Brides for the day

It wasn’t a mass wedding; it was 81 girls from five CRS centres in Kolkata completing a practical test for their beautician course. Beautician training is offered as part of the women’s empowerment programme. During a year-long course, students learn a range of skills including skin care, make-up, waxing, manicure and pedicure, facial treatments and hair cutting. This year’s batch of students gathered on 16th May for their final evaluation. They had three hours to prepare a friend in bridal attire which included face make-up, sari, jewellery and hair styling. They also had an oral test about things they had learned in their course. Some students go on to set up small beautician parlours in their communities as a way to earn a living.