Lupita Nyong'o Teaches Children to Embrace Natural Beauty in Upcoming Book

Lupita Nyong'o
Steven Ferdman/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images

Lupita Nyong'o attends the 2018 The National Board Of Review Annual Awards Gala at Cipriani 42nd Street on Jan. 9, 2018 in New York City. 

Coming next year to a library near you.

Lupita Nyong'o is dipping her toes into the world of children's literature with a new book titled Sulwe, which is due out in January 2019 from Simon & Schuster for Young Readers. According to The New York Times, which broke the news Thursday (Jan. 18), the picture book is about a 5-year-old Kenyan girl named Sulwe (which means "star" in Nyong'o's native language), who, as the darkest-skinned member of her family, wants to lighten her skin. Words of wisdom from her mother, however, eventually help Sulwe look at the idea of beauty from a new perspective.

The actress confirmed the project on Instagram on Thursday, writing, "I am pleased to reveal that I have written a children's book! … Sulwe is a dark skinned girl who goes on a starry-eyed adventure, and awakens with a reimagined sense of beauty. She encounters lessons that we learn as children and spend our lives unlearning. This is a story for little ones, but no matter the age I hope it serves as an inspiration for everyone to walk with joy in their own skin."

Nyong'o has long been a champion of embracing one's natural beauty despite conventional standards. In 2014, she spoke about her own difficulties learning self-love and the importance of representation in that quest. Late last year, she called out Evening Standard magazine for photoshopping her natural hair on its cover.

"As I have made clear so often in the past with every fiber of my being, I embrace my natural heritage and despite having grown up thinking light skin and straight, silky hair were the standards of beauty, I now know that my dark skin and kinky, coily hair are beautiful too," she wrote on Instagram at the time. "Being featured on the cover of a magazine fulfills me as it is an opportunity to show other dark, kinky-haired people, and particularly our children, that they are beautiful just the way they are."

This article was originally published by The Hollywood Reporter.


The Biz premium subscriber content has moved to

To simplify subscriber access, we have temporarily disabled the password requirement.