Hi friends. I know it has been some time that I have posted any of my poetry. I had been rambling a lot in my thoughts about what I wanted to write and share with you all. So this time it’s not one of my old poem but just a ramble, a conversation that I generally have in my head when I am not talking aloud. This time I chose to ramble about one thing that I have been debating a lot about in my head.
This one deals with my interpretation & implications of ads. Ads mainly dealing with the cosmetic industries and how it affects our outlook about women leading to our reaction and actions. Ads sell a lot more than just products. To a large extend they sell values, images, the preconceived notion of love & sexuality.
But it is even more important to understand where the demand for these ads arises from. To understand this, we must look closely at one of the largest industry of our economy i.e. Cosmetic Industry.
The size of Indian Cosmetics Industry globally is $ 274 billion, while that of the Indian cosmetic industry is $ 4.6 billion. According to analysis and figures given by the Confederation of Indian Industries (CII), the total Indian beauty and cosmetic market size currently stands at US$950 million and showing growth between 15-20% per annum. The overall beauty and wellness market that includes beauty services stands at about US$2,680 million, according to CII estimates.(Ref: http://www.indianmirror.com/indian-industries/cosmetics.html)
I for one am a big fan of all the cosmetic mumbo jumbo that they sell in the market.If you ever come across my dressing table you will be amazed by the number of products(especially perfumes) that I have which I don’t even use. I think it’s like an addiction. I see something nice in the ad and I got to have it. Boy trust me it can cause havoc to your pocket and to the space in you cupboard!!
But moving back to the ideology that these ads sells to the society and their subtle,yet,strong message of the concept of beauty and the how should a women feel , look and think about themselves can be unnerving.
The industry has so ingeniously depicted a falsified examples of the perfect women who has a perfect skin , perfect nails , perfect hair , the perfect teeth that it is scary to think what it must be doing to the self-image of all those women who are not too high on self-confidence and also lack the so-called perfect everything!!
Perfection is objective, it is different for everybody. The danger with advertising an impossible idea as attainable is that it only makes many women feel like failures. So what do they do? They rush to the nearest cosmetic store and get what these ads promise will do for them.
I often look at the kind of ads that portray older women with wrinkles, a natural process for every human being. But especial emphasis on women’s anti-aging anti-wrinkle creams as if to imply for women – as she ages she is putrefying, her body clock is ticking and as her looks fades, apparently her purpose, her possibility of finding actual happiness or being anything is lost. On the other hand, have you ever noticed ads for older men?? They are depicted as enjoying a party and charming women, half their age!! And ironically that is what I hear and see happening in our society!!
There is no problem in these cosmetics, beauty lotions, anti-wrinkles creams, in fact some of them are actually very beneficial. But the fact that they play on people’s sentiments and provoke them on becoming better than the rest or just a little bit more like somebody else is what I object to and have problem with. We have forever professed that it is important to love yourself first, to accept who we are, and yet every turn of our head, every ad tells us to become somebody else.
Ofcourse, we should take care of our self and our basic hygiene is important.Even the most stupid person will understand that. But to sell the concepts, idea of a perfect beauty via photoshopped models and proclaim to the world that certain cream or products will do that magic is fraud, plain and simple. Thousands of youngsters watching these ads are inspired by these falsified images and try to ape them.
I am not trying to pin down any industry,but my point is that as a responsible society it becomes very important that our creative heads like media, advertisements house and different brands , should become more conscious about how they choose to sell their products. Creativity should be channelized in the right way to portray the true value of the products rather than depicting falsified images of things and imparting superficial values.