It’s normal to hear girls say, ‘I wish I looked like… [insert hot girl’s name]’ whose looks are accomplished with a team of make-up artists, stylists, hairdressers and airbrushing. It’s an even stronger wish when the hot person is naturally hot.Dammit they’re pretty.
The strange thing about feeling as though you want to look like someone else, is that you realise that if you exchange your eyebrows for hers then a piece of you would disappear. Like a little piece of your identity. As much as you dislike aspects of your face – and oh how I understand the utter despair of feeling genetically cursed – the thing is that those aspects are what help you recognise you. Am I my mind? Am I this body? Or is it a combination of both that gives me my identity?
I have never really found supermodels attractive which baffles most people. It’s just that they’re supposed to be the pinnacle of beauty. They’re these people whose job is to simply be coat hangers who have been hyper sexed up.. and when viewing people this way, it is easy to become hyper-critical. It’s easy to not want anything less-than perfect when something ‘perfect’ is in front of you.
Contrastingly, when it comes to those I know in real life (and even the characters in television shows that I love, because they love me back I swear) this being hyper-critical evaporates. I don’t notice, don’t care about or actually find attractive your lopsided facial structure, or your crooked bottom teeth, or whatever it is you don’t like about yourself. Those aspects are just parts of the thing I like looking at: you. Having a beautiful heart honestly does make your appearance more lovely to those around you.
An excellent Ted talk video by model Cameron Russell where she shows pictures of herself modelling compared to candid, everyday photos of her highlights interesting aspect on what it’s like to model. Strangely, I found I’d rather steal the features of the ‘regular’ girl over the model girl, despite them being the exact same person. It’s not that the model image is ugly, it’s not that I’m taking some kind of noble, moral high-road by saying that I prefer the natural, it’s just that it is very rare for me to see beauty I covet in an advertisement or fashion shoot. It’s too unreal. Russell talks about how models are probably some of the most insecure women out there and judging from the way I personally regard their images, it’s no wonder.
I always think that if I’m going to attain perfection, then I’m going to need to smooth out all my features in the blonde haired / blue eyed dream. Yet when I come across images of blonde women, none of them are good enough. What is wrong with my perception?! Why aren’t these girls, with looks 10x those of mine, not eligible for my dream looks? Am I an awful human being or is there just no such thing as a ‘perfect dream face’?
If the blondes I saw in media were my friends then I would probably actually find them stunning. If they were my favourite television actors I would too. As nameless blonde-haired faces on my screen or in my magazine who I don’t have a connection to – nope.
And here’s the entirely crazy part: I find the features of people I like to be the most covetable, but could never actually wish for them to be mine because then that person would no longer have them. If I look like someone else, do their looks disappear? Could I do that to someone? Why am I worrying about something that is entirely impossible?!
What I really want isn’t someone else’s hair, it’s for my own hair to get longer and thicker. I don’t want someone else’s nose, I want my own to be cuter. I don’t want to transform into that hot girl in that picture – I want my face to transform into a prettier version of itself.
Maybe it’s time to ‘love the skin you’re in’. It’s hard if it isn’t what you deem beautiful, but since there will never be a chance for me to inhabit young Jennifer Aniston’s body, I may as well get used to my own. And you should to – because you’re the only you that exists.