It’s time to be ‘fair’

SSP

I am not much into TV serials and specially not the saas-bahu soaps. But I do watch some light hearted and comic stuff once in a while. Also, we generally tend to watch TV while having dinner. The prime time, as it is called. The one when there are many viewers glued to the idiot box and maximum TRPs and thus, maximum ads. Now, you may be thinking what am I blabbering about the idiot box with a post titled as this. The real observation starts here….

When watching the telly, I have noticed that out of 10 advertisements aired during the prime time, at least 4 are about products claiming to make you fair. That makes a decent 40% of the ads.  Skin – lightening Creams, skin lightening soaps, talcum powder with skin lighting qualities (meh!), moisturizing creams with skin lightening elements, anti-aging products with skin lightening properties, acne removal creams with skin lightening agents, men’s creams and face washes (yes, fair and handsome!!) …aarghhh!!! If this is not enough, the leads in the remaining ads, males, females and even kids are majorly fair ones. Or the darker ones with so much grease paint on and made to look fair!! Be it an advertisement for fans, chocolates, durables, clothes etc etc etc.. The darker shade is shown only to depict something ugly, bad or a negative character.

The society wants it and so the media feeds it. The media highlights it and thus the society wants it more. Vicious circle? Yes it is! Did you know that the fairness cream industry in India is as huge as Rs. 3000 crores?

In a country where the natural color of the skin is wheatish to brown due to the geographical reasons, why are we so fixated on being fair? What is it that fair people can do but brown cannot? Why is everybody hell bent on lightening their complexions? Why is a skin tone so bloody important while judging a personality of a person? Why is good looking associated with being fair? Why does every groom wants a ‘fair bride’ even when he is a color close to coal? Why do the unborn kids are expected to be fair when their parents are wheatish? Why does every compliment has to include cute and ‘fair’? Can’t someone of a darker shade be more good looking and presentable than someone who is fairer? Are not brown horses more alluring and appealing than the white braying donkeys?

Sorry donkeys, I apologize, I do not mean to demean you. I just wanted the ones with the white color fixation in their head to know the difference. So used you as an example. Please don’t mind.

Even during my wedding the make-up artist was hell bent on making me look fair. “Photos ache aayenge” was her explanation when I asked. I washed my face and told her to re-apply the stuff again, maintaining my skin tone and using a foundation suitable with my shade. And yes, I was looking very beautiful and glowing because I am proud of the color I am. I was smiling the whole day because I was in the dress that I loved and was marrying the person who loved me the way I am. I was smiling because I was happy and thus, the photos turned out to be beautiful! My skin color had no role to play in this! Being wheatish or dark is beautiful. When someone comments on your skin tone, if you can feel proud about it and not get offended, that is all that matters.

Until and unless people stop associating being dark as being ugly, this will continue. It’s no big deal in being fair. Being presentable and having confidence is more important. Not all scientists, doctors, models, corporates are fair. Yet they are way ahead of their times. We have to stop differentiating amongst people on the basis of their skin tone.

It’s time to start reciting stories to kids involving chocolate brown colored fairies and queens. It’s time to stop the racism prevailing. It’s time to give its due to being dark. It’s time to raise a toast for everyone out there irrespective of their color. It’s time to understand that even dark is as beautiful. It’s time to stop being shallow and look beyond the skin tone. It’s time to be colorblind. It’s time to change.

It’s time to be ‘fair’, not in context of skin tone but in terms of treating people.

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About Shweta

An ambitious professional who loves working in a corporate as much as she loves spending time with family. Pursues writing as a passion and writes for stuff that closely touch the heart!
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25 Responses to It’s time to be ‘fair’

  1. hemangfans says:

    seems u wanna stop some advertising agency ….. on a serious note… there is heavy margin on these products and hence the company can afford to spend huge amount of money in marketing such products. Also i don’t see any racism if any company wants to sell its product.

    Like

    • Shweta says:

      Its not about selling a product. Its about depicting an image and creating a mindset. Products sell only when we have a market for such products. Its not wrong. What is incorrect is associating being dark as being ugly!

      Like

    • On the same lines you could say – I don’t see any sexism if people want to use ultrasound machines to kill unborn girls. Not my problem.

      To take it further – let them rape and mayhem. Sells the movie. Not my problem. Why get the censor board involved?

