Rochelle Humes tried to scrub skin off after suffering racial abuse as child

·Contributor
·2-min read

Rochelle Humes has revealed she tried to scrub her skin off after being subjected to racial abuse at the age of seven.

The This Morning presenter joins Little Mix’s Leigh-Anne Pinnock and Heaven singer Emeli Sande in new Channel 4 documentary The Talk to open up about their experiences of racial prejudice since childhood.

Humes, 31, wipes away tears as she recalls a classmate saying she was not invited to her birthday party because she was black, so she went home and tried to “scrub my skin off”.

Rochelle Humes poses for photographers upon arrival at the Brit Awards 2018 in London, Wednesday, Feb. 21, 2018. (Photo by Vianney Le Caer/Invision/AP)
Rochelle Humes has opened up about racist abuse she suffered as a child. (AP)

The Saturdays singer said: “My legs were red because I’d tried to scrub my skin off.”

Read more: Little Mix's Leigh-Anne Pinnock feared she'd lose career by speaking about racism

She added: “I’m not upset for me, I’m just upset because I think, ‘My little girl is the same age.’ And I just don’t know how I would handle that.”

Humes is mother to daughters seven-year-old Alaia-Mai and three-year-old Valentina with JLS star Marvin Humes and is expecting a baby boy.

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Pinnock, 28, reveals she was passed a note at school which listed her nationality as “jungle”.

She said: “My heart just dropped. I was nine-years-old and I knew it was racism. I was distraught.

LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 04: Leigh-Anne Pinnock attends the "Top Boy" UK Premiere at Hackney Picturehouse on September 04, 2019 in London, England. (Photo by Mike Marsland/WireImage)
Little Mix's Leigh-Anne Pinnock was passed a note in class listing her nationality as 'jungle'. (Getty Images)

“I just wish that I knew more back then, I wish that I was more educated on racism and that I knew that, yes, your race will hold you back a little bit – it will.

“I just wish I knew that so that I could prepare myself and I didn’t question the fact, ‘Oh, I’m not good enough, I’m not pretty enough, why do I feel like this?’”

Read more: Rochelle Humes rescued by husband Marvin after tyre blows

Sande, 33, who was born in Sunderland to a Zambian father and English mother, revealed she was bullied at school over having parents of different races.

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - DECEMBER 19: Emeli Sande performs at Crisis Presents at Hammersmith Apollo on December 19, 2012 in London, England. (Photo by Nick Pickles/WireImage)
Emeli Sande was subjected to racial abuse at school. (Getty Images)

She said: “There was a girl who said, ‘Well, you must be adopted.’ I remember dad running upstairs, finding proof of birth.”

The Talk, which encourages parents to talk openly with their children about racism, airs on Tuesday, on Channel 4 at 10pm.

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