In India, where being fair is glorified and considered synonymous with being beautiful, if you are dark-skinned then definitely it has not been a cakewalk for you. We had asked our readers to share their experiences and challenges that they faced due to society’s obsession with lighter skin.
Read on these stories by three women who are dusky and lovely .
We spoke to Aparna Ajith, a South Indian from Kerala who has lived in Gujarat for the past 20 years of her life, and she revealed how she was always judged for her complexion and it ended up making her feel miserable.
“Kids used to compare me to the colour of a road, call me a crow or would mock at me saying “Kaali” implying black girl. I was upset with my looks. I used to be depressed most of the time and cursed myself for having a dark complexion. I felt like asking my mom at times if I was adopted. Probably because my whole family is fairer than me”.
“When I used to go to Kerala for my vacations, somebody or the other would pop up the question, “Chitra (my mom) is she your daughter? How come you are fair and she’s so dark? Something has to be done, else when she grows up she won’t get a good guy and blah blah blah!”
And I used to think, shut the heck up . I used to keep mum and listen to all of this. At some point, my mom felt that something needs to be done.
She got some home remedies from her relatives and asked me to apply it on my face. I tried every shit, trust me. I applied Chickpea flour, some Ayurvedic oil, different scrubs and what not. And what happened, my skin got even worse as I have extremely sensitive skin. I started getting acne all over my face. By this time I think I was in my 11th grade. Going to school with all those acne used to be terrible. This went on till 12th.
Then came graduation. The phase of life where you expect people to be mature and not judge you solely based on your complexion. Alas, hope was lost there too. Life was miserable again.”
She reveals how It took her a lot of time to love herself and accept the way she looks.
Anukriti Shrivastava recollects her challenges of being dark skinned and tells us, “I was three or four years old when my grandmother came to visit us. She Looked at me in a horrible way and said – “Dolly (my mom)is she really your daughter? Why is this girl so black.”
I was a child but I broke into tears.”
Recollecting her childhood ordeals, Anukriti reveals how she used to be bullied at school due to her complexion.
” I used to sit alone. No one wanted to be my friend. Other children barely talked to me. When I was in 2nd standard, our whole school was busy with the preparations for our annual function. I also wanted to take part in it. But my class teacher refused to take me in the dance act, as she wanted only good looking and cute kids.
All these incidents turned me into an introvert and made me under confident. I became a girl who was forced to think that she was ugly and would never get her prince charming.”
She says it was her brother Priyansh who always made her feel beautiful and instilled confidence within her.
She concludes by saying “Those who matter in my life don’t care about my skin colour. And those who care about my skin colour don’t matter in my life”
Amirtha Govindraj recalls her experience and says “I am from Tamil Nadu, where the majority are dark-skinned but still get ridiculed for being dark.”
I was tired of phrases like “If you had been a bit lighter, you would look amazing “.
“Then comes the school phase, where guys used to tease other guys with me to insult each other. That’s how the schooling went. Girls behaved more or less the same way. I was good at studies, extracurricular activities and even received the best student award. Yet I was teased for my skin complexion. Many guys used to avoid talking to me as they felt it would lower their standards.
Due to the way I was treated during my childhood, consciously or unconsciously I developed an inferiority complex.
Eventually, I got rid of the thought considering my dark skin as a curse and started to rejoice my complexion. Even now many don’t consider me beautiful just because of my complexion.”
She concludes by saying that,” Dark skin is not something to be ashamed of.“
Do you feel dark-skinned people are unattractive?
Isn’t it sad that these girls underestimated themselves because society made them feel ugly? They are beautiful in their way and its high time we stop equating fairness with beauty. Beauty comes from within. Being compassionate, respectful, forgiving and kind is what makes a person beautiful. Who cares whether you are white, black or for that matter a shocking pink!
Why is there so much of obsession with having fair skin? DROP IN YOUR COMMENTS