To all my independent ladies.

Are you beautiful?

That question has haunted you since forever.

The whole world is chasing after beauty, with so many definitions to that word, I wonder what are they even looking for?

Beauty is superficial. Beauty is lie. Beauty is expensive. It’s expensive because of what we’ve lost trying to seek it. Lives are spent trying to decode beauty. We’ve been so busy in our quest for beauty that we overlook life as it truly happens. We are devoid of the beauty of soul. The bold, carefree & untamed soul, as of the child we were once. Why are we so astray from meaning and lost in the false construct of beauty?

We grew up in a society that tells a woman that beauty is the most essential aspect of her femininity. Being a young girl, before anything, we wish to grow up to be beautiful. Because we are told that beauty helps you navigate easily through the world, it has its own perks, like free stuff. Now, who doesn’t like free stuff? Our appearances are chronically put on display to be judged and to have impressions drawn from it. We are constantly monitoring ourselves to put up a good show for everyone in the room to see, meanwhile everyone else in the room is busy doing the same.

Victoria’s secret angels, the cover page of Vogue, fashion TV. They’ve all been trying to make you feel less of a woman. Reinforcing impossible standards. Brainwashing you into measuring yourself with a mirror. You calculate how far your personal reality is from what the media perpetuates. Evaluating course of actions that need to be taken for you to get there. How many miles to cover? Shed those pounds or put on some?

They say, smart people know better. They know that the images on the billboards are nothing but a result of perfect lighting, Photoshop, magic potion and a sprinkle of fairy dust. Yet, it simply doesn’t matter. They still want to ape them. That’s okay, I guess. They’re only human and humans are stupid.

Let’s throw some light on the beauty commercials in India. Oh, you know exactly what I’m talking about.

In a brown country, any shade non-white of your skin tone is going to make you a failure at life. Black clouds shall hover over your head. You’ll lead a sad and miserable life.  Hence, unfair & lovely! This magical white paste that you apply externally on your skin will work its way down to your inherited chromosomes and make you 5 shades lighter and then you shall see the light of day. Now available at your nearest convenience store. Hurry!  Because without a fair skin, tumhari zindagi mein andhera kayam rahega!

Who holds this monopoly over defining beauty? Seeking their permissions to accept and love ourselves? It’s high time we stop trying to recreate beauty and we define it!

“There’s enough room in this world for beauty to be diverse”. Beauty comes in all shapes, sizes and colors.

There’s a fallacy in the term “make-up” itself, what is it trying to make up for?. Drop the act. Drop the Instagram filter. Dare to be yourself, don’t conform.  Let your hair down or make a messy bun. Dress like a lazy Sunday afternoon on a Friday night. Love and embrace every quirky and weird thing about yourself. Be unapologetically you. Wear your confidence, not Gucci and Prada. Wear a freaking banana leaf if that makes you comfortable. If anybody has a problem with that, look them in the eye and tell them that’s how you roll.

I’m not saying beauty is all pointless. Rather beauty is power. Beauty is persuasive. Not to persuade the world, but to persuade yourself. Let it give more power to you. Let beauty give you confidence to go out and conquer the world. Look the way you want, for yourself. You are beautiful, in and out.

Let me give you my personal definition of beauty. To me, beauty lies in boldness of choice. Beauty is having a broad mind. Beauty is passion. Beauty lies in taking someone broken and fixing them. Beauty is falling in love and holding on to it for a lifetime. Beauty lies in walking on lush green grass on a windy night. Beauty lies in listening to John Lennon on the terrace in a starry night. Beauty is infinite, just look inside you. Let it bleed out of you.

What is your definition of beauty? Break some rules of beauty and make new ones tonight.

 

 

 

 

 

Shrija Paul

Serial KFC eater. Stunt double for catwoman. Imprisoned for a 4 year span. Have a self crush. The roof is not my son, but I will raise it.

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