      Look what happened with the Nazis. Hitler convinced an entire nation that Jews were inferior, and they believed!

      This *is* our problem. We have to educate society. Otherwise we’re rearing a class of children with damaged self-esteems who will,forever, think they’re somehow inferior because they were told so. We have that social responsibility.

      Like

      • Shweta says:

        It is a “who came first – the chicken or the egg” situation!!

        **The society wants it and so the media feeds it. The media highlights it and thus the society wants it more. Vicious circle** as I said!!!

        We have the responsibility to stop “aiming” to be fair!! It is not an achievement! And being dark is as lovely as being fair. Why the difference? I don’t understand!!! 😐 and I equally hate it!! Ughh!!

        Like

  2. Sonal Jain says:

    Woo Hoo!!!! *hoots*

    Awesome awesome awesome…
    you were right! Loved it! Totally!

    Like

  3. Tushar Dhanwani says:

    Its all about fair n dark as these things depends on person to person as we can have lots of example of dark ppl who have done great job n still dng , like mahatma Gandhi, Obama who is rulling the powerful country in the world n lots more examples can be set. I think i went of the track , as per concern of add in tv that’s a business for running a business they have to show u gud n bad pictures n they have to use these tricks to run their business 😋

    Like

    • Shweta says:

      Tricks are fair only if they are not derogatory to a certain section of people. You cannot continue to offend people to market your products!!
      Unethical and sick, i call it!!

      Like

  4. parul shirodaria says:

    Its difficult to change the mind set of ppl
    But better to keep own mind in right place
    Best way is to pity them who pass comments
    on skin colour
    Just leave them in their own ‘fair’ world

    Like

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  6. BellyBytes says:

    I agree with you. We do have this hang up about being fair….sad but true.

    Like

    • Shweta says:

      Things change but they take their own sweet time to change! We can hope and work towards creating a better society. Sounds preachy to my own ears 😛
      But true it is!! 🙂

      Like

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    This post has been selected for the Spicy Saturday Picks this week. Thank You for an amazing post! Cheers! Keep Blogging 🙂

    Like

  8. Well, people aspire to become or achieve what they don’t have. Don’t the western folks love getting tanned? How many times do you hear them saying – “Wow! What a wonderful tan you have got?” However, I agree with you on the obsession “being fair” holds in our country.

    Like

    • Shweta says:

      It’s not about ‘aspiring to become fair’ it’s more about the drive behind these aspirations. We may need to sit and think whether these so called aspirations are majorly because the obsession and a feeling of being looked down upon due to complexion!!!

      My only concern is the projection of a ‘dark skin’. I would never mind if it was treated as casually as ‘’oh! how beautiful hair you have got’’ or ‘‘wow, your blessed with such a great height’’

      Like

  9. Amit says:

    I remember that a few months back, there was a fake news about some pills that pregnant mothers can use to make their babies fair.
    The sad part is that a lot of people took that news to be true and asked for the price. That is the sad state of things.

    Like

  10. ANooP says:

    I happened to read your post only now. A great observation and I agree with you that white or black doesn’t matter.
    As far as TV ad’s are concerned I have a slightly different opinion. Again it’s subjective. We always tend to take things shown in TV personally. If there is a parody against BJP or Congress, we react and make a big deal of it. WHY? Why do we take these ads personally. Why does it spark in our mind and make us feel bad and insecure? It’s upto us to educate the people and tell them there is nothing to do with skin color. Ads are there because demand is there. Cut off the demand and see the supply go down.
    This is just my opinion and I would like to congratulate you on your effort. I hope this article is read by whole of my countrymen 🙂
    Cheers

    Like

    • Shweta says:

      Thanks so much for your comments, Anoop. I am glad you liked a little piece on the evil that has gripped our society so deeply.
      I agree it’s not fair to put the blame entirely on TV ads. But it does affect the mindset of people. Media has that sort of obscene power.
      But again, they are just feeding their tummies and earning a living. So they may not agree about how much harm they cause.
      All we can do is cut the demand and make people aware that dark is beautiful! Keep writing in. Cheers!

      Like

  11. Our addiction with fair skin has gone so sick that Mahabharat TV serial shows Krsna as a fair-skinned God! Black, brown, white – all are God’s creations and they all are beautiful.

    Like

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