Even Aishwarya Rai does not look like Aishwarya Rai when she gets up in the morning; she has to be made up to look like Aishwarya Rai. Simply stated, Aishwarya Rai that we see is not Aishwarya Rai !! In this age and era of make-believe, fashion is in and flaunting is done! In a world that is full of reconstruction, resurrection, transplantation, implantation and asset augmentation it is virtually impossible to tell the real from the unreal. Obsession with the visual appeal is on an overdrive; the global cosmetic industry is valued at USD 400 billion! Since the Ancient Greeks, humans have struggled with an overvaluation of aesthetic appeal.
In many tribes, in earlier times, women pinched their cheeks to give themselves rosy cheeks before the invention of blush. The ancient Romans considered wrinkles, freckles, skin flakes etc to be unfavorable, hence, to soften the wrinkles, they often used donkey milk!! Beauty is only skin deep, we often hear. What did they really want, go down to intestine? Adorable lungs and liver? Isn’t it good enough that the beauty is only skin deep? As one naturist revealed, an average human being uses nearly 38 chemicals, right from soap to shampoo, in a day, to accentuate the appearance.
Theorists and purists often go to extremes in calling for total shut down of cosmetic industries. Can one ever imagine what could happen if the multi-dollar cosmetic industry decided to shut shop one fine night? Few husbands would fail to recognize their own wives and the remaining husbands would not like to recognize their wives, the next morning! It is believed that most women have a long life, thanks to the camouflaging cosmetics that they use; they confuse the angels from heaven. Socrates, although a brilliant philosopher, was wrong when he said, “Beauty is a short-lived reign”. When Wizard Jeans, few years ago, produced its annual list of the 10 most beautiful women in the World, there were no young women on it. The world was astonished to see that Helen Mirren (64), Catherine Deneuve (66), and Sophia Loren (75), had all made the cut. In a popular plastic surgery technique, called lip grafting or fat recycling, fat cells are removed from one part of the body that is too large, such as buttocks, and injected into lips. Therefore, when people indulge in kissing the lips, they would actually be kissing the ass!! Obsession with beauty is age-old and a universal phenomenon, it would be unfair to single out India in this regard. There is this notion that the fairer you are, the easier it is. There is even a complete delusion that beauty is goodness. Empires have fallen, without leaving a trace, since their rulers fell ‘hook, line and sinker’ for someone they were infatuated with. Be it Ravana lusting for Sita or Prithviraj Chauhan’s intense infatuation for Jaichand’s daughter, Sanjogita or kidnapping of Helen of Sparta by Paris of Troy, they have all been grim reminders of death and destruction of formidable kingdoms brought about by rulers enamored by the beauty of the ladies they loved. Behind every successful man there is a woman and behind every shattered man there is the ‘other woman’. Cleopatra was known to soak the sails of her ship with strong perfume so as to ensure that the fragrance reached Marc Antony, her lover, even before she arrived!
Dale Favier, Portland based massage therapist, on what the people really look like, had once said, “ Most women have cellulite and men have silly buttocks: No one is as they appear in a magazine or a movie”.
As regards the beauty, it has certainly come a full circle: buttocks are now spelt as botox!!