Despite the media still weighing heavy on most of us, things are changing. At least, thanks to the internet, we now have the power to share important messages with many people too. This power has led to us learning and being inspired by some incredible people.
From viral videos to blog posts, Instagram posts or on Facebook, people are using their preferred media to squash stereotypes and promote a positive body image. People are promoting diversity like never before and proving to others out there that there is no one type of beauty. 18-year-old Aranya Johar is doing exactly this.
Unlike most people, however, Johar is using a not-so-popular medium to share her message. And yet, despite her medium being less popular than social media or blogs, Johar’s message is still being heard by many. This inspiring girl is using poetry to talk about real issues.
In this piece, Johar tackles the “rigid beauty standards” women and men are facing because of the media. Through the UnEarase poetry video posted online, Johar is inspiring the people of India where she hails from. But Johar’s words are inspiring others around the world too.
6. An ‘Ugly’ Skin Tone
In the video, Johar gets honest about her own struggles to reach certain standards of beauty. She says that she has been using “fairness creams” since she was nine years old. She talks about what it’s like to use face wash every day — feeling like it’s a “slap in the face” because her skin tone is often considered “ugly” in the media.
In the spoken word poetry video, the girl reveals that she is not the only one in her family who feels the pressure imposed by the media. Johar talks about a male member of her family who went on a juice diet. The male “starved himself” to try and attain the abs featured on magazine covers.
Johar insists that men are as pressured by the media as women are. She says: “We forget that beauty for men comes at a cost. I'd ask for a penny for your thoughts, but I heard being healthy is wealthy and both we've lost.”
The girl also talks about how we sometimes add fuel to these beauty standards by choosing to adhere to them. Johar points out that we sometimes even encourage others to adhere to these standards. Men do so too but they are more discreet about it.
But Johar is sick of “such unhealthy cycles.” She’s not here to bash people with fair skin but she is choosing to promote different forms of beauty. And in the process, she is encouraging others to find their own personal beauty.
What Johar has realized at the age of 18 is not something everyone comes to realize even as they grow older. This is to accept themselves as they are and find that which makes them beautiful. It’s no wonder then, that this girl is making news, as she reminds us all that “it's time we love all shapes and shades.”