It took Michelangelo four years to paint the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. It’s renowned as one of Italy’s most treasured landmarks and brings in floods of tourists every single year.
Beautiful as the Sistine Chapel may be, there’s no denying that much of its beauty derives from its individuality. Like most landmarks, people are drawn to its culture and history, along with a view that couldn’t possibly be found anywhere else.
So, what if we had a Sistine Chapel everywhere? An exact replica? Not just in every country, but every city, every town? Sure, there would be undeniable added beauty in various places, but much of it would fail to be reproduced properly, some would caricature it completely. Few would be lucky enough to imitate it, but as flattering as that may be, the original chapel would soon lose much of its splendour – because we would simply have one everywhere.
The Modern “Metric” of Beauty
There’s an undeniable metric of “new beauty” in Western society. It’s copied in many places and is heavily fawned over by young women, yet it’s generally unappealing to men. You probably know the face I’m thinking about – the lip-filler, fake pixie-nose, lifted cat-eye, unnaturally drawn-eyebrowed woman, accompanied by a stiff, unmovable face. Much of this comes from a growing trend to attain “mixed” features, but unless acquired naturally, this falsified face is, more often than not, overtly artificial and quite unpleasant.
Unfortunately, many young women have grown to think this standard is normal, leading them to once desperate (but now common) measures to have the faces they see on their screens. Young, and even mature, women have been led to believe their lack of certain features makes them less beautiful, completely oblivious to how much substance their individuality actually gives them.
Women need to remember how much substance their individuality gives them.
The Western world is filled with women all wanting to look like the Kardashians, but much of the Kardashians’ beauty was built on their standard being different from the one we had seen in previous trends. The Kardashians once brought something new to the world, but now countless numbers of women want to duplicate them, forgetting that many of these trends will pass. “Kardashianism” will wear out one day too. You may have a trendy facial feature some years, and other times, wish to remove it completely. Nothing in this life is certain, even beauty standards, so we should learn to be content with what we were given.
Embracing Your Natural “Glow”
The most honest advice I can give you is this: most women look better in their natural state. Too many of us are eager to have “perfect” faces when the perfect face doesn’t exist at all. But, if we’re seeking anything close to perfection, we should work to find it in ourselves by emphasizing the features we like without desperately trying to conceal the ones we don’t.
Social media has also acted heavily as a visual echo chamber, much of it teaching women the “standard” of what makes them attractive. Television and media have always been this way too. When I was much younger, big lips, darker hair and eyes, and tanned skin weren’t considered “fashionable” among my peers, and I had all of these things. As a result, during my childhood, I always wanted to be glass-skinned and blonde, but the older I got, the “trendier” mixed features became, and many of my peers, including the ones I once envied, started altering their own appearances, now unsatisfied with the way they looked.
The smiliest and bubbliest ladies are always the prettiest because they’re in tune with their inner self.
In both instances, there was a failure to recognize the constant change in fashion, but the greater issue came from a lack of self-love and acceptance. There are many ways in which a woman can be attractive, but they don’t lay in artifice and constant alteration.
Aesthetics aside, the most essential part of looking beautiful comes from the ability to feel beautiful. The smiliest and bubbliest ladies are always the prettiest – they’re in tune with their inner self, to the point where it emanates through their outer self. They’re the women who don’t need to look like Barbies in order to feel beautiful.
Much of beauty culture today comes from pretty lies – a lot of what we see isn’t there. We’re surrounded by silicone breasts, enlarged rumps, filler-filled faces. So many of us are plagued by an ardent desire to create something we weren’t given. Countless numbers have fallen into the trap of this “cookie-cutter” craze, sculpting and painting their faces as if they were a chapel of their own, unaware that the most beautiful buildings were made to be left untouched.
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