Matrimonial advertisements abound in plenty asking for a fair bride. Somehow, being fair has become synonymous with virtue and talent instead of just being a natural state of skin. While some women accept their dark or not so fair skin and carry on with their lives, most women are always trying out some fairness cream or the other. Maybe, it is some national hangover from the colonial times!
The media only encourages this prejudice against dark and dusky looks by exploiting this soft point in women. No wonder, you find innumerable advertisements making fun of dark complexioned girls and women. It is a pity really, as many women accept this prejudice as natural and get demeaned further. So, we find immensely talented and duskily beautiful women wanting to get desperately fair making the fairness cream companies richer by the hour.
There are many health hazards that accompany the use of fairness cosmetics. The companies manufacturing the creams and lotions don’t warn that constant use of fairness creams could cause allergy and even scarring in some cases. Many women using fairness creams have complained of skin irritation and even discoloration caused by the fairness creams and lotions. Many of these cosmetics used by beauty salons and clinics for fairness treatments are not always safe. The FDA has banned the use of skin lightening and bleaching creams because the chemical, ‘hydroquinone’ could cause cancer. Mercury toxity is another health hazard caused by such fairness treatments.
There are women who would say, “You need to be in our shoes to know how we feel.” True, but does that mean you allow yourself to get humiliated by getting obsessed with a fair complexion. What is the use of having friends who accept you only for your skin color? Their friendship is only ‘color deep’ so to say. Secondly, why run after a mirage that only poses a danger to your health? Taking care of your skin (dusky or fair) is fine and advisable but what is inadvisable is the clamoring for fairness treatments that not only drain you of money, time, energy; they also drain you of the little confidence you possess, leaving you disillusioned.
Unfortunately, men too are beginning to fall into this ‘fairness trap.’ Fairness creams are now creeping into locker rooms. No man wants to be dark and handsome any more. All he wants is to look fair like the thousands of fairness-obsessed women. Isn’t it a pity?