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Like most South Asian countries, Pakistan is obsessed with fair skin and equates it with beauty. Designer Zara Shahjahan shared a recent event highlighting the fascination and societal standards of beauty and acceptance.

Following her recent fashion shoot, models from the campaign received criticism and trolling on social media for not being fair-skinned.

“Let’s talk about these pictures,” she wrote, posting pictures of the models.



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A post shared by Zara Shahjahan (@zarashahjahan)


“I had a shoot in Turkey. My team left a day earlier and the day me and the model had to leave, Turkey announced 15 days of quarantine. We were left with no choice but to hire models from there.”

Sharing the obstacles due to the global pandemic, she shared how she had to find an alternative.

“I tried to find girls who look South Asian and finally found these two very stunning Mexican models who flew from LA for the campaign. We were very happy, the campaign look really beautiful and we launched, but what happened after is quite disturbing.”

She went on to highlight how the pictures started drawing a lot of hate and she found it extremely disturbing.

“‘They look like maids’ is one comment which disturbed me the most,” Zara stated.

“Are we these people? Why do we want the models to be white and sultry? Thank God for my loyal customers who know my brand and the collection was sold out but I don’t seem to get the irritation of a lot of women to these two pictures.”

This is not the first time dark skin has been considered inferior and used to demean people from a certain socioeconomic background.

Previously, actor Syra Yousuf also received negative remarks and trolling on her skin tone when she posted a photo of herself from a shoot.

“You look like our kaam wali maasi,” a user wrote on her picture to which Syra responded with grace. “To your maasi and my twin, I give my salaam,” she replied.