Fair and Lovely used to be our national cream once. Fair and lovely is passe. But the obsession with fairness isn’t. The names may have changed to brightening, depigmentation, skin enhancing but the desire remains the same. The desire, infact, has now taken a risky pharma turn. The same women who’d scoff at Fair and Lovely are resorting to peels, photofacials, laser treatments, and buying serums and masks laden with chemicals to repair sun induced damage, in other words, skin lightening. Isn’t this what was earlier called whitening. AKA Fair and Lovely, remember?! All this is happening concurrently while we, on social media and otherwise, cheer campaigns like those by NDTV, “Say No to Fairness Creams”.
The Fairness Tamasha Continues
In the past couple of years, the demand for whitening treatments like Photofacials and Vitamin C peel Facials has gone up manifold. These are available at the most upscale clinics as well as some salons. Peels basically dissolve dead skin cells, or remove the superficial layer of dead skin, leaving the complexion smoother and brighter. Chemical peeling isn’t just for your face. It can be used on just about any sun-damaged skin. A peel removes skin cells and reduces age spots, irregular coloring, rough skin, and freckles. Photofacials, Vitamin C peel Facials are priced anything in the range of Rs. 3000 to 5000. Photofacial is a process that delivers a bright burst of light that penetrates through the skin and is absorbed by dilated vessels and excessive pigmentation, without any damage to the skin. By utilizing specific light parameters the skin tone, texture and elasticity of the skin can be improved with no downtime. Vitamin C peel Facials are imbibed with properties of vitamin C and fruit acids; so they are beneficial to the skin. They also help remove pigmentation. The demand for these is high and the takers many. So has the demand for glutathione capsules, an anti-oxidant known to have skin lightening as a side-effect of its use.
Besides these treatments, there are zillions of serums, night creams, lotions and potions manufactured by the pharma companies with skin lightening ingredients. These are endorsed as well as prescribed by dermatologists. Again, the same women who look down upon Fair and Lovely are regular buyers and users of these. Agree, Fair and Lovely is not considered good because of certain harmful ingredients, but the bottomline is that the fairness keeda is still etched in our heads. We may give the treatments different names but the result desired is nothing but fairness.