Despite being considered one of Hollywood’s most handsome men, Taye Diggs didn’t always see himself as the desirable heartthrob fans make him out to be. In a recent interview with MyBrownBaby, the Private Practice star reveals that a magazine article featuring model Tyson Beckford gave him the confidence to be proud of his deep brown complexion.
“When I saw Tyson Beckford hailed as this beautiful man by all people, that caused a shift in my being,” Diggs said. “I remember literally waking up and walking the streets the next day and, because I had a bald head as well, feeling a little bit more proud.”
In reflection of his insecure past, Diggs wrote “Chocolate Me!,” a children’s book that encourages kids to feel comfortable in their skin. He shares with MyBrownBaby:
On why he wrote “Chocolate Me!”…
“The idea to write this book came far before I was a father. I knew that I wanted to be a father, but that had no influence on the actual writing of the book. The inspiration came straight from more of an experience of being a son… my mother’s son. That being said, once we got pregnant, my perspective completely transformed and though the words didn’t change, though the message didn’t change, how I felt about what I was writing changed and I just started to get really excited for the day that I could read my book to my son. And every time I continue to read the book to my son—now he can say the words along with me—words can’t explain how it makes me feel.”
On his self-esteem at a young age…
“When I got into high school I started to hear, just from the black community, everybody is more attracted to the light skin girls and the light skin dudes with the light eyes. And from within the race the light skin black people and lighter brown people would make fun of the darker people. So then it was a completely different kind of struggle. And then funnily enough it was when dark skinned men, and this was just from my perspective, there seemed to be a shift where all of a sudden we saw Denzel Washington, Wesley Snipes, Tyson Beckford. I’m still trying to figure out how this came to be. For me, when I saw Tyson Beckford hailed as this beautiful man by all people, that caused a shift in my being. And I remember literally waking up and walking the streets feeling a little bit more proud. And then after the movie “How Stella Got Her Groove Back,” when I had my own personal moments of weakness, I just had to remind myself of all the people that really enjoyed that movie and just kind of lean on that. “