The question of beauty and the crisis of self-identity

The question of beauty and the crisis of self-identity

Beauty: “the quality of giving pleasure to the senses or to the mind,” that is how Oxford dictionary defines it.

The topic of beauty has always been perceived differently amongst people around the world, making it one of the controversial topics of our time.

The existing differences about the idea of beauty is mostly attributed by historical experience such as colonialism and slave trade as the community viewed beauty through features of a white woman. Then petite and light skinned was seen as getting closer to a white person, hence, beauty.

At some point self-hate was injected to black women as white people gave a side eye on their body shapes. For example, Sara Baartman of South African origin became the standard for black sexual and racial otherness.

A feature that some ladies go out of the way to attain unknowingly they already possess it.

Years after colonialism, Africans have continued drawing the line, not between the whites and the blacks but between black women of different shades, shapes and general physical appearance.

In 2017 the beautification industry in Sub-Saharan Africa was estimated to go up by 10% against the global market from €9.2 billion.

One trait of beauty is that sometimes you have to chase it, and that is where most ladies are enthralled, ending up losing their self-identity trying to catch up with society’s standards.

They say beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder, but currently the beholder is blind, just being dragged by the social constructs of beauty. Light skinned, with small waist, big bums, long legs, big eyes, and big boobs are the qualities set by the society.

“A combination of qualities, such as shape, colour, or form, that pleases the aesthetic senses, especially the sight,” Google’s definition of beauty.

Even the internet is evolving in its acceptance of what beauty really entails but our minds ain’t. Everyone is uniquely beautiful and if you don’t see beauty in them, trust me someone else does so stop telling people they are ugly or convincing others to see what you see.

We have been fed that there are universal standards of beauty and anything else is a lie. And because of this, many ladies fall into the pressure of trying to change a few things in their appearances to please the never satisfied society and fit into the criteria and some lose their identity in the process.

Skin bleach, face lift, breast implant, butt implant, slimming tea, yet the society will say ‘you are not natural,’ and you were more beautiful before, so why not accept yourself for who you are instead.

Your self-identity is made up of so many things including your appearance, your likes and dislikes, your personality and so much more. The sooner you learn to have confidence in who you are the better. If their words get into your head, no matter what you do you will still feel haunted by the ‘not good enough feeling’.

Don’t jump into changing anything in your body just for the pressure, and when you do stretch your arms wide open for praise and criticism as well.

In 2017, a lady from Iran Fatemeh Khishvand, was tantalized by Angelina Jolie’s beauty and underwent around 50 surgeries to look like her but the cosmetic surgery failed making her the talk of the social media.

Miss Tanzania 2006, Wema Sepetu gained weight and had a nice shape, social media buzz believed that she had gained so much weight and had to lose a few pounds.

She got this a lot and finally when she saw it fit she went through procedures and lost so much weight. Now the same internet is basically saying she is too thin and should add some weight.

Just as different people find yellow appealing and others hate it, it applies to human beings too. Your physical appearance is fine, just not everyone will accept that, and that is fine too as long as you believe and accept that too.

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