The Beauty and Irony of the Indian Culture all Wrapped in One Will Make you Laugh


by Alyssa John 

My sense of humor usually stems from racial stereotyping, so here are some of my thoughts on my lovely racial background (Singaporean/Indian). Enjoy and tell me your thoughts below in the comments!

Point 1: To have or not to have an arranged marriage?

Now, non-Indians, when you hear of arranged marriages, do you automatically imagine some random guy riding an elephant to another random girl’s house to marry her, not to mention, it is the first time they have ever met before?

I hope not…because things have changed (for the most part).

Arrange marriage used to sound and look like that. It was a tough process and it still can be in certain parts of the South Asian world, where women are paired with men they’ve never met in order to fulfill their family’s name and duties.

But I’m not referring to that type of arranged marriage because that is now heavily outdated and looked down upon.

In most Indians’ eyes, yes, getting an arranged marriage is literally having your mum or dad, or both, ask their family friends to choose a suitable life partner who  would be compatible with your lifestyle, status and education.

Doesn’t sound so bad, right? Well… you don’t exactly have the option to marry interracially, which kind of sucks considering HALFIE CHILDREN ARE THE FUTURE.

Arranged marriages are genuinely a great solution if you think you’re going to be forever alone, you know? Which is a thought that scares me daily.

However, I could go call my grandma and say “you got a boy ready for me to meet?” and she will most likely send my photo around and try to find me a husband one in a couple of days.

Obviously, I believe in the notion of love because I live in the 21st century and have seen countless romcoms, but in all seriousness, if you’re someone who fears being lonely like me, it’s really not a bad last resort!

Now, of course, even through the arranged marriage route, you have the option to meet the person you may forever be set up with, you still date him/her, you do the whole get-to-know-each-other-thing, and if it doesn’t work out, YOU MOVE ON TO THE NEXT ONE!

Sounds like a sweet deal, am I right? In an Anglo person’s perception…maybe not but, I think it’s actually quite practical if you do like the idea of being married but are too introverted to go out there and find someone to date and so on.

So yes, arranged marriages aren’t as ludicrous as they seem!

Point 2: What is the big deal about skin color?

Now, everyone knows how much I love cracking a joke about this topic because it can be SO controversial, and I love a bit of controversy.

Indians regard skin color as one of the most important things to maintain in their lives. By maintain, I mean stay fair (light-skinned), stay as fair as you can. It’s a very cultural aspect of being Indian, just as being tanned can be super important to white girls, to the point where they use artificial products to lighten the skin.

I laugh at how backwards this thinking is though. I have heard several times by countless people that “you’re never going to find someone to marry if you’re that dark.” As if my skin color is what draws people in, that’s what I have breasts for. JUST KIDDING!

But seriously, girls have so many gorgeous features (not talking about myself, generally) that skin color may almost be something to look over physically. I know people are attracted and not attracted to certain races, but the extent to how dark/light someone is should NOT affect how you’re perceived.

I always like to console my white friends who think they look “hotter” with a tan. I reply by saying, “girl, you are hot regardless; making your skin a shade darker or becoming a Oompa Loompa isn’t going to make too much of a difference to men.”

I really like natural aspects of women and men, such as skin color. Skin color is unique and something you have naturally, it changes when you tan outside. but it shouldn’t affect how you are perceived as a person.

Seriously, my family are 50 different shades of brown and I don’t hear anyone complaining.

None of the guys I’ve been with have ever said “oh, I can’t do this, you’re a bit too brown.”

On that note, (mind my language) screw you culture! We are all beautiful in our own way. I think it’s hilarious when people think skin color actually determines how attractive/unattractive you are in this day and age.

So yes, these are two observations of my Indian culture that make me (sort of cringe) and laugh at the thought of them.

alyssaMy name is Alyssa and I have lived in Australia for most of my life. I am a Singaporean-Indian aspiring teacher who loves quirky observations people notice about Indians!

By Brown Girl Magazine

Brown Girl Magazine was created by and for South Asian womxn who believe in the power of storytelling as a … Read more ›

17 Ayurvedic Beauty Brands on our Radar Right Now

Holistic beauty trends are more prevalent than ever — that makes ayurvedic beauty brands incredibly sought-after, as well. Do you find yourself asking what your beauty products are actually made of? A lot of us even resort to food products for a skincare routine such as honey for face wash.

The term “Ayurvedic Beauty” is getting more recognition outside the South Asian world as well.

Ayurvedic beauty is coined upon the term “Ayurveda,” which originated in Hindu culture as the basis of utilizing the five life forms — air, water, ether, fire, and earth — to heal the human body.

