I Feel Beautiful When...

By: Kimberly M Gideon
I feel most beautiful when...
According to Webster's Dictionary, the word "Beauty" or "Beautiful"  is an adjective that means
  1. pleasing the senses or mind aesthetically.
Why have we been programmed by the media to define beauty as someone or something that is without flaws, or "perfect".  I believe this is why women (myself included) are so critical of ourselves. We are in difficult times, so now more than ever, I'm asking myself... I feel most beautiful when.... well, to be honest, like most women, I feel most beautiful when...
  • My hair and makeup look perfect.
  • When I see results of suppressing my appetite and exercising.
  • When my skinny jeans seem loose.
  • Selfies taken with filters.
  • After getting my nails done and a pedicure.
  • Dressing up to go to an event.
  • Retouched images of a photoshoot.
Why are these the only times we as women feel beautiful? None of us are perfect, or look perfect, yet we are held to the high standards of what is considered beautiful. We are told we have to "appear" perfect in false depictions of "touch ups", makeup, hair extensions, etc. Having been held to this high standard since the beginning of time has resulted in extreme insecurities in women. Most refusing to be filmed, photographed or to even take a selfie of our face and body in it's natural state, without filters (other than major motion picture films). This makes me wonder why we continue to think this way when the true definition of Beauty, as I have listed above is ANYTHING that is pleasing to the senses or the mind. This means that beauty can be anything that heightens our senses and pleases us, which has nothing to do with what we have been told beauty is (Tall, thin, long thick hair, flawless skin or perfectly athletic, etc.). We compare ourselves and minimize our beauty by falling short of these unrealistic images of women we only see in unnatural environments. Not realizing they have as many or more flaws than we do.
What if we only saw these women in their natural state? Would they be more relatable? Would we consider ourselves more beautiful if we saw the same flaws in them that we have? Would we be less critical and insecure of ourselves? Would we have more confidence? If we had more confidence would we use more of the potential we have? Would we have less fear to take risks if we were more confident in our appearance and more accepting of our bodies as they are-even after self care?
After lighting my Alexis Nickelle Co. candle and using AlexaRae's New Routine Sample Kit and full size Eye Cream, I felt more beautiful and relaxed than when I had covered my flaws or dressed up. Sacrificing time to pamper myself, meditate and spend time with creative women in our natural state to empower each other made me feel more beautiful and more alive than I have felt in a long time.
The next day I began to wonder if I was missing all of the moments when I felt alive and full of life in giving my mind and body self care. I never put much thought into this because I was always in my natural state and feeling full of life, but vulnerable. Thinking I couldn't leave the house or post a selfie on social media without a full face of makeup and slimming outfit that looked perfect. I am wondering why I'm feeling this way, when I did feel beautiful. Just not beautiful enough to publicize or post how I was feeling. I didn't like feeling this way and I knew I needed to spend the next 1/2 of my life changing this way of thinking.
I then realized how important self care and meditation is after the overwhelming weight off just- life in general had been lifted. I remembered what the true meaning of beauty was and I did feel beautiful in my natural state. At that point, I didn't care that I didn't have makeup on or that my curls had a mind of their own. I actually didn't want makeup on my face because my skin felt so renewed and revived.
I felt BEAUTIFUL. More beautiful than I had felt with a full perfect face of makeup and my best fitting skinny jeans. So I wondered why I had never wanted to be photographed in my natural state, or even leave the house without feeling like I had to put some makeup on or at the very least, fill in my eyebrows. As I got older into my mid 40's I realized I had spent my life living by these beauty standards that, like other women, had been programmed into our thinking of what being beautiful really is. Women have enough pressure to be a perfect wife, mother, sister, daughter, employee, friend, entrepreneur, etc., along with making it all look so easy to execute. We can no longer hold ourselves to these unrealistic standards of beauty that keep us from reaching our full potential and taking the risks that can bring great rewards.
Beauty is NOT perfection and it is NOT flawless. It is imperfect, flawed and naturally pleasing to each one of us individually.
So now having said all of that, if I were to ask myself again.
I feel most beautiful when...
  • I am using my favorite body scrub that smells great.
  • When my curly hair feels silky after a deep conditioning.
  • I am taking quiet time for my self care facial routine.
  • I've taken the time to pamper myself and meditate.
  • I am in my natural state.
  • I push myself to finish an exercise routine.
  • I am feeling my moisturized legs after shaving.
  • I am spending time with creative women.
  • I take a risk that yields a great reward or new partnership.
Ladies, let's remember to be more comfortable in our natural state, along with helping other women build confidence in taking charge of our lives and empowering one another through social media or our own personal social circles. I hope this helps someone feel a little more confident. I encourage you to make the time to pamper yourself with self care routines and meditation. Spend time with creative women in your natural state, without touch ups, makeup or uncomfortable (slimming) clothing. Just be your natural selves and you won't regret it. Don't ever forget what the true definition of beauty really is.
Remember..... "Be Your Own Beauty".
- Kimberly M. Gideon

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