BABTAC supports 'The Ugly Side of Beauty'

BABTAC supports 'The Ugly Side of Beauty'

The Ugly Side of Beauty programme is a series of proactive workshops that have been designed to equip the hair & make-up, beauty, fashion and wedding industries respectively with tools and guidance in raising awareness and being vigilant of suspected victims of domestic violence, forced marriages, honour based violence and sexual exploitation and how they should report such concerns.

Jeena International are an organisation that is striving to help, inspire and educate towards a definitive change in society says Rani Bilkhu, Founder of Jeena. Jeena are a proactive charity which aims to pre-empt abuse and use creative methods to reach victims and potential victims. Thus the Ugly Side of Beauty programme is an example of such an initiative, Rani says. The concept of Ugly Side of Beauty derived from a conversation with a hair and make-up professional who wanted to volunteer with Jeena, she was describing how she may have come across a victim of a forced marriage.

BABTAC are supporting this innotiative and are beginning to work with Jeena International on the rising issue of forced marriage in the UK. We are urging members to read the list of indicators below that may alert a therapist to the possibility of a bride being forced to marry against her will:

  • A third party called to book the appointment for a wedding - usually the bride herself calls 
  • Booking was made a week before the wedding - bookings are made from 18 months-6 months before the wedding day/or if a make-up artist has cancelled due to a death/health reasons 
  • No trial/assessment make up appointment was made before the wedding day - 99% of brides want a trial as it’s their special day 
  • On the day the bride was never left alone - depending on the bride if she wants someone in the room 
  • The ambience of the house was not conducive to any wedding house - in any house irrespective of culture more so within the Asian household there is a lot of hustle and bustle, music, decorations etc.​​

Felicity Leahy, board member of BABTAC, was proud to attend the first Jeena International event at The Houses of Parliament on the 7th March. She commented:

This kind of violation of human rights is the Ugly side of humanity we are confronted with and must continue to stand up against. It is therefore important that industry professionals are vigilant by being aware of the signs that will enable them to become sensitive to these issues. BABTAC are looking at all possible ways to help raise the awareness amongst its members and industry professionals through articles in our Vitality magazine, social media, workshops and collaborating with other organisations. We will also be consulting with our CIBTAC schools and salons, on appropriate content design, to coincide with school curriculum, which will help students become more prepared once they enter the workforce. 


The Ugly Side of Beauty road show will be a series of 15 national workshops running from 07th March 2016 to International Women’s Day 2017.  They will be 3-hour proactive sessions specifically aimed at the hair & make-up, beauty, fashion and wedding industries. Together we aim to raise awareness of issues of domestic violence, forced marriages, sexual exploitation and radicalisation in communities within which these professionals operate.

The campaign will be launched throughout the year at the Scottish Parliament, the Welsh and Northern Irish Assemblies. In addition, Jeena will engage with beauty colleges and professional bodies to ensure this training and message are embedded in their curriculum. BABTAC will be supporting this initiative and supporting Jeena Internationsl throughout 2016. ​