Sunday, November 28, 2010

The Pressure to be Pretty

" You don't have to be pretty. You don't owe prettiness to anyone. Not your boyfriend/spouse/partner, not to your co-worker, especially not to random men on the street. You don't owe pretty to your mother, you don't owe it to your children, you don't owe it to civilization in general. Prettiness is not a rent you pay for occupying a space marked FEMALE"

Just my luck discovering the above quote right when i was feeling like the pressure to always be "on" was upon me. I can honestly say i am a fickle person. I obsess about something until i exhaust it's appeal and then I'm done with it for a while, in worse case scenarios sometimes forever. However, there's one thing that has always been synonymous with me and that is being "pretty". I've always been loyal to making sure my hair above all is always done and that I'm fashionable. Now you may or may not agree that I'm a pretty girl, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but pretty in the sense that I'm always pleasing to look at. I'm always presentable! As impossible as that may be, I'm a slave to trying to proving it to be true. I wouldn't dare leave my house if i wasn't sure of myself. I have no qualms about declining on certain experiences if i don't have an outfit to suit the occasion. Even in the cases where the situation doesn't merit a specific attire. I've never been the "throw on some Juicy sweats to run to the corner store" typa girl. I don't do ponytails since one may get the impression that i'm slack about my appearance, and i can't have that. Me? You buggin! For the most part the effort i put into my appearance has always paid off and looking good have, after all, gotten me my current reputation of a "Pretty girl", some may even say "Diva" , "she's always so stylish". One would be happy with that right? Smh.

Having the "pretty" stamp of approval by all is about it's only reward, and it's easily revoked. It's a job, and it doesn't pay well . "Pretty" also doesn't play well with others. I've had to sit on the sidelines of my life in order to always remain primmed and proper. If i couldn't excercise and still be pretty id opt out. I was always "fashionably late" cause i wasn't going to head out on time if it meant i had to compromise me being "pretty". Never mind the fact that it was important to show up on time and show a friend or family member my support. Nope pretty outweighted whatever their cause was.

In some cases cases "pretty" can't co-exist wit others either. Once you've achived that ultimate acholade of the pretty girl and you decide you want to persue other interests those who knew you before make it hard for you to shed your old skin. They may doubt that your even capable of anything else. You may also doubt yourself. Doubt that you have more to offer other than being pleasant to look at. Any way i the author of the quote pointed out it's ok to be pretty but it should be one amongst many other facets that make you great! "In the hierarchy of importance "pretty" stands several rungs down from happy, is way below healthy, and if done as a penance, or an obligation, can be so far away from independent(who you really are within) that you may have to squint really hard to see it in the haze".

At the end of the day i don't want to only be remembered or revered for being pretty. There's more to me... and to you. One shouldn't be pressured to always be pretty because females are supposed to be. Don't feel bad if you take time away from "pretty" to pursue other interests.

More to life...

Disclaimer: The point of the post was not to draw attention to personal appearance or to paint a picture of myself to be perceived or judged a certain way. It is more for you to see where you stand on the topic and how you judge others that don't measure up to the standard of "Pretty".


MissHaneefa said...
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Prissy Mum said...

Great Post. I agree that we have to look inside ourselves and not put on a "pretty" face for others. After a while anything done for the sake of appearing a certain way becomes draining.

Ms.Larutan said...

I can completely relate to this post. In the past I felt like I couldn't leave the house without being "pretty". Now I'm different. I still value fashion and beauty but I do it for myself when I want to. If I wake up and am not feeling like "getting ready", I don't. No longer do I let something so superficial outweigh the important things in life. Great Post.

Gabrielle said...

Ok .... I soooo don't relate to the need to be put together at all times, but I admit to having judged or commenting negatively on women who don't measure up to what society deems the "basic" standard of pretty, which is actually A LOT to do sometimes.

Honestly though, my comments and frustration stem from the fact that I just don't think it takes that much work and I've told you this several times that I would NEVER have guessed that you spend a lot of time into getting pretty because you always look so effortlessly put together and ... um ... PRETTY! LOL.

Just don't obsess about being pretty but definitely keep doing what you're doing because for me its inspiring, lol.
A lot of women AND men just don't care anymore and that is terrible IMHO.
Girl, I threw those crazy tights from yesterday out last night as soon as I walked in the door!
I am so wearing a dress, makeup, etc today. And I feel great and it didn't take me a long time.
I just feel less self conscious, less annoyed and that's what I think women should strive for. Be pretty on your own terms and not for others.

I am all for people looking pretty, I just don't like the stress and sometimes unnecessary expectations set upon women to be pretty AT ALL TIMES. Its crazy!

If I want to wear flats with my super fancy dress so I can save my ankles, knees, and back for future, and dance all night don't look me up and down and say what is she doing? That's not right, that ain't pretty ...
Cause for me IT IS!
Thanks for sharing.

travelwithjen said...

I really like that quote!!

AthenouKa said...

That is SO true!
Lovely post and perspective too :)
I really like your blog and i'm glad i fould it and following you!
I'd love it if you consider following me back too!

♥Nikki Ms.Healthy KISSES♥ said...

Great post! Its funny because even though I love "feeling pretty" and having others feel the same about me, I rarely go the extra mile. I've never been big on fashion and make-up and I've been called out on it more than once! I like it but don't love it... I'm a hippie at heart, lol.

ABIGAIL NY said...

Society is very judgmental and puts a lot of pressure on the physical!

silvia Navarro said...

love this pictures!!!!jeje
great blog!!!

Licklemslady said...

@ Nikki Ms. Healthy Kisses...i swear your flower power shines through all!!! lol

Zizzi'sCloset said...

Love the blog!! Very true, I like your perspective on this, it's quite refreshing to read. That quote is crazy great, I had to get my notebook out and scribble it down!! Look forward to reading more from you xx

♥ StylisHedForeVer said...

Okay, this was a good read girl. i'm loving your blog big time!

Licklemslady said...

@ oh wow! Thank you guys for taking the time to actually reading!!!! It’s greatly appreciated you have no idea!

Carmela said...

Amen! Great read...there's so much I can say on this topic of "pretty", but I think you hit the mark beautifully.