Romila Koel wanted to put her best foot forward on her wedding day. Feet actually. So what did she do? Started going for regular pedicures and manicures a couple of months before her wedding.
All normal so far. Then 20 days before the wedding, the young bride-to-be took this... well... a step further. She stopped performing household chores for fear of chipping her nails. Even lifting a bucket was banned.
This is just one wedding, example of what brides do to shine on their wedding day. Simple things like weight loss are passe for these young brides, who have discovered new ways to look their best, no matter how obsessive or unhealthy they seem.
Dr Shikha Sharma, dietician, reveals that some women who want to lose weight before their wedding day go to the extent of living on laxatives for days before their wedding.
None of them care about the serious side effects.
"You could suffer from low blood pressure and dizziness. You could faint," she says, adding ruefully that "in India, it's feminine to faint and people take it as a sign of a coy nervous bride."
Besides losing weight, another premarital demand is for breast enlargement.
Gunjan Gaur, owner of a hair and skin clinic in south Delhi, says, "We see more women coming for treatment during the marriage months - February, April and December". Gaur was shocked at the reason for enhancement given by one client. "She said that her fiancee og1ed other girls' assets and she wanted his complete attention. Hideous," she says.