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My image does not define my worth

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beauty

I have been told many times that I am not enough. I have been told that my natural hair is a distraction. I have been told that I would be more successful if I were skinnier. I have been teased for my big eyes, naturally full lips, and the list goes on. I have been told that my body is a problem.

A problem for no other reason than the fact that I am a 5’8, full figure. Obviously not your typical model. I am constantly seeing ads, reading comments, or watching programs that suggest I do not fit society’s standards of beauty.

From a young age, ideas of so-called perfection were planted like seeds into our sub-conscious mind, brainwashing us into thinking we need to alter ourselves drastically in order to fit the beauty standards.

A tree in winter without its leaves with thin, brittle, uncovered branches may look bare, exposed and perhaps “ugly” but why do we automatically associate something natural and stripped back as something obscene?

Those leaves and pretty flowers you see that bloom and flourish in the spring are like the mask the make-up and hair accessories that some young girls hide behind so they can be accepted as beautiful.

But the tree doesn’t always look that way when the harsh, cold conditions hit and its leaves fall to the ground, why is it not still considered beautiful? Is a girl without makeup still considered beautiful?

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When you turn on your TV or look in a magazine you will see an advertisement promoting cosmetic surgery. Or you might see a picture of a celebrity who looks borderline anorexic, camouflaged in fake tan, with what looks like balloons implanted on her chest and this is the epitome of “gorgeous.”

Is it just me or is that a little hard to swallow? Am I the only one who finds it laughable that the only way society will see you as attractive is if you change every aspect of your looks to suit their terms?

Girls and boys are always admitted to hospital for treatment of eating disorders because they want so much to be skinny. In this superficial, degrading society we live in, some young girls carry the weight of the world on their shoulders and have intense pressure to conform to the accepted standard of the way a woman should look.

Personally, I find the whole charade insulting and demeaning. Why should I starve myself to be as skinny as the girl next door? Did you ever stop and think about how often we are told to change our appearance?

Magazines constantly offer tips about how to lose weight in days, appear slimmer instantly, and hide our imperfections without actually knowing anything about us, much less our appearance.

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