Michael Jackson's Skin Condition Rumors Were Finally Put to Rest in His Autopsy

Prior to his unexpected death at age 50, rumors swirled around pop sensation Michael Jackson for a number of reasons. Not the least of which was whether or not he had a medical condition that turned his skin white. At Jackson‘s autopsy, those rumors were finally put to rest.

Before the rumors started

A world-famous performer from the tender age of six, Jackson packed at lot of music into his all too brief lifetime. With older brothers Tito, Jermaine, Marlon, and Jackie, the baby-faced youngster achieved international stardom with catchy pop tunes such as “ABC,” “I Want You Back,” and “The Love You Save.”

Although Jackson’s brothers were talented, it was the youngest member of the Jackson Five who garnered the lion’s share of the public ear along with the hearts and dollars of American teenagers. He was also the sibling about whom the most rumors were whispered.

While performing and recording with the Jackson Five, an adolescent Michael suffered severe acne breakouts but showed no signs of the discoloring skin disease that troubled him later in life. Nor was any unusual skin condition evident when he recorded his single, “Ben.”

By the time he went into the studio to record the Thriller album, however, the 24-year old Jackson was starting to notice odd changes in his skin color.

During a 1993 interview with Oprah Winfrey, Jackson attempted to allay rumors that he was bleaching his skin in an effort to look more Caucasian. Jackson did not reveal the name of the disease that caused drastic disparities in skin tone on his hands, but told Winfrey that rumors that he was dissatisfied with his own race pained him deeply.

“I have a skin disorder that destroys the pigmentation of the skin,” said Jackson. “It’s something I cannot help. When people make up stories that I don’t like who I am, it hurts me.”

Some believed him, some did not

RELATED: Did Princess Diana Inspire Her Friend Michael Jackson’s Hit ‘Dirty Diana’?

Jackson’s explanation as to why his skin color changed was met with both empathy and skepticism from a public that had been wondering (and whispering) about the singer’s drastic change in appearance for several years.

Some, especially those who suffer from the same disfiguring skin malady, completely believed him. Others, including his long time friend and mentor, Quincy Jones, discounted Jackson’s claim.

When asked by Vulture magazine what was most understood about the “Gotta Be Starting Something” singer, Jones replied: “I used to kill him about the plastic surgery, man. He’d always justify it and say it was because of some disease he had. Bullsh*t.”

The real reason Jackson’s skin turned white

Ten years prior to Jackson’s candid interview with Winfrey, Jackson’s personal dermatologist, Arnold Klein, observed symptoms of vitiligo on the singer’s hands and body, explained the Washington Post. The self-proclaimed King of Pop may be the most famous person to publicly disclose their vitiligo, although the condition is diagnosed in thousands of people every year.

Doctors at the University of Massachusetts Vitiligo Clinic and Research Center say that Jackson was good at covering up his vitiligo and that he undoubtedly treated the disfiguring condition with the prescription de-pigmenting cream, Benoquin. Conrad Murray (the disgraced doctor who served two years of a four-year sentence for the death of Michael Jackson) admitted that he applied the bleaching cream to the singer’s body every evening.

By the time he perished in 2009, Jackson’s once chocolate-brown skin was shockingly white. Shortly after his death, CNN revealed that Jackson’s corpse was “lily-white from head to toe” and that his paper-white skin was “as white as a tee-shirt.”

Doctor who did the most to dispel Jackson’s skin condition rumors was the coroner

While examining Jackson’s body at Ronald Reagan Medical Center in Los Angeles, Dr. Christopher Rogers noted “some areas of the skin appear light and others appear dark” and were indeed consistent with vitiligo.

Vitiligo, explains Mayo Clinic, is a non-contagious malady that causes pigment cells to malfunction or die. It’s not fatal, but vitiligo can cause great embarrassment to persons who have it. In Jackson’s case, mortifying rumors suggested that he was changing his skin color on purpose. In the end, it turned out the King of Pop was telling the truth about his skin condition all along.

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Kylie Jenner releases skin care products in Europe with Coty Inc., Douglas

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Surgeon General Jerome Adams asked celebrities like Kylie Jenner and Kevin Durant with large social media followings to help spread the word about the seriousness of the coronavirus.

Kylie Jenner’s skin care line is now available in Europe.

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On Friday, beauty company Coty Inc. announced that customers in Europe can buy Kylie Skin at more than 2,000 Douglas beauty retail stores in 25 countries.

Six products will be available, according to a press release from Coty: a face wash, a face scrub, a moisturizer, an eye cream, a toner and a serum.


Jenner launched her skin care line a year ago, the press release said.

"I am so excited to be celebrating Kylie Skin's first birthday by launching in Europe, at Douglas,” Jenner said in a statement. “The creation of my skincare line was an incredible process for me, from designing the packaging to developing and perfecting the formulas that are now a part of my day to day skincare routine.”


“So many of my fans have been asking me to make my skincare available in Europe, and I’m so happy that they’ll now be able to make my favorite products a part of their daily lives, too,” she added.


In November, Jenner sold a controlling stake in her cosmetics company to Coty for $600 million.

