The Rise Of The BBL : Code Switch Black women have always faced immense pressure to make their bodies look a certain way. But if done the "wrong way," achieving that idealized figure can lead to just as much scrutiny and critique. So today, we're talking about the cosmetic procedure known as a Brazilian Butt Lift, and what its rise in popularity illustrates about the type of bodies that do and don't get valued.

The Rise Of The BBL

The Rise Of The BBL

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1041366972/1041390578" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript
LA Johnson/NPR
Abstract figure forms shapes
LA Johnson/NPR

Black women have always faced immense pressure to make their bodies look a certain way. But if done the "wrong way," achieving that idealized figure can lead to just as much scrutiny and critique as having a body that isn't considered ideal. So today, we're talking about the cosmetic procedure known as a Brazilian Butt Lift, and what its rise in popularity illustrates about the type of bodies that do and don't get valued.

On this episode, we speak to Hannah Giorgis, a staff writer at The Atlantic, about her new essay, What Makes A Black Woman Real? In it, she writes, "For most of the country's history, Black women have been necessarily excluded from the dominant narrative about beauty—that is to say, beauty as an instrument of social and economic power. And for all the understandable concern about botched surgeries and predatory clinicians, there's been precious little acknowledgment of how unrelenting the social pressures facing Black women can be, and how few avenues exist for advancement and personal fulfillment in such a hostile climate."