It's a sham that 21st century doesn't judge a woman on the "crowning glory" she wears or her "physical standards".
When we talk about modernisation of women, it doesn't ideally deal with women bringing about changes in their lifestyle. Modernisation also involves the transformation of thinking that should essentially liberate a woman from being judged on her physical features and choices rather.
Apparently we have not yet reached a complete awakening of a person's consciousness towards how he views a woman's feature as a recent study concluded by Dove found that 71% Indians think short, colored and curly hair is less beautiful than long and straight hair and 87% Indians prefer women keep long hair (instead of short).
"In a world where everyone is experimenting with new looks, quirky hair color and head-turning hairstyles, there still exist pre-defined standards of what ‘beautiful hair’ looks like. According to a new study commissioned by Dove Hair, in collaboration with Hansa Research, reflects strong biases to various aspects of women’s hair. For the study, 2007 men and women between the age group of 18 to 55 years were enrolled in several tests to study biases towards hair and the results revealed are shocking," said Dove.
It's a dejected state of affairs to see that despite women making it big in different aspects of life, they are still pulled back by such archaic perceptions and "narrow standards," which "reinforce the stereotypes and biases that have an implication on the role and status of women." It's still needs consciousness that how "physical beauty" is primary to a woman's goals and accomplishments in life.
"The results further echo a stereotype mindset that is intrinsically unhealthy and weighs down the choices for Indian women. It is stressful for women that they are judged by prematurely greying hair or type of hair before they even enter the room. That’s exactly what the study reflects – a strong bias against curly hair where 81% Indians do not prefer it while 63% Indians think that women with premature greying should dye their hair," Dove concludes.
"As this research highlights, there is a need to change the mindset," said Harman Dhillon, Vice President- Hair Care, Hindustan Unilever.
How are we to progress as a society till the time we don't practise what we preach on women and their freedom of choices?