As part of the deal, her company was rebranded from Kylie Cosmetics to Kylie Beauty. The company is primarily known for its lip liners and lipsticks.

Jenner, 22, is the youngest self-made billionaire and is worth an estimated $1 billion, according to Forbes.

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
COTY COTY INC. 3.75 +0.42 +12.61%


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Is dry brushing really worth the hassle?

Written by Shannon Peter

It’s the body care ritual reported to improve circulation and leave you with softer limbs, but does it really live up to its reputation? Stylist investigates the benefits of dry brushing…

Granted, dry brushing isn’t anything new. It’s been a much-lauded self-care ritual practiced by many cultures around the world for centuries now. But in more recent years, the treatment has reached the masses as a key emblem of the modern-day wellness movement. Its devotees claim it boosts circulation, clears toxins trapped in the body’s lymph system and exfoliates the skin. So it’s no wonder why so many people devote ten minutes to dry brushing their entire body every single day.

But that’s a lot of hassle, right? If you’re someone who can barely muster the energy to apply body lotion post-shower (side note: try this one), you’re going to need to know that dry brushing is totally worth it before you even think about adding this new step to your routine. And that’s where we can certainly help. Here’s the need-to-knows of dry brushing: what it is, why it’s beneficial and how to do it.

What is dry brushing?

Dry brushing, quite simply, involves sweeping a dry, often natural-bristle brush over the entire body.

What are the benefits of dry brushing?

While there’s been very few studies to evidence its reported benefits, many experts back dry brushing as an excellent way to exfoliate and boost the circulation.

First and foremost, dry brushing works as an excellent exfoliating ritual to help buff away dead skin cells clinging to the skin’s surface, leaving you with much smoother, softer limbs. It isn’t necessarily going to exfoliate as rigorously as your favourite body scrub, but according to Noella Gabriel, founder of Elemis, it can enhance the results of the body products you use later on in your routine — if you do it regularly enough. “It kickstarts the lymph and circulatory systems and frees the healthy skin layers by removing the dead skin cells that can block pores,” she says.

And the benefits extend beyond the surface, too. “Daily dry body brushing is recommended for the removal of impurities from under the skin’s surface and it is extremely useful for decongesting all the systems of the body,” she explains. “Your energy levels, immunity and your personal rejuvenation are all areas of improvement you can look for when you make body brushing a regular habit.” 

And if nothing else, take it from us: your body certainly feels better after dry brushing. More energised. More invigorated.

How do you dry brush your body?

There’s no need to make dry brushing overly complicated, but if you want to reap the most of those reported benefits, then there is a bit of technique worth acquiring .

“Begin at the soles of your feet then continue working up the front and back of the legs in an upward direction towards the heart,” explains Gabriel. As you work your way up the body onto the stomach, back, arms and chest, ensure all strokes are in the direction of the heart to improve circulation.

And do be careful. Dry brushes tend to be fairly rough, so you don’t want to scratch the skin. “Brush the body in a sweeping light upward motion,” recommends Gabriel. “There’s no need to exert pressure, just let the bristles of the brush do the work for you.” She also suggests keeping the body brush flat and in contact with the body at all times to avoid scrubbing or leaving the skin feeling sore.

When and how often should you dry brush?

Inherently energising, dry brushing is best done in the morning, right before you take a shower, as the exfoliation will mean any body washes, oils or lotions you use after will have a better chance of nourishing your skin. And for the best results, most experts recommend you do it every day. Don’t have the time? That’s fine. Just do it as often as you can. 

The best dry brushes:

  • Best for: extra reach

    Elemis Body Detox Skin Brush

    Where traditional body brushes are held in the palm, Elemis’ one comes with a removable handle to help you reach the trickiest parts of your back.

    £21, Elemis.com


  • Best for: firm bristles

    The Body Shop Round Body Brush

    If you have particularly dry skin, you’re going to want slightly firmer bristles that will chip away at the dead skin cells built up on the surface of the limbs. The Body Shop’s brush is especially rigorous.

    £9, The Body Shop 


  • Best for: a built-in massage

    Anatome Detox Body Brush

    Anatome’s body brush comes with built-in massaging prongs that feel great on tight shoulders and calves.

    £11, Anatome


  • Best for: soft bristles

    Dr Barbara Sturm Body Brush Soft No1

    Prefer something much gentler? Dr Barbara Sturm offers brushes in varying densities, and this one is particularly soft. 

    £25, Net-a-Porter


Images: Getty / courtesy of brands.

If you’re an avid Stylist fan, you’ll know it’s not always possible to find an issue of our magazine. Often they’re gone before you head into work (they disappear fast!), or you live in a part of the UK where you can’t get your hands on a copy. Add to this the fact that millions of us are not commuting right now, and we wanted to ensure you don’t miss out on the magazine any longer.

Which is why we’re delighted to let you know that Stylist magazine is now available in a digital format, both for Apple and Android users, allowing you to download the full magazine directly to your smartphone or tablet, wherever you may be.

Pricing for our digital magazine starts at just 99p for a single issue, or £21.99 for a full year’s subscription – that’s less than 50p a week! Simply click on the link to activate your Stylist app download from either the Apple store or Google Play and enjoy!

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