I used to be very concerned with my appearance. I spent countless hours and dollars trying to look put together and “attractive”. The picture attached to this post is a snapshot of all the stuff I used to use on a regular basis to alter my appearance. My beauty regimen used to consist of a bunch of stuff to try to get rid of my acne, other stuff to hide what wouldn’t go away, stuff to remove that stuff and a whole mess of things working hard to tame my unruly, frizzy waves.
Like many women, I did this regimen every single day. Though no one had specifically told me my value was tied to my looks, I seemed to absorb that message simply by existing in our culture.
We likely all know how easy it is to get caught up in the notion that we are supposed to look a certain way. It is exhausting.
Many years ago I was given some of the best advice I’ve ever received.
I was invited to intentionally go out into the world without having put any effort into my appearance. I was told that one of two things would happen:
1. No one would notice or care
2. People would still regard me as acceptable
Can you guess what happened?
No one noticed or cared AND people still regarded me as acceptable. I was treated with courtesy and kindness or simply ignored by those who were caught thinking about their own lives. It was liberating!
This may seem like a simple or silly thing, but humans learn through experience not knowledge. Of course I knew intellectually that the world wouldn’t stop spinning just because my hair was a hot mess and my blemishes were uncovered, but there was still some fear inside of me. Going out and actually experiencing this information was a turning point for me.
It’s not like I threw all of my defrizzing products out or never wore makeup again, but it was the beginning of me accepting me just as I am. It was the first step on a long, wonderful journey of feeling beautiful in my own skin.
I now spend countless hours connecting with my true Self and others and have saved countless dollars as a result. My new beauty routine consists of little more than standard hygiene, light makeup and a touch of curl cream in my hair while it air dries. And you know what? I really love my natural look these days!
I will extend this invitation to you now, just as it was offered to me. If you struggle to accept your appearance, I invite you to intentionally go out into the world without putting any effort into your appearance and see what happens…
The best beauty regimen is self-acceptance and it looks good on everybody!