene, as an example of what it meant to be “this strong, confident, beautiful Black woman,” adding that “she has beautiful dark skin and her skin is just so smooth. She’s just the epitome of beauty.”
These days, Mowry says “What matters to me is that I inspire. That I encourage. That I can bring joy to people. That is what makes me happy now.”
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