We tripped and stumbled when the males we admired all around us preferred the false image of perfection. It hurt when we first understood that the majority of men do not in fact see your heart of gold shining through your less than perfect exterior. More often than not, they choose the facade; the fake kind of beauty that comes only with meticulous care and wild intention. And so we tried, and failed, to twist and manipulate our bodies into our idealistic goals, burdened with our failure. But at the end of those long days and longer nights... when we took off all the make-up, and push up bras, and we saw ourselves in the reflection in the mirror, a little piece of our hearts broke; because deep down we knew something was wrong; something was wrong with the constant self-deprecation and insecurity.
And that is the moment we won; the moment we decided there was, in fact, something wrong with being compared to the lie of TV glamour, and we could never see that lie the same way again. When we realized we didn't want our mothers, sisters, or daughters to think this way, we started down the path of reconciliation between who we are and everything we always wanted to be. We began to teach our brothers that there is more to a woman than her ability to apply mascara and how willing she is to please. So, don't give up, don't give in. I know it's hard to stay strong when our image isn't everything we want it to be. But that is when we most need to hold fast. Find your beauty there- in your laugh lines because they're living & permanent proof that you were happy, and you'll be happy again. Look fondly on your messy hair, and remember how it felt to wake up looking this way as a child, not caring enough to comb it before cartoons and cereal; it didn't make you insecure when your brother laughed. That is confidence.
And when you do spend that time and effort, applying make-up and taming your wild hair, be proud of the put-together woman in the mirror. Gaze upon her face and know that you found your beauty elsewhere, and all the make-up and designer clothing in the world couldn't make you forget it. Let your lipstick be your war paint, not your mask.