[Read Related: The Budget-Friendly Beauty Guide you Need This Spring Season]

Ayurvedic beauty brands focus on using herbs and natural ingredients to create their skincare range and consumers around the world are attracted to these natural products.

Scroll down to see some Ayurvedic beauty brands founded by South Asians.

Soma Ayurvedic

Is your skin feeling a little dry this winter? Nourishing your skin with body oil will lend it the right amount of moisture — Soma Ayurvedic’s jasmine body oil can do that trick! Shop the oil, and their full line of products, here.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by SOMA AYURVEDIC™ (@somaayurvedic)

Sama Tea

If you’re familiar with author and podcast Host, Jay Shetty, then you may have heard of his tea line, Sama Tea. Herbal teas provide many natural benefits. Has it been a stressful week? Try their lavender rose chamomile tea for some TLC. Check them out here.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Sama Tea (@samatea)

Sahajan Skincare

Know the Netflix show “Ginny & Georgia?” Loved the actress’ fresh-looking skin? Sahajan Skincare is behind that glow! They’re a must-try, featured in both Vogue and Elle India. See their full range of products here.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Sahajan (@sahajanskincare)

Shaz and Kiks

This unique company showcases its brand with an emphasis on ‘holistic.’ Whether it’s bad hair days or excessive shedding, not only do Shaz and Kiks provide the products to help but also break down the science behind the problem. Go on your very own shopping spree by clicking here!


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by SHAZ & KIKS (@shazandkiks)


Looking for accessible ayurvedic beauty products? Look no further! Ranavat is now in Sephora. With a beauty line that covers both hair and skin, there’s something here for everyone. See for yourself here.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by RANAVAT (@ranavat)

UMM Skincare

UMM Skincare is known for its brown sugar body scrub, made with natural ingredients, and Bakuchi oil known to improve signs of aging and hyperpigmentation. Try it for yourself by shopping here!


Give your skin the best by adding ZAILA to your daily skincare routine! Click here and start shopping!


This brand is all plant-powered, and we’re here for it — you should be too! Check out their full range of products here.

Inde Wild

Are you looking for brown skin-friendly sunscreen filled with nutrients? Look no further. Inde Wild has its very own SPF 50, with natural substances such as liquorice extract and cica, and it’s a mineral SPF suitable for all skin types. See what the brand is all about and shop it here.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by ind? wild (@indewild)

Mango People

I’m always in the market for brown girl-friendly lipsticks, and ones that are made of natural ingredients are a huge plus. Mango People does just this with their unique lipstick colors that suit all brown skin tones. Try them out here!

Kama Ayurveda

Need to swap out your shampoo for something better? Try Kama Ayurveda’s Ayurvedic Hair cleaner, infused with a variety of herbs and pulses with key ingredients like vetiver, tulsi, rose, moong beans, and shikakai. They have a variety of products to choose from so start with your hair and keep shopping for more here!


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Kama Ayurveda (@kamaayurveda)

Forest Essentials

According to Forest Essentials, night time is the best time for hydration. Check out their night cream, filled with nutrients to enrich your skin. You can shop their wide variety of products here.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by @forestessentials

Koppen Ayurveda

A brand made for modern living, their essentials are all worth a shot! Start shopping here!


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by KÖPPEN Ayurveda (@itskoppen)


Looking for a new face mask to try? AAVRANI has a variety of face masks and explains in detail when you should apply the mask during the week depending on your skin type. Take a look here!


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by AAVRANI ? (@aavrani)


Plant-based skincare, anyone? Delhicious has got everyone covered, so click here and fill your baskets!


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by delhicious (@delhicious_body)

Pratima Skincare

Just getting into skincare and don’t know where to start? PRATIMA skincare has starter sets, with basics, that every woman can use such as vitamin C serum, essential oils, and collagen creams. Grab yours now by shopping here!


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by PRATIMA Skincare (@pratimaskincare)

Fable & Mane

Struggling with hair care recently? Fable & Mane includes various hair oils in their collection that help grow and nourish your hair. Not only that, they have a scalp detox line as well — definitely worth checking out. See their full range of products here.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Fable & Mane (@fableandmane)

[Read Related: 10 Clean Beauty Products That’ll Have you Winning on Earth Day]

In a world that’s becoming more conscious of holistic living, embracing Ayurvedic beauty in your day-to-day is a step in the right direction, and these brands are here to help you get started.

By Hrishika Muthukrishnan

Raised in North Carolina, Hrishika Muthukrishnan spent 18 years thinking there wasn’t much to the suburbs before she discovered how … Read more ›