“Style is a way to say who you are, without having to speak” ~Rachel Zoe
Being born and brought up in a ‘semi-conservative’ culture of India, I used to have certain ideas about beauty, sensuousness and fashion. Generally we try to define the beauty of a woman by her facial features / flawlessness in figure / the dress and accessories she wears. Typically Indian women used to wear sarees and salwar-suits, until the concept of globalization spread its branches in our country, resulting into an evolution of fashion sense. Bollywood also played an important role in defining the latest style. Gradually women became more experimental in trying decent as well as exposing clothes, most often after being inspired by their favorite heroines on silver screen!
“Beauty is a manifestation of secret natural laws, which otherwise would have been hidden from us forever...” ~ J. Goethe
My idea of sensuousness first got a major twist the moment I landed in Egypt, after discovering the Conservatism in women wear there. No, don’t get me wrong. Egyptian ladies are utmost fashion conscious. Leading fashion brands like ‘Zara’, ‘Escada’ or ‘Pepe Jeans’ are successfully ruling their business in Cairo (Capital city of Egypt). But, there is an adorable hypothesis about ‘how to wear particular clothes’ = whatever they wear, they never forget to wear ‘carina’ under their dress; (Carina covers the main areas of femininity) so that only their face and palms remain exposed. Now, they wear deep cut clothes above carina and become irresistible defining a new dimension of fashion. The reason is simple: The more you show less is the curiosity of others. The whole image of enigma arrives only after you know how to aesthetically hide your assets.
Let me clarify this with two contemporary contrasting beauties of Mumbai Stardom...
1) Sunny Leone. The Ultimate Seductress:
Even before the release of her Bollywood debut ‘Jism 2’, Sunny managed to captivate the attention with her extremely luscious presence and porn star background. As per Google (India) report, she topped the list of actresses in Google search, prior to release of ‘Jism 2’. The movie was a box office success, since the budget was US$ 1.3 million whereas the box office was US$ 6.4 million (3 weeks domestic). Also the film got good response in overseas market. Not to mention that, credit went to Sunny almost entirely, as most people rushed to theater to see her skin show and sleazy scenes. However, she failed miserably while displaying her acting skills. As per review reports, be it a steamy sex sequence or a general movie scene, she emoted with only one kind of expression everywhere. Nevertheless, Sunny still enviably holds the position of temptress and till date, her pictures get maximum number of ‘Like’s + ‘Share’s + ‘Comment’s in any Facebook page regarding movies.
But, that’s not all...Temptations come and go. Glamour world is never short of attractive girls. At the end the saying of Pablo Picasso matters the most: “It is your work in life that is the ultimate seduction...”.
2) Vidya Balan: An Aura of Dignified Beauty:
Let me take you down the memory lane. Do you remember that magnificent first look of a Bengali woman ‘Lalita’ that sums up = a big red ‘bindi’ + red ‘sindoor’ + a few hair strands falling both sides of her forehead + a decent smile glowing up her bright eyes + wearing a ghoonghat and then suddenly turning her head towards the camera? That was our first memory with Vidya in her Bollywood Debut ‘Parineeta’. The movie was declared Hit (Budget: Rs. 25 crore and Box Office: Rs. 32.35 crore), giving Vidya an overnight fame for her immense acting potential and elegance. Eventually she won Filmfare Award for Best Female Debut in 2005 for the same film. Unfortunately the graph went down in the following years, for different reasons. One of them was her terrible fashion sense for which she was much criticized. Well, talent never goes in vain. After a few years, Vidya regained her position through ‘Bhool Bhulaiyaa’, ‘Paa’, ‘Ishqiya’, ‘No One Killed Jessica’ and obviously two of her most recent films like ‘The Dirty Picture’ and ‘Kahaani’.
Be it Cannes or in Lakme India Fashion Week, Vidya never stops to titillate our nerves by her exceptional choice of Sarees or Salwar-Suits. Draping a saree properly can set a distinguished style sense which fashion industry often tend to overlook. Don't forget, the same woman epitomized enviable voluptuousness in the role of Southern Sex Siren ‘Silk Smitha’ in ‘The Dirty Picture’. There lies the basic theme of sensuality with the capability of transforming one's self from lustiness to gracefulness, without much effort.
Windup: Once A. Stevenson said, “A beauty is a woman you notice. A charmer is one who notices you.” Think closely. What is more alluring? Sophistication or the lack of it! Though recently scientists discovered that the sense of beauty lies in the brain, not in the beholder's eyes, still won't you agree with Ninon de l’Enclos: “Beauty without grace is a hook without a bait.”
Well, it's a Question that answers itself.