Busting The 'Gori' Myth

Kiran Khanijow , 05 Sep 2013
Fairness Endorsements
Fairness Endorsements

Would you like to be fashion forward? The true epitome of hotness? Love yourself. Your complexion. Your skin tone. Truly, madly, deeply. Love it. I know it’s tough to do when most of the Bollywood stars we love and admire endorse fairness products. When the internet, our families, and every other form of media says differently. The color of someone’s skin continues to be embedded in our Indian culture. It is an age old point of discussion. Being fair skinned is a matter of pride, no thanks to British colonialism. According to many, you can only be pretty if you are Gori.

Lakshmi Menon
Lakshmi Menon

Model Lakhshmi Menon didn’t fit into the modeling industry in India because she was considered too dark. I normally get asked by non-Indians why Bollywood actors are so light skinned compared to the rest of India. It’s weird that white people are obsessed with tanned skin, and Indians with the fair. I personally feel it’s a Snow White obsession that seems to have reached a new low. Men too have joined the fairness bandwagon and want to look ‘beautiful’. Fair and handsome is endorsed by Shah Rukh Khan. Deepika Padukone and Priyanka Chopra, who are naturally dusky are promoting fairness creams. Yet, what appalls me the most, probably like most of you is the clean and dry intimate wash that lightens a woman’s private parts! When I first saw the ad back in 2012, I was completely horrified. A fairer private part equals a happier life! A happier sex life! Ummm…

Shah Rukh Khan
Shah Rukh Khan

Kuddos to some stars like Ranbir Kapoor, Bipasha Basu and Abhay Deol who refuse to endorse such products. Are you aware of the potential damage fairness creams can cause? Experts say these creams are only 5-10% effective. Plus, they are completely unnatural and full of chemicals. Mercury, for one which damages the kidney and can make its way through the placenta during pregnancy. There are also chances of skin disease, acne growth and thinning of the skin. What about the psychological effect of young girls who are told they are only pretty and can only be successful if they are Gori? These creams are definitely not magic in bottles. It’s advisable to stay away from them.

Priyanka Chopra
Priyanka Chopra

Wouldn’t you rather prefer a healthy, flawless, blemish free skin? Beauty comes in all shades. It’s important to have a positive self image. Confidence doesn’t come from creams. It comes from education, a sense of accomplishment and an awesome personality. A clear skin is far better than a fair, yet damaged one. Don’t you think? So eat right, and let people accept you for your skin color or tell them to take a hike.

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