Osaka also shared details on what inspired her to launch her brand new skin-care brand, Kinlò
Naomi Osaka graced the cover of Women’s Health‘s September Issue and dropped plenty of gems in her wide-ranging interview with the magazine.
Osaka has used her platform in powerful ways in 2021. From speaking about mental health and the media following her pull out from the French Open, to her stirring piece written for Time Magazine earlier this year, the tennis star has shined a light on what she is passionate about, blossoming into a powerful role model. In a piece written by Liz Plosser for Women’s Health, Osaka dived into growing up, the media and her desire to help others.
MASON, OHIO – AUGUST 19: Naomi Osaka of Japan serves to Jill Teichmann of Switzerland during the Western & Southern Open at Lindner Family Tennis Center on August 19, 2021 in Mason, Ohio. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
When it comes to claims from the press that Osaka is shy or “standoffish”, Osaka had the time to break all of that down with Women’s Health. “Growing up being [labeled] ‘the quiet one’ puts you in a box and, even worse, makes you stand out when all you want is to blend in,” she told the magazine. “But now I try to embrace and own it.”
Osaka made it clear she will continue to embrace who she is and not change for anyone, especially the press. She continued, “I never wanted media training. Because I didn’t want to change my personality to offer a canned response that didn’t feel like me. Yes, some people may find my personality different, just as they do my mixed-race background, but I find it to be the thing that makes me uniquely myself.”
When it came to stepping back and speaking openly about her mental health journey, she told the magazine, “I hope I was able to help some people and for them to see that even athletes are still humans like the rest of us. And we all are dealing with something in our lives.” She added, “Now more than ever I see that you can be more than just one thing. More than just someone who plays tennis.”
TOKYO, JAPAN – JULY 23: Naomi Osaka of Team Japan carries the Olympic torch towards the Olympic cauldron during the Opening Ceremony of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Olympic Stadium on July 23, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan. (Photo by Hannah McKay – Pool/Getty Images)
The Women’s Health interview, Osaka explained on her Instagram, comes in anticipation of her upcoming skin-care line, Kinlò. When discussing skin research for Black and brown people, she told the magazine, “Playing in the sun since I was 3, I don’t even second-guess sunscreen and sun care…I never imagined how eye-opening the statistics on skin cancer in brown and Black skin would be.”
“It wasn’t enough to make products that didn’t turn our dark skin white and didn’t have harsh chemicals,” she shared. “I also wanted to dispel the myth that just because you have dark skin and don’t burn means you don’t need to take care of and protect that skin.”
Check out the full interview with Women’s Health, here.
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