Social media has told us that we need to have perfect bodies and perfect faces- at whatever cost necessary. Our natural is not enough- we need plumper lips, lashes, breasts, and cheeks (all of ’em). We need fillers and filters – tight faces, devoid of pores or wrinkles, legs and hips devoid of cellulite or stretch marks. And perhaps most coveted, we need flat stomachs regardless of age or motherhood status.
With every filter and filler, I fear we’re losing ourselves.
I am an amateur women’s history fan and I know that *uncomfortable* beauty trends come and go. A favorite of mine is the era in which plucking one’s hairs to create the appearance of a high forehead was popular. I, for one, think I would have really thrived in a time where soft body rolls and high foreheads were signs of beauty- sigh. But I think that we live in a time where botox, fillers, and other cosmetic procedures are becoming less “accepted” and more “expected”.
Now, don’t get me wrong: I’m all for empowering women to do what makes them happy. So, ladies who choose to undergo cosmetic procedure, my beef isn’t with you. Your filled lips, perky boobs, or smooth foreheads look fantastic. You wear that confidence well. My beef is very much with a social media fueled world that tells women that nothing about us is good enough.
There is nothing wrong or even abnormal about acne, fine lines, thin lips, straight eyebrows, thin eyelashes, or pores. There is nothing wrong with cellulite, soft tummies, saggy breasts, or body hair. They are all a part of being a normal human. Yet, modern beauty says that there is. I fear there’s a fine line between accepting face and body “enhancements” and ceasing to accept ourselves, as is.
For myself, and more importantly, for my daughter, I will make a conscious effort to celebrate my normal. I can love myself, not despite my imperfections, but because of them. And I can teach the next generation to do the same.