The dominance of media and its unbalanced emphasis on beauty has, unfortunately, made physical attractiveness an incredibly hot commodity. While beauty has always been valued more than it should be, after all it is mostly based on one’s genetic luck, the growth of access that we have to images, news, opinions, etc. have pushed society’s obsession with beauty to a whole new level. In this day and age, it’s more impossible than ever to claim that your appearance doesn’t matter – because it does.
That fact usually doesn’t bother me. Why? Well, one of the mantras of this blog, and an idea that Meg and I really believe in, is that beauty is a reflection of what is within: health, emotions, personality. We believe that what is inside is reflected on the outside and that if a person is healthy, happy, and at peace that they will be more beautiful. This is why we encourage healthy habits and positive lifestyles along with a well-matched concealer and tailored pants.
So, it usually doesn’t bother me because I think that striving for beauty encourages positive habits. Well, that and because I like all things beauty. However, starting this blog has made me think about the idea of beauty more and I came to this question:
Can beauty truly be a reflection of health and happiness and whatever else is inside when there is so much that we fake? Fake breasts, fake noses, fake hair color, fake eye color, fake eyelashes, even, to an extent with makeup and contouring, fake faces. At what point does all this fake completely debunk my (admittedly idealistic) concept of beauty? And, with all this pressure around for us to all be beautiful, can we blame anyone for a little fakery here and there? How much is too much?
It’s all about perspective. For example, to me plastic surgery is a big no no. I would never change the structure of my face or drag the skin of my face up to look younger. But what if I was a celebrity whose career hinges on looking beautiful, wouldn’t I do whatever it took to maintain my looks?
And what about the crap we have to put up with as Asian women? Whitening skin products overflow the makeup counters in Asia. Women walk around in long sleeves and with umbrellas on bright, sunny summer days. Beautiful black hair is dyed brown; deep, dark eyes are turned light. Some Asian women even get surgeries on their eyelids to make their eyes look larger and more deeply set. It’s a sad fact that the beauty ideals perpetuated by many Asian cultures are based on standards that are naturally not our lot in life.
Some people say that these Asian beauty ideals are the result of years of western dominance: light skin, colored eyes, etc. Others argue vehemently that these are the standards that Asian countries have always had – they argue that all beauty standards are incredibly hard to achieve and that if they weren’t, we wouldn’t consider them beautiful. Personally, I think it’s a combination of both.
Unfortunately, I can’t give you an answer to my question. How fake is too fake depends on you, on your life and your choices. And no one should judge (though we all, inevitably do). I would encourage us all to keep a healthy perspective upon beauty. It can be great and fun and exciting, God only knows I love to get dressed up and go out, but it’s also important to check myself.
It’s not going to kill me if my makeup doesn’t look good today. It’s not going to kill me if I eat a piece of cake. It’s not going to kill me if my lips aren’t perfectly symmetrical. It’s not going to kill me if I’m totally wearing the wrong shoes for my outfit.
In a world where there are so many standards thrust upon us, we need to remember that the only opinion that truly matters is our own. Don’t be too influenced by everything out there, focus on what’s inside, on how you feel and what you think. If you feel like you’re carrying more weight than you like, then lose it. If you like your bushy eyebrows, keep them bushy. As long as you’re happy and healthy that’s really all that matters.
Of course Jolie Asie is a beauty blog and we’re going to write about beauty every day. And we love it! We love makeup and fashion and skincare and celebrities. I’m sure you all do too! (otherwise you wouldn’t be reading this absurdly long and rambling post) I just hope we all keep it in perspective. Beauty should be fun, it should never hurt us. So, I hope you all enjoy our blog and can have fun with the information we put up here. We sure have fun writing! And remember that, at the end of the day, beauty should be about what makes you happy.