My Skin Colour Didn’t Define Me: Bipasha Recounts Her Journey 

Bipasha welcomed the move by HUL, to drop the word ‘fair’ from its range of products. 

Published26 Jun 2020, 08:50 AM IST
Celebrities
2 min read

On Thursday, Hindustan Unilever announced it will drop the word ‘fair’ from its Fair & Lovely range of products in order to make its portfolio ‘more inclusive’. Appreciating the move, actor Bipasha Basu called it a ‘mammoth step from the brand’ while also recalling her journey of being called a ‘dusky beauty.’

Bipasha took to Instagram and shared her journey into films. She mentioned that ‘dusky’ was the adjective used to describe her even when she won the supermodel contest. “Then I went to New York and Paris to work as a model and I realised my skin colour was exotic there and I got more work and attention because of it,” she wrote.

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From the time I was growing up I heard this always,”Bonnie is darker than Soni.She is little dusky na?“Even though my mother is a dusky beauty and I look a lot like her.I never knew why that would be a discussion by distant relatives when I was a kid. Soon at 15/ 16 I started modelling and then I won the supermodel contest ... all newspapers read ... dusky girl from Kolkata is the winner.I wondered again why Dusky is my first adjective ??? Then I went to New York and Paris to work as a model and I realised my skin colour was exotic there and I got more work and attention because of it. Another discovery of mine:) Once I came back into India and film offers started... and finally I did my first film and from an absolute Ajnabee to Hindi film industry ...I suddenly was accepted and loved. But the adjective stayed which I started liking and loving by then.DUSKY girl wows the audiences in her debut film. In most of my articles for all the work I did,my duskiness seemed to be the main discussion.. it attributed to my sex appeal apparently.And sexy in Bollywood started getting accepted widely.I never really understood this... To me sexy is the personality not just the colour of your skin...why my skin colour only sets me apart from the conventional actresses at that time.But that’s the way it was.I didn’t really see much of difference but I guess people did.There was a strong mindset of Beauty and how an actress should look and behave.I was DIFFERENT as it was pointed out. Didn’t really stop me from being and doing all that I loved. Well you see I was confident and proud of who I was from childhood.My skin colour didn’t define me ... even though I love it and wouldn’t want it to be any different ever. Many skin care endorsements with loads of money was offered to me in the last 18 years ( some were very tempting)... but I stuck to my principle always. All this needs to stop. This wrong dream that we are selling ... that only fair is lovely and beautiful when the majority of the country is brown skinned. It’s a deep rooted stigma. It’s a mammoth step from the brand... and other brands should follow in the same footsteps soon🙏

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She further added that even when she did her first few Bollywood films, the discussion seemed to be around her duskiness. “I suddenly was accepted and loved. But the adjective stayed which I started liking and loving by then.DUSKY girl wows the audiences in her debut film. In most of my articles for all the work I did, my duskiness seemed to be the main discussion.. it attributed to my sex appeal apparently.”

“I was confident and proud of who I was from childhood. My skin colour didn’t define me ... even though I love it and wouldn’t want it to be any different ever. Many skin care endorsements with loads of money was offered to me in the last 18 years but I stuck to my principle always.”
Bipasha Basu

Actor-director Nandita Das, who has always fought against skin colour stigma, also mentioned that the move by HUL, though symbolic, is a step forward.

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