Model and actor Amna Ilyas has called out Pakistan’s media industry for being unkind to people who do not match its beauty standards.
In an interview with BBC Urdu, the Baaji star shared the struggles she faced because of her dark complexion.
“Makeup artists applied a two-tone lighter foundation on me when I was doing shoots for lawn dresses,” she said.
The actor revealed that she was shocked when a director said: “Amna’s skin tone is not matching with the other people in the frame.”
Amna said she was taken aback by their comment, questioning how can two people’s skin tones match when they have different complexions.
She said the leading actors in the industry are all fair, and those who aren’t lighten their skin.
“I did an advertisement for a fairness cream, but I decided that is not who I am and I wasn’t comfortable doing it,” she said, adding that she used beauty creams in the past, but has now realized it wasn’t okay.
She said people have set beauty standards in society and only women with big eyes, long hair and fair skin are called pretty.
“Growing up, my aunts used to tell me that my complexion has become dark after going to school. They told me to put besan (gram flour) on my face,” she said, adding that they didn’t know the impact of saying that to a child.
“Having healthy skin is more important than being fair,” she added.