Does success come only to beautiful people?
Does success come only to fair people?
Does beauty mean only fair skin?
It seems so, even to this day. If you have been keeping a tab on few of the latest advertisements, there is one very latest one which has brought out a new men's fairness cream to the market.
The advertisement goes something like this - A person is shown questioning another guy in an interview. The questions are what an interviewer asks an interviewee. But it turns out the other way, it is the interviewee who puts up an over-confident aggressive behavior and asks "When do you want me to join?" Then the panel of interviewers are revealed on the screen and the interviewer who was questioned all the while says "Tomorrow".
What follows is the blah-blah of confidence and other positive qualities that seems to come by using fairness cream! All these days, they were selling this preposterous idea depicting women as victims of having a dark skin; lack of job opportunities, delay in marriage and all that nonsense. Now men too!!
What I admire is the chutzpah of these marketing team to go ahead with such concepts to sell. Or is it that they are merely taking advantage of our weakness to fair skin? When the British left, they left behind the concept of fair skin dominance and success! How sad. Why is the infatuation with fair skin among us?
Why do we have to blame the advertising agencies? They are doing their homework well. How many parents are happy with a dusky girl baby? Lets be honest here, even though it would be unbelievable. My mom has tried all her mighty best to pursue me in applying creams and consuming food that could 'improve' my color. I do not blame her. Poor thing!! she wanted her child to find better prospectus. Is this not a deep rooted racism? Are we not insulting ourselves? Look around, bus stops, TV, magazines, in stores - you see hoardings everywhere. Any marriage advertisements read thus - Fair skinned. Have you see any marriage advertisements or proposals asking for "DARK/DUSKY" only apply?
We do talk at length about how America had arrived when Mr. Obama was made the President. There is no craze for fairness creams in America. Dark skinned models are used as frequently as the white ones. There are no qualms, of course there are exceptions as everywhere else. Yet our media went gung-ho about the global progress American achieved.
And we see - skin lightening cream, white glow? What is that white glow? Why don't we understand our skin is not of that type. Indian movies influence us a lot, how many dusky beauties do we see in movies? Or why are they branded DUSKY and others not branded "WHITE' or 'FAIR'? The WHITEST is the most successful and highest paid. Teleserials and movies also tend to have a story line around how the duskier girl finds it tough to find a guy for marriage. A girl is dejected as she never gets an opportunity, she uses fairness cream and becomes an actress and gets the Best Actor Award!!
Does anyone of us recall any advertisement which uses dark-skinned Indian to sell the product? If you saw one or two, they would be a playing a peon, sweeper...Heights of absurdness.
Fairness cream market share is alone over whopping 700 crore in India, and the annual growth rate is not less than 20%. Our skin texture is different. Achieving fairness, at what cost? The main ingredient is bleaching agent, so we know what it would do to the skin. Do the fairness cream deliver what it promises? NO!! Everyone knows that it would do more harm than good.
Yet, why is the market so thriving and influential that our superstars endorse it? These superstars whom millions revere are not ashamed. Do you recall the tag line of Fair N Lovely? THE POWER OF BEAUTY. Our preconceived notion that fair is beautiful and that being fair means success comes without any effort. What does it mean by the Power of Beauty? So dusky ones don't stand a chance at all? Or worse, don't they deserve a chance at all?
And LOREAL's WHITE PERFECT? Notice it? Aishwarya Rai promotes it. Time and over, influential people like these keep taunting their fellow citizens that skin color matters, even when its only a minor percentage that are fair skinned here.
We talk at length about talent and at the same time run behind acquiring fair skin guaranteeing success? Are we Indians schizophrenic? If so, its high time we get sane!