Mahira Khan and Ayesha Omar refuse to endorse skin whitening products
Ever since the #BlackLivesMatter movement has been gaining momentum worldwide following George Floyd’s murder, there has been talk regarding self-reflection and societal stereotypes in the South-Asian community.
One such conversation revolves around prejudice on the basis of skin colour, and the extent to which skin whitening products have been promoted in our cultures.
When BBC's Haroon Rashid took to Twitter to ask which Bollywood/Pakistani artist had never endorsed a fairness product, we were left scratching our heads.
Thankfully, Mahira Khan refreshed our memory.
"Been refusing ever since I was a VJ till now. Never endorsed a skin lightening product," she tweeted.
Ayesha Omar has also been declining for over w decade.
"Me!" she posted. "Been refusing offers to endorse various skin whitening products since 12 years. Have a very strong stance against it."
Momina Mustehsan added that she, too, never participated in such derogatory commercials, and dismissed any correlation of skin colour with beauty.
"Same here. Always turned down all fairness product endorsements," Momina said. "The amount of melanin in your skin has nothing to do with how beautiful you are. If we ALL responsibly refuse whitening endorsements, it might cause a shift in the market. We have the power to change the narrative."
And of course there’s Sanam Saeed as well.
However, it is understandable that while we appreciate these strong women for doing the right thing, we cannot be quick to punish and judge those who have since apologised for their ignorance, and are actively working to change and educate themselves.
For those of you who have acknowledged, and learning and growing, we see you. And for these powerful, women - thank you for doing the right thing.