An illustration depicting the unfair standards of beauty stereotypically held by South Asian cultures has sparked outrage online.
The drawing, which was shared on Facebook group Subtle Curry Traits, shows two women side-by-side serving as a comparison of what is and isn’t perceived as physically appealing.
The fairer-skinned woman on the left is labelled ‘beautiful’, while the other darker-skinned woman is branded ‘ugly’.
What’s more, it’s apparently from a children’s text book used in India.
“YO WHAT IN THE ACTUAL F***,” Facebook user Divya Narayanan wrote on Subtle Curry Traits when she shared the image.
Our thoughts precisely.
It didn’t take long for other members of the group to weigh in on the questionable picture, that reinforced the narrow-minded beauty ideal that’s reigned the cosmetics industry in countries like India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Pakistan for years on end.
“Holy s*** I remember seeing this in one of my childhood books. I also remember that for rich and poor, the rich lady was fair and the poor lady looked like the ‘ugly’ one,” one person wrote.
“That’s just so not okay on so many levels,” penned another.
One person pointed out that the woman on the left with lighter skin and hair wasn’t even representative of most South Asians.
“But blondie doesn’t even represent how the vast majority of us look!” they wrote.
“I guess we’re all ugly then,” said another.
The illustration also reminded people of the skin-lightening product ‘Fair and Lovely’ which is commonly marked in South Asian countries.
“I’m so tired of this fair and lovely bulls***. Your melanin is meant to protect you from UV damage,” wrote a Facebook user.
“It has zero to do with success, beauty, purity, or morality. For a nation that produces so many scientists and doctors, I cannot believe our society still buys into this garbage.”