17 May, 2021

So What If You Aren’t Shahrukh, You Can Still Be An Ass

You may win the tactical fairness battle but consider the long-term costs involved—a life-long cosmetic prison, irreversible health damage

Illustration by Ashish Bagchi
So What If You Aren’t Shahrukh, You Can Still Be An Ass

So how do people who become three shades lighter with the help of whitening creams feel about life? Do they become more successful, happier, non-stressed, more capable of handling tension or tragedy? Do they laugh more, earn more or have better sex? “Kaisa lag raha hai?”—that silly, stock TV reporter’s question—might actually yield far-reaching insights if asked of people who’ve risked mercury poisoning, skin-thinning, dermatological allergies and threats to the nervous system (all possible side-effects, researchers say, of the use of fairness creams) in the pursuit of fairness.

No survey has ever been done anywhere in the world to discover what fairness in four weeks achieves, apart from itself—lightness of being, emotional fulfilment, stable and healthy relationships or professional success? The randomly associated benefits of whitening creams dramatised in fairness lotion commercials—a good groom, a better job, confidence, beauty awards, mind and body rejuvenation—are mere...

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