Setting Your Beauty Standard in a world full of critique
“Is your girlfriend pregnant?”
Let me just set the record straight.
My stomach sits on my lap sometimes, okay? I’m sure some woman somewhere can relate.
In the midst of a pandemic.
In the midst of a battle for racial equality and against police brutality.
Someone thought to ask if I was pregnant.
While viewing my boyfriend’s Facebook Live video celebrating my birthday, they thought to inquire about my uterus.
Not ask how I was coping with what was going on in the world.
Not ask how have I been enjoying my birthday.
Not ask how my boyfriend was able to surprise me with a birthday video.
Shoot, not even ask him, as a black man, how he felt about what was happening in the world.
They wanted to inquire about my body.
As a woman, my body, my beauty, is always an option for conversation and inquiry.
“Is your girlfriend pregnant?”
This is why this blog was created. For this reason here.
No matter what is going on in the world. No matter what is happening in the news. No matter what caption is posted. No matter if they know the person or not. No matter if it’s her birthday.
Women’s beauty is always called into question. We are always questioned no matter what we do.
I can’t even be celebrated for my birthday without someone questioning what I look like or why I look the way I do.
That’s exhausting. Why do you think women spend so much time finding the right angle and the right picture? Picking out the perfect outfits and hairstyles? Trying to find looks to appease the public. Appease social media. There are so many thoughts that run through a woman’s mind on a day-to-day.
And what I’m not gon do is come up with a story explaining why my stomach looks a certain way to you because you know why? That’s my business.
And don’t you go out there explaining or downplaying anything you choose to wear or any way you choose to look because why?
That’s yo business. (If you don’t know, now you know I love me some Tab).
We spend so much time justifying why it’s okay for us to look the way we do. And explaining why we don’t look like how society wants us to.
Why can’t we look how WE want to look? And be happy with that. It’s enough stuff to worry about in life. Adulting is hard. Parenting is hard.
Simply existing, for some, is hard. But now I have to make sure that if I’m sitting in a chair, crying over heartfelt messages from my boyfriend and friends, that I sit with approved posture and suck my stomach in. In the comfort of my own home at that.
Yea, because no. My stomach, my size, my hair, my skin,my uterus, my blackness, my life. It’s my business! *in my best Tabitha Brown voice*
So here at Get Set With Spechel, we are going to work together to take back the beauty standard from society and recreate our own.
Here are some ways you can start, if you haven’t already, setting your own beauty standard.
Find your inner beauty
Beauty begins from within. You have to think it, consume it, and live it out. It is not only about your exterior but your inside has to be beautiful too. Because eventually what’s on the inside will radiate out to the exterior. Your character is way more important than your looks. I promise you!
Finding your inner beauty will have you walking with your head up to the sky and radiating confidence. When you find your inner beauty, no opinions will affect you. The beauty is rooted in you. You won’t go seeking answers and validation from others. Why? Because you will know the answer already. You are beautiful regardless of what the world says.
Dig deep. Find your inner beauty and the rest will come.
Accept yourself flaws and all
As you begin to find your inner beauty, you will also begin to accept those flaws that you may have been ashamed of or tried to hide.
Reminder: Baby girl, everyone is flawed. Don’t let the filters fool you. Accept it. Shoot, change the narrative. Maybe they aren’t “flaws” for you but instead imperfections or blemishes.
Whatever you choose to call them, acknowledge them. Practice self-awareness so that if and when someone tries to tear you down you have already built yourself up so high with awareness, acceptance, and humility that they can’t reach you.
Recite positive affirmations
So if you watched BET’s Being Mary Jane, then you probably remember that she spent quite a few episodes placing sticky notes with positive affirmations on her mirror.
I support this message. Waking up and reading positive messages every day can definitely add to the aesthetic of your morning routine. And the best part of the affirmations is that YOU will be responsible for what you read. You are the one leaving yourself these positive words. How amazing is it to be your own biggest fan.
Write down your goals. Write down your hopes. Write down your dreams. Write down how much you love yourself. Write it all. And throw some scriptures in there too.
Start here: I’m my own beauty standard.
Post the pic or the video
Social media continues to play a very large role in societal beauty standards. Some people are really out here basing their worth, their likeability, their character, off of social media likes and views. This is the reality of the world.
Don’t get caught up in that world.
If you want to post that pic or that video, do yourself a favor and do it. The people who genuinely like you will double-tap. The people who genuinely care will support and watch whatever you post. Don’t deny yourself of enjoying the things you would like to because you’re worried about how someone would perceive you or the way you look.
If your first instinct is to post the pic. Post the pic. Period.
Don’t seek validation.
Let me reiterate. If your first instinct is to post the pic. Post the pic.
If your first instinct is to wear that outfit or that hair style. Wear it. Wear what makes YOU happy.
Do yourself a favor and stop asking for opinions from others on your chosen outfit. What you like is not for everybody. You and someone else may not have the same taste or interests. And that is okay. The world is not black and white. We need differences. We need the extra splash of color. You are that splash of color!
You have to like YOU first. The likes and the cosigners, or the lack thereof, won’t and shouldn’t change how you feel about you. You can’t start liking yourself because all of sudden what you already knew was inside you has now been confirmed by everyone else. Cheer yourself on even if you are the only one clapping. Genuine people will follow, will compliment and support you. Your focus should always be liking you first! And whatever you do, make sure you are doing it for you and not anyone else. Don’t do it for the likes. Let your genuineness show and that is exactly what you will attract.
Women are always subjected to explaining and appealing to the world and meeting their beauty standards. Beauty comes in all shapes, sizes, colors, and hair textures.
What’s going on with you and your body does not have to be up for discussion!
If you like it sis, I love it. Do you and be happy and confident while doing it!