Dubai: In an era where airbrushing images to perfection has become an everyday practice, young women, in particular, can be left stressed and self-conscious about the way they look as they compare their appearance with what they are constantly exposed to, experts said.
From aspiring to have a narrower waist, thicker eyebrows and lashes, a slimmer nose to fuller lips, these beauty norms are constantly being reinforced in our visual culture. But two well-known Dubai-based beauty bloggers see airbrushing of images as a positive thing. The duo, who have made it to the news for their uncanny resemblances to Kim Kardashian and Kylie Jenner, have made it clear that there is no deliberate attempt on their part to look like the celebrities. They share their opinions with Gulf News.
UK-born sisters Sonia, and Fyza Ali, who have an international following of over 700,000 on Instagram, believe that when a girl is exposed to the perfection of airbrushed photos, it encourages her to adopt a healthier lifestyle and a good skin care routine that helps her confidence levels.
“I completely agree with airbrushing images because it motivates you to want to have that skin, to work on yourself,” says Fyza, 25, who is a trained make-up artist.
Her sister Sonia, 23, concurs. “Society should look at [the perfection pursuit] in a more positive way,” she says.
“When I see skincare advertisements and their model’s skin looking flawless — I know they are wearing make-up because we are in the industry — all I think is wow, I want to have skin like that,” says Sonia.
The sisters also believe there is nothing wrong with women being focused on physical appearance because self-care is important. “Once you are comfortable with the way you look, internally, you become much happier and better to people around you,” explains Fyza.
However, they say, the line can be crossed when girls reach a point of wanting plastic surgery at a young age.
The duo have denied previous accusations of having done surgeries to look like the Kardashians.
“Why don’t we look at social media as a positive influence? When I post a picture of my skin, I’m encouraging girls to drink water and exercise,” Fyza said. Sonia added, “We encourage the idea of buying and using make-up to beautify oneself rather than undergoing cosmetic surgery.”
Having said that, she also believes that “if there is someone out there insecure about their weight or shape of their nose, they should wait till the right age and get subtle changes done. It’s about doing what makes them feel comfortable.”
Question of responsibility
How seriously do they take their responsibility as social media influencers? “We are careful ... because of how young our audience is. We try to focus on promoting make-up because it can distract girls from wanting a cosmetic surgery. What make-up can do in altering the way you look is insane,” said Fyza. They also emphasise on good parenting as essential to prevent young girls from comparing themselves with others on social media.
“Everyone has a phase in life where they want to look a certain way, but they eventually get over it. Parents have a role to play in minding their children’s engagement with social media and giving them the right attention and advice. We grew up that way,” said Fyza.
“No matter what the situation is, positivity is key to [happiness] regardless of what’s happening around you. Knowing what’s good for your face and body frame is important,” Sonia said.
Fyza, having the last word, said: “Self-obsession is about improving myself to make myself happy. Copying someone else is more about insecurity and that’s where it crosses the line.”