Beauty is such a subjective term. It can mean something different to everyone on the planet. That’s one reason why subscribing to the ideals of beauty the media advocates can be so damaging. Those ideals are narrow, exclusive and largely unattainable for the majority of the population. Repeatedly bombarding people with the messages that the type of beauty they have isn’t valued sinks into a person’s subconscious and attacks their self esteem, even if they don’t realize it. This is especially true for women. The female of the species tends to internalize messages of self-worth that are reflective of societies’ views because of how women are biologically designed. That’s a big reason why companies target women for beauty products.
A solid vehicle for women to be encouraged to love themselves and raise their self-esteem is to find products on the market already tailored to them. Beyond just the sections in clothing stores for petite and plus-sized women, better options are becoming commonplace. Inclusive cosmetics companies are offering make-up that matches, caters to and flatters a much wider variety of skin tones than they did in years past. Companies like Lulalu are manufacturing beautiful foundation pieces that fit women with smaller chests instead of forcing those women to settle for the basic white training bra. Plus-sized fashion is moving beyond societal stereotypes, partially due to the rise of voluptuous fashion influencers.
So many women are choosing to adorn their bodies with tattoos these days. It doesn’t matter what others think, these women are putting permanent statements on their skin that speak of personal journeys, memories or even artistic expression. Other women have scars, and others have prosthetics. Many people treat women with tattoos, scars or prosthetics as less than desirable. This needs to change. Women are beautiful regardless of how their bodies are different from the societal ideal. Ladies, whether your body is different due to choices like tattoos or from illness or accident like scars or prosthetics, you need to know you are beautiful just as you are. Society needs to stop judging anyone with these differences and start to listen to their personal stories instead. You may find someone honoring a lost loved one with a tattoo, a cancer survivor under that scar or a wounded warrior mastering the use of that prosthetic.
One way to change societies’ attitude about beauty is to encourage women of all kinds to reach for their goals regardless of what field in which they choose to excel. For a variety of different women to shatter their glass ceilings gives our youth a plethora of role models from which to choose. Women bring different viewpoints and life experiences to the table which enables new solutions to various problems to be presented. Brainstorming from a different perspective may present answers to societies’ struggles that have so far eluded us.
Changing the way everyone sees women will filter out into empowering all people regardless of their difference from what society says is “ideal.”