Have you ever looked at yourself in the mirror and noticed that perhaps you did not have the look you wished to have? Do you dislike the shape of your nose, eyes, lips or even perhaps your uneven teeth? And when you see the breathtaking Catherine Zeta-Jones or the handsome Zac Efron, what speaks your mind?
Sometimes, when we are in the presence of a really good-looking person, we tend to undermine ourselves or feel less worthy. Why do we feel this way? I am still figuring things out.
Look, beauty and appearance are what matter most in this world — right after money and power — because if you are GOOD or even THE BEST in this category, you can have almost anything. Love life, confidence, admiration and let’s not forget access. You can even have a fan base despite not being a celebrity. Just look at Facebook profiles with terrific pictures. Be they pictures of their real faces or of a porn star flaunting skin, there will be more than 1,000 people listed as friends.
Personally, the public has never had any problems with my look. I am considered a cutesy (I have my moment of narcissism). However, there are a lot of times in my life when I feel “imperfect” when I look at myself in a mirror. Perhaps my cheeks are too chubby, my jaw-line is not strong enough, my nose is not sharp enough and so on.
Then, just a month ago, I watched several TV series on the matter for research. First, I was hit hard by interview with Geum Jan-di from the Korean TV drama, Boys before Flowers. He said, “I’m not good looking and because of my shoulders, now I can’t swim… I am poor, nor am I smart… What am I supposed to do?” It is one thing when you have “something” to compensate if you are not good looking. However, it is another problem altogether when you own nothing and still are not good looking. You will think that you are doomed for life.
The world is determined by looks. Ever since the discovery of cosmetics, photo models, celebrities, people craved special status, to be accepted and regarded highly because of their appearance. Those who look better will have a bigger share in society. Therefore money is spent at the hair salon, gym, on the latest fashion, beauty products and many more — all aims to furbish.
My next bit of research led me to a scene in the US TV series Desperate Housewives when Juanita Solis, age 6, was ashamed of herself and often derided by her classmates because she was nothing like her mother, Gabrielle Solis, a former top-tier catwalk model. Therefore, she secretly stole her mother’s cosmetics and wished to be more beautiful, obviously applying the cosmetics on her flabby face every time she saw the cover of Cosmo with her mother in it.
The battle of beauty does not stop there. It widens and creates a conundrum, moving from a personal issue and into a social predicament. If we have an alleged “decent” look, our chances of getting a job are higher than those who do not. If we have a so-called enticing appearance, our chances of surviving high school and being successful in love is more likely than those who do not. I do not know who was first to make up these rules, but this is real.
I am no expert about beauty, but I know what people seem to forget: Beauty does not last forever. Only few cases do. Therefore, beauty will not be able to stand-alone. There are many attributes we need to have and should be proud of having because they do last forever such as trust, friendship, bravery, compassion, a peaceful bearing, intelligence, fun, happiness — all of these will be more likely to last forever.
People think that looking good is a must-have thing, but to tell you the truth, it is not. In the end, we do not want people to just look at us; we want them to really see us.
At times, I think that no matter which genes you carry in your body or whether or not you are the child of a former Miss Universe, people will always have physical imperfections. If we focus on what we have and not on what we wish to have, we might be able to find some peace and also gratitude in loving our true selves.
There is a theory I came across some years ago about how looks do not really matter when it comes to everlasting love.
Good looks may attract faster and bring more people, but building good love and romance takes more than just good looks. Various kinds of chemical reactions take place. As couples continue to grow closer together, subconsciously, their minds trick them into loving something deeper than the physical veneers. They will somewhat be forced to love what the veneer later unmasked, which is the true color of their personalities. How do you think really old couples stay faithful and still love each other after decades of marriage when all they see everyday right after waking up are sagging skin and endless routes of wrinkles? You answer…
* “Meeskite” is a Yiddish English word meaning “ugly person”.
— Yoz Tanuwiria