Who Said Brown Girls Can’t Shine?

Who gave you the authority
To define beauty
By a single body type
And skin colour.
The binary itself is confused
Europeans attending suntan appointments
While minorities tend to lather themselves with sun lotion
Can’t risk getting darker,
I wouldn’t be considered fair and lovely
Is the mindset.
I’m the complexion of fragrant tea
That all the aunties enjoy at their weekly gossip sessions.
Who said brown girls can’t shine?
Decorated in gold and bright colours
A meaning is attached
Yet it becomes overlooked
Culture ignored
At a glance perhaps mistaken
For cheap accessories
The Bindi
One item that held controversy this summer
Is this gori wearing a bindi again?
Understand the history
The Indian culture
Failing to do so
Only contributes to the cycle of exoticization
Engage, reflect and respect cultures
Be curious and do research
One meaning of the sacred Bindi is
It relates to the Ajna chakra
A site of wisdom and power
Warding off the evil spirits
Deepening the connection with the universe
Beauty is everywhere
Respect the differences.

Freedom and justice for all a lived experience for some, an empty ideology for others. Why must one race be superior to another, it’s ironic as we all stem from the same branch. The division of humanity into certain categories doesn’t benefit the public, it only helps to push hidden agendas of those in power. We live in a broken system fuelled by hate, negativity and stereotypes, don’t you wonder the results of spreading love and kindness with one another? The endless possibilities.

When it comes to beauty we’re taught an ideal we must strive to obtain, usually, the thin white middle classed woman with no impurities, however, the reality is postproduction their image has been altered, airbrushed, and edited. The physical qualities we possess are what make us beautiful. The freckles, one-sided dimples, stretch marks, and much more. Recently on Instagram, I saw an image of a before and after from a makeup artist (MUA), the woman was of South Asian descent, she was unrecognisable in the final result as her complexion changed to an unnatural lighter shade. It’s honestly heartbreaking seeing makeup artists (MUA), marketing teams, and companies encouraging this beauty ideal. Many young (impressional) girls grow up seeing themselves as ugly because the images they see on social media, television and in popular culture do not relate to them.

What an industry couldn’t do (or wouldn’t do) when it came to the issue of diversity and unification, Rihanna (Fenty Beauty) and Beyoncé (Ivy Park) managed to execute with merely one campaign. They catered for those overlooked, labelled as irrelevant or different to the status quo, reaching a wider demographic in the process. These two women are validating the statement You Are Enough even further by celebrating diversity. Be proud to showcase your authentic self in its entirety. We all feel shy or nervous, but go beyond these emotions, step outside your comfort zone, you never know what’s waiting for you on the other side.

I have a voice and opinion
Yet they muted me as I don’t fit their ideal
I speak for my people
Because if I don’t who will?
I’m a voice for the voiceless
Not worrying about the opinions of others
Everyone deserves to be heard.
Let me be the medium to discuss your story
There’s a learning experience to be had
New perspective to be gained
And exposure to delicate topics.

What are your views on Indian culture?

Until next time, stay blessed and classy,SaveSave


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