For a patriarchal society which oppresses women citing male chauvinism, a beauty brand Ponds coming forward to honor triumphant working women is an encouraging development. The women who not only excel at work but manage to juggle with demands of a household hailed as “the Miracle” reminded me of Sarah Jessica Parker starer romance comedy ‘I Don’t Know How She Does It’. But there was more than meets the eye
Launched in March 2014 with 10 ‘Miracle Mentors’, The Miracle journey delegated each of the 10 Miracle Mentors to select and present their 100 ‘Miracle Workers’ that were not only great career women, but also loving mothers, wives and daughters. Going through each photo/description on the Pond’s Facebook page was educational. I didn’t know even 10 of them. Since I didnt get to be a part of this, I asked fellow blogger Sadaf Zarar from the blog SiddySays a few questions about her experience being a part of Ponds Miracle Journey :
Q1 How did it feel being selected as a Miracle Worker in the Ponds campaign?
SZ:Honestly it didn’t hit me what the experience would be till I actually got there. While I was supremely flattered to have been nominated I thought my achievements were pretty dull in comparison to some of the other women selected. It was humbling and eye-opening at the same time (and a brilliant networking opportunity).
Q2 Do you think that these campaigns do an adequate job for the cause of womens rights/empowerment?
SZ: If only a campaign was enough to empower women. With the general mindset stuck somewhere in a century past it is of course going to take more than a campaign to empower women but I don’t think ponds was on a mission to empower women or fight for their rights, it was really an acknowledgement of the hard work put it. Honestly, given how little acknowledgement women get for their hard work, I’d say it was a decent start.
Q3How real are the notions of “Glass ceiling” ,workplace harassment and discouraging in-laws?
SZ: Questioning ‘how real’ the issues are speaks of how dispassionate the society is towards women. If we’re still questioning how real it is, then it just means we’re absolutely disconnected with the struggle a working woman has to undergo. These notions are ‘real’ enough to be keeping scores of intelligent women from achieving their true potential and the reason why were still a ‘developing’ country.
Q4:Knowing that most of Pakistani women do not live in an environment conducive to maintaining work-life balance. What do you suggest young women of today?
SZ: I think the young women don’t need suggestions or advice as much as the men in their lives and their families do. Keeping nearly half of your work force at home in the name of tradition, honour and values is just ludicrous.
Feminism and women’s empowerment are the buzzwords of our time, be it Emma Watson’s ‘he for she’ campaign, Malala’s Nobel win or the Chanel’s S/S 2015 fashion show. The pop culture makes it is easy to trivialize women by commenting on their superficial features and appearance. I must admit that as a fashion blogger I was also quite tempted to comment on the age inappropriateness of Samina Peerzada’s red lace saari. Or that Angie Marshall’s sheer cape+pageant dress combo made her look like a Broadway extra of a Disney spin-off. There were many others. But I resolve to restrain myself here.
Regardless of what it achieved, I wholly commend the brand team for choosing to go in this direction where they could have easily gone down then superficial-beauty perfection lane.
The Pond’s Miracle Journey Gala took place on 13th January at Mohatta Palace Karachi. Even though I couldn’t attend, the folks at Golin Harris were kind enough to send me a gorgeous basket of brand giveaways.