Indians are known by their complete obsession with the fairness quotient. So much so that the top names of the Bollywood have been roped into the fairness trade show.
Looking beautiful is a dream of every human. Tale of snow white is legendary. Her evil stepmother used to question her magical mirror each day. The story goes on finding the fairest maiden in the kingdom. But we Indians are definitely going a notch higher over our skin color.
Nivea kicked a hornet’s nest by showing an advert on a black model turning white using their cream. The same went for Dove which advertised one such jibe and invited ire of intelligent people.
The famous English proverb states, “Never Judge a book by its cover” yet we all unwillingly judge a future daughter in law through her outer looks. We on one hand stand tall against the racist behavior our Father of nation met at South Africa on being a ‘brownie’ yet remain adamant on judging the countrymen on similar parameters. We pray to a dark skinned deity (Krishna) to lead us through the tough phase yet expect our Lakshmi of house to be the prettiest girl in the town. Aren’t we hypocrite?
If statistics are to be believed, in 2012 the market was the highest grosser in the facial care segment at 233 million pounds! On the other side of the world, the people vie for the tanned look.
Joining the fairness divide are our role models: Shahrukh Khan (Brand: Fair and Handsome), Sonam Kapoor (Brand: Loreal),
Yami Gautam (Brand: Fair and Lovely), Deepika Padukone (Brand: Neutrogena), etc. This leads to the important question: Is India really shining?
Beauty divides us:
Growing up as a darker beauty in the country means that the parents have to fill out the pockets of hungry in laws. Whoa! Where did the search for sarvagun sampann talented bride went to? Answer: The bin.
Celebs who stood up against it:
Reports have that heartthrob Sushant Singh Rajput turned down a 15 crore offer of endorsement of fairness creams.
Nandita Das, Abhay Deol, Nawazuddin Siddiqui and Uday Chopra in their own way slammed their counterparts against promoting hidden racism through the fairness ads.
Arjun Rampal took a gig on other co stars in his advertisement for Nivea men and went to paint the face white (as a jibe into the fairness divide).
Joined the bandwagon was the ‘Queen’ Kangana Ranaut who remained undeterred on her personal ethics. What came as a surprise was Globetrotting actress: Priyanka Chopra who went to apologise for endorsing one such racial punch early in her career.
Kudos to great thinkers for being there against the potential wrong.
The other side of story entails us to consider the hullabaloo surrounding the content of ads. Let us question the personal freedom of the users. A darker friend of mine stated that her confidence level spikes immediately on applying her favorite fairness cream. Her enthusiasm was contagious to the extent that we decided to remain mute spectators.