By Srijony Das Last Updated:
Indian society has time and again suffered from a bias towards fair skin tone. Setting unjust standards of beauty, people are often spotted making disheartening distinctions towards darker skin tones, and they are somewhat pushed towards the margins. In fact, the world of showbiz has also witnessed some of these very kind of differences meted out against those with dark skin. Moreover, these actors are also made to lose out on prospective projects just because they do not fit into that perfect radiant colour of skin. Well then, take a look at these popular divas from the television world who after facing multiple rejections for their dusky skin tone emerged out gloriously.
Barkha Bisht rose to fame with her lead performance in the serial, Pyaar Ke Do Naam: Ek Radha Ek Shyaam. The actress enjoys a massive fan base courtesy of her drop-dead gorgeous looks and perfectly enviable physique. Nevertheless, in many instances during her career, the actress has faced multiple rejections from prosperous work opportunities, solely based on her dusky skin tone. But giving them a befitting response each time, she has come out stronger and charmed a thronging fan base with her very unconventional skin tone. In an interview with Bollywood Bubble, she once opened up on her struggling days where she was pointed out for her dark complexion. She recalled:
"I think one of the first things I faced after I became an actor was my colour, my complexion. Something as basic as this when I’m in front of the camera and DOP would be like makeup bright karo. And then the makeup guy would try to make me 3 shades fairer than I am and I hated that because I love my complexion. I did that a few times and then I am like I can’t do this. So, I’ve faced it and I would say, I mean I would talk to people and say listen you have cast me knowing this is what my complexion is. So don’t try to change it and make me a fairer person, just cast a fairer person there. So that’s one of the things I have faced.”
Parul Chauhan became a household name with her very debut portraying the character of a dusky girl in the serial, Sapna Babul Ka…Bidaai. Her character was widely received by the audience as it was perhaps the first time that a lead actress with a dark skin tone created such an impact with her acting skills. Sadly, she also has faced a fair share of rejections and criticism over her skin complexion. Despite it all, she went on to portray some of the most widely accepted characters, thereby winning every heart instantaneously. Moreover, she is proud of her complexion and carries it with confidence. Speaking about the same, she once mentioned:
"I am beautiful and I feel proud when people call me ‘dusky beauty’ or even ‘black beauty’. I don’t see any reason to be ashamed of this or hated being called so."
Nia Sharma has been commanding a massive crush among her audience due to her diva-like beauty. Being a social butterfly, the actress often drops stunning pictures of herself, which woo the hearts of her fans. The actress made her debut with the serial, Ek Hazaron Mein Meri Behna Hai which gave her widespread recognition. But the biggest hurdle she has ever faced in her career has been because of the diffidence towards her wheatish complexion, which has often led to frequent rejections for the actress. Nonetheless, she has thrived through it all and emerged as one of the most fashionable divas of Indian television. Moreover, despite frequent criticisms over her wheatish complexion, she has always kept her head high and has never accepted any change just to fit into a certain character. In her words:
"I never went to my doctor and said that I want to be fair. I have accepted it."
Hina Khan kickstarted her television journey with her impeccable performance in the hit serial, t serial, Yeh Rishta Kya Kehlata Hai. Gradually, her character of ‘Akshara’ went on to become a regular household name, thereby setting her base of immense stardom. While the actress has currently moved on in her career ladder and is enjoying massive success, she too once in her life faced a lot of critique for her skin tone, which included her being rejected for opportunities of work. However, her skills have vehemently shattered all such hindrances. She spoke about the struggles in her career she faced due to her unconventional dusky tone, that led to her missing out on an important project, since it required a fair actress. In her words:
"I can’t talk about the project, but I remember I could not crack a project because I didn’t look Kashmiri enough. I am Kashmiri and I can fluently speak the language but I didn’t get cast because my complexion is dusky and I am not extremely fair. That’s what the team and character demanded.”
Kratika rose to fame after successfully portraying the historical character of Rani Laxmibai in the serial, Jhansi Ki Rani. Receiving immense stardom, she went on to become a part of some other iconic shows like Punar Vivah, Kasam Tere Pyaar Ki among others. However, despite having commanded a successful acting career, it has not stopped her from getting a lot of backlash for her comparatively dark skin tone unlike the popularly liked fair lead heroines. But she gave a befitting response to it all with her versatile performances.
Ulka Gupta made her way through the hearts of the audience with her performance in the hit serial, Banni Chow Home Delivery. At a very young age, Ulka has attained unparalleled fame and stardom making her one of the most successful actresses of her generation. Sadly, time and again she has often been pointed out for her dusky complexion, something which many considered as a drawback for an actress in the mainstream profession.Once Ulka recalled the multiple rejections she had to face at work despite her talent in acting, since she was not as fair as others. In her words:
"I would go for auditions and I still remember they would have this board outside their casting agency that only fair and up-market kids needed. I would always ask and wonder just because I am not fair, I can't be an actor?"
Kashmera Shah made her leap from a successful television persona to being a notable film actress. Married to Krushna Abhishek, the actress has garnered a massive fan base for herself and is known for her unapologetic persona. But that has certainly not stopped her from being at the helm of trolling for her dark skin tone when compared to fairer actresses in her generation. Speaking up about the same, Kashmera had once recollected how since her childhood itself, she hated her darker complexion and wished to be as fair and white like her mom. Thereafte, she also highlighted how later in her life, makeup artists in various shows of hers would apply a thick-layer of makeup for her to look fair. In her words:
"I would put powder on my face and wanted to be fair and white like my mother. Earlier, the makeup men I worked with in films, they wanted to make me look fair on-screen by applying makeup."
Leading the headlines almost every other day, Sumbul Touqeer is enjoying immense support from her massive fanbase and is loved for her bubbly persona. After making her debut with the hit serial, Imlie, Sumbul created a stir with her performance in Bigg Boss 16. While her achievements at such a young age have inspired many, she has also been criticised severely for her dark skin tone. But it seems that it has been her complexion itself that has resulted in garnering massive stardom for her. She once recollected the stiff criticism she faced during her initial auditions where she was rejected for her dark skin. In her words:
"My initial days were very tough. I started as a child actor amd whenever I went for auditions, they only wanted fair-skinned actors. The requirement was always for fair child actors."
What do you think about these actresses with darker skin tones who proved that beauty is beyond the restrictions of complexion?