Being comfortable in one’s skin is not the same for everyone as it is subjective in nature. For some, it comes naturally and for some, it needs some time and thought. And then the socioeconomic context of their living also sets some precedence under which one is supposed to feel about themselves. Dressing up is one of the most significant ways to reclaim and be comfortable in one’s skin. Diya Basu’s YouTube video “Born this way”, which was created during Pride 2020 earlier this year is a creative way to tell people that they can find comfort and acceptance in the way they choose to dress up.
Acceptance and validation is something that the Queer community has struggled with due to the archaic norms and problematic societal structures of gender and gender performances. The video talks about different ways to style our clothes for the pride parades (which can also be done for an everyday look). The most commendable aspect of the video is that it provides an affirmative validation to the viewers while talking about different ways of styling. It is further enhanced by the voiceover which is divided into five parts in accordance with the looks. The lyrical voiceover is about the challenges a person from the Queer community faces in lieu of their choices.
“They tagged my existence ,called it a mistake,
Little did they know that it will make me a lot more persistent.”
This verse from the poem highlights the love the queer community as a collective or as a sole individual wishes to achieve or has already achieved. Something that seems abnormal in accordance with the norm is the normal and natural for others. Instead of negating the society’s detrimental outlook, the voiceover looks at it as an opportunity to reaffirm their normal for themselves. The voiceover is not only a treat to the ears but it is also reassuring in nature. Whoever is listening to it while watching the video can be assured that they are the best versions of themselves and their normal does not have to align with societal norms.
The looks, Net X Glitter, Primary Colours, Designs, Pop X Monochrome and Rainbow X Wing. All the looks are extremely powerful as they make the people who are wearing them bring out their true self without any labels or tags. They tell the audience that this is the norm for them to be themselves and not what the society expects them to be. Another thing that is worthy of appreciation is the fact that the clothes used in the making of the video are extremely accessible and easy to find. For instance, the look for design is breathtaking and similar dresses can be found at various stores if not the exact same. The looks are very easy to carry and the styling is completely in sync with the voiceover. Be it colourful jumpsuit from the Rainbow X look or the extremely comfortable look from the Pop X Monochrome look, they are something that they wear with pride and love for themselves. The Net X Glitter is a beautiful amalgamation of colours and the styling is just phenomenal with the makeup and the skirt being the show stealers of the look.
“Today I bless you with all the pride that I take in myself.” This line from the voiceover talks about acceptance and self-love. Instead of questioning the society about the flak they get for being themselves, they reciprocate with love and hope that things will change for the better. This understanding of pride is something that everyone needs because self-validation is the most crucial part of being yourself. And one of the most accessible ways of discovering one’s comfort zone can be the way one dresses up and the video is a testament to the same.