“Internally, not much has changed for me in the past decade, but physically, I have seen a shift. Sometimes, I still have a strained relationship with my body, but I have become more accepting of myself ever since I became a mother. My perception of beauty, today, revolves around confidence, my behaviour towards others, and being kind to myself rather than subscribing to the so-called, industry-driven, standards of ‘perfection’. As you grow older, you realise that the ‘body issues’ you have won’t change, so you can either choose to accept yourself and be happy, or be miserable. The sooner you own your uniqueness, the more confident you become. Not everyone has the same skin type, lifestyle, or surroundings...find what works for you.”
KANIKA DEV, 31
“When I look in the mirror, I see an enthusiast...always eager to learn and improve myself. I have evolved as a person, over the years, but the learning process continues. I believe beauty comes from within and can’t be defined in terms of generalisations. Being ‘yourself’ makes you stand out, and diversity is what makes this world so beautiful. In the beginning of my career, I didn’t exactly fit in with the prevailing definition of beauty because of my freckles and my ‘mixed features’, which weren’t as common. But I turned those into my strengths, and I love my freckles the most, because they add character to my identity.”
RACHEL BAYROS, 36
“My perception of beauty has always been the same: a kind person is a beautiful person. But when I was younger, I struggled with an idea of beauty that was concocted by society, versus my own. This included everything that was perceived of me through another’s eyes. Today, I take pride in who I am and ‘own’ being in my skin, unapologetically. In fact, the very ideals of beauty, across the world, have become more holistic; there is more than what meets the eye. My mantra is this: beauty is not just about how you look, but also about how you make people feel.”
KANISHTHA DHANKAR, 32
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