With so much illusion going on in the world I have to take steps to help make to redefine beauty in America. The following actions I take work for me and I hope at least one, if not all, will work for you too.
1.) Being More than Happy with Who I Am!
I look in the mirror and I am so happy with what I see. I find things that I love about myself that others may not like. I appreciate my long muscular legs, high cheekbones, defined jawline, coco colored skin with gold and even undertones, tightly coiled natural hair, wide toothy grin, and my small button nose (that EVERYONE points out). I NEVER wear make-up (you’d be hard pressed to see me even rock lip balm). This, to me, is beautiful. While some people might find some of what I listed as “flaws” I see them as beautiful pieces of ancestry passed down to me through a perfect genetic combination.
It’s important for find things beautiful about you. What you may see as flaws others may actually envy. Don’t use the cover of magazines for your basis for what is beautiful. Turn to yourself and find what YOU think is beautiful.
Not only are physical characteristics important, but so are personality traits. I pride myself on being an even tempered nonjudgmental person. I know that I am a good person.
Being a good person who is honest with not only the world, but with themselves, helps rebel against society’s idea of beauty. In that growing you begin to feel more confident in whom you are as a person and your place in this life.
2.) I Vote with My Dollars
Voting with our dollars is the act of choosing to spend or save on products or services based on principle or ideology. For example, I like to see a lot of movies with an all women cast or movies with people of different colors and class. Hollywood didn’t produce a lot of Black, Asian, or Latin movies for a very long time because they didn’t feel as though the dollars were there for production. Therefore these cultures in American had to make their own way and show Hollywood Boulevard there is real money in these demographics. In the last five year we have seen an explosion of movies and network TV shows starring African Americans, Hispanic, and Asian Americans. When I see a beautiful Asian woman on a cover of a magazine, I purchase it. If Zoe Saldana is on the cover of Bazaar, I’m taking it home. Yes, I shop at Victoria’s Secret. Why? Because the brand LOVES women of all shapes, sizes, and colors. I mean one of their current top models is the beautiful Adrianna Lima who loves that fact that she’s Afro-Brazilian. Yes, I am spending money with a brand that believes in embracing all facets of beauty.
I suggest voting with your dollars too. That’s the only way these companies get it. What drives your passion? What do you believe in? Then decide appropriately how to spend your discretionary income on those products and services.
3.) Not Airbrushing Your Size Away
Lets’ admit it. Some photographers’ Photoshop to the next level! I mean it’s so bad that sometimes the person in the photo doesn’t even recognize themselves.
I also feel as though over photoshopping someone sends the wrong message. It tells the women that you weren’t pretty in the first place so I’m going to slim your waist here, thighs there, resize your jawline and make your skin about 10 shades lighter. By that time you look at your photo you are no longer seeing yourself. You are seeing another person’s interpretation of beauty, not your own.
At Wonderland Boudoir we only do light airbrushing. If you have a pimple, or course we are going to edit it out. That pimple is not part of that every day you. If you’re skin is blotchy… of course we are going to color correct it, but no, If you’re a size 22 I’m not going to make you a size two. I help women achieve their desired outcome by teaching them how to pose. I even go one step further and after our boudoir session curate the best straight out of camera pictures of you and let you see the pictures pre-color correction. You need to see that you are beautiful straight out of camera. Woman love that because they see they are just as beautiful, if not more, than those “women on the magazine covers.”
4.) Mentoring Young Women, Flaws are OK
Korin love the kids (you see what I did there, right? Okay, my 90s Hip Hop heads get it). Girls at an early age begin to depict why they aren’t as beautiful as the girl on the magazine cover. What she doesn’t know is that the girl on the magazine cover has been HEAVILY edited (if not had body augmentation). I love the current trend of young celebrities fighting back the magazines abuse of Photoshop. Let’s be honest bigger breast, smaller waist, and lighter skin it’s always the right formula for “beautiful”. These women are tired of selling a fantasy they can’t even keep up with. When abused, Photoshop can be a tool used to uphold unrealistic and unhealthy standards of beauty. As a world community, we need to teach our young girls that our flaws are characteristics that help us define and distinguish what makes us different and valuable. How do we expect our young women to love themselves when the magazines are portraying a different story? As Lady Gaga stated in her very public response to Glamour Magazine on over photoshopping her cover, “When the covers change, the culture changes.”
If you have a daughter teach her the value of individuality and why it’s important to know the difference between an illusion (abuse of Photoshop to sell magazines) and reality. If you don’t have a daughter volunteer at great organizations like Girls Inc or Headstart. Young ladies love seeing beautiful and confident women who look just like them. It helps install confidence and a sense of importance.
“Let us be that change that we want to see in this world.” -Ghandi
Question: Let me know in the comments below what steps are you taking (or will be taking) to redefine beauty for you.
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