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Jayati Godhawat

JWB Blogger

This Mumbai Teen Tells JWB Why She Is Styling The Underprivileged Kids

  • JWB Post
  •  November 22, 2016


Meet the 19-year-old social worker from Mumbai, who’s making a difference in society with style. 

Yes, she loves to dress-up and keeps her social media handles up-to-date with her pictures, statuses, etc., just like any other college student. However, she is also contributing towards making the world a better place for the underprivileged.

Before and After pics of the underprivileged girls who got the makeover

Natasha through her blog, Tailor-Made Teacher is breaking the stereotypes around beauty and fashion attached to the impoverished children. Her project, ‘Beauty Lies In The Eyes Of The Beholder‘ provides a fashion makeover to the underprivileged girls and boys so as to break out from the stigma. It brings forth “the reflection of how they see themselves; beautiful, strong, empowered, full of hope and confidence,” reads the explanation of her project.

JWB had a hearty conversation with the Tailor-Made Teacher where she also spoke about battling with depression. Here are some excerpts:

JWB: Your blog has a really interesting name, ‘Tailor-Made Teacher.’ What was the inspiration behind it?

Natasha: I have always felt that limiting yourself or tagging yourself is not a good option. When I started blogging, I knew I was writing from a POV of a social worker teacher, but I also knew there is a side of me that loves fashion, food and all other lifestyle related stuff. Now if I were to stick to either of them, I would be limiting myself, so that’s where “Tailor-Made” came into place. When you make your own rules, there are no limits!


JWB: Your project, ‘Beauty Lies in the Eyes of the Beholder’ is aimed at breaking the stigma around the underprivileged. How do you think the younger generation can contribute towards ending the stereotypes?

Natasha: The younger generation is already putting themselves out there through social media and breaking stereotypes in their own way. I think we have all done away with those age-old stigmas and are breaking limitations in our own different ways.

JWB:  What impact does the makeover have on the underprivileged kids? Share with us the most remarkable change you saw before and after the makeover?

Natasha: Whether you’re poor or rich, it doesn’t matter; everyone tends to have a positive self-image about themselves. But for the poor lot, only seldom do they get to show that to the rest of the world or do things to heighten it. I felt my project gave them a chance to feel good about themselves, to look at their own pictures and feel confident.

Project: Beauty Lies In The Eyes Of The Beholder 2.0

When I did the first makeover with just the girls and showed their pictures to their classmates and parents, they were all in pure disbelief. They couldn’t recognize the fact that they were the same girls they see in class and at home because they looked so gorgeous and confident in the pictures. One of the girls decided she wanted to seriously try her hand at modeling after all the response she got, and, that was an amazing moment for me.

JWB: A social worker is deemed to have an unglamorous image. You have changed that too. Was it challenging? 

Natasha: I wouldn’t say it was challenging, but yeah there are always people who are going to criticize you, no matter what you do. When my blog was spoken about on various platforms, some people commented things like, “You should do something better than playing makeup-makeup with them.” This just shows how limited our thinking still is. If any other normal teenager uploads pictures of themselves with makeup on, nobody is going to raise the same concerns as they did when the underprivileged kids did the same. Why? Just because they are poor, they should not “waste” time on feeling good about themselves? 


Also, Natasha shared how her grandmother’s death due to lung fibrosis affected her deeply and her parents realized that she needed professional help. And, it was through the help of the therapy that she took up volunteering work at an NGO Spark-A-Change.

JWB: In India, there’s a taboo around seeking the psychological help. How did your parents and you deal with it? What’s your message to the youth who do not talk about the issues they are facing?

Natasha Kothari

Natasha: It took a while for my parents and me both to understand that what I was going through was not just a “phase” but an issue that needed to be addressed; just like how a persistent headache or coughing would need. Honestly, I was not ashamed of the fact that I had to seek psychological help because that is not the kind of environment my parents created for me. But yes, it was tough: The whole process of dealing with the problem, recognizing and accepting it.  

My message to people who hesitate to address their issues would be: Learn to love yourself enough to know that both your mind and body need equal care and nurturing. If you are not afraid to make sure your body is always healthy then why can’t you do the same with your mind? Accepting that you are going through something might be hard, but once you manage to do it, it just gets easier. The more you suppress it the larger an impact it will have on you. So, don’t push yourself in a darker place; trust me I’ve been there and it’s a bad place to be in.

*claps* Now, this is the kind of a role model, we all need to follow!

JWB: Tell us about the most memorable makeover shoot.

Natasha:  All of them have been equally memorable for me. The whole process of getting ready, getting them to strike poses, having them look at their pictures and the reactions they give, ah, it was all amazing! 

JWB: How did poverty redefine the beauty for you?

Natasha: Poverty did not redefine the beauty for me; it just broadened its meaning. 

JWB: During donations, many people give away expired, torn, and unusable things to the underprivileged. What’s your advice as a stylist to the people who wish to donate so that the things they give can up the spirits of needy people?

Natasha:  For you, you might be doing away with the things you don’t need, but for them, they are actually looking forward to the help they receive from you. Be kind enough to make that help look meaningful.

P.S. To know more about her project and work, you can visit her blog, Tailor-MadeTeacher,

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