Transcending Society's Beauty Standards

When I woke up yesterday, it was just like any ordinary day. I started the day by brushing my teeth, taking a shower, applying my usual moisturiser on my face, and combing my hair after getting ready in my fresh set of PJs and a decent shirt (to avoid getting judged during online classes, of course). I must admit, for the past year I’ve been investing close to no time at all on my planning my clothes or even wearing jeans. To be very honest, skin and hair care is also not something I’ve been practicing religiously. I think a part of it is because I’m very lazy and because I just don’t seem to have the time. 

Any free time that I get, I immerse myself in watching Netflix, talking to my family or just napping. After a year of not giving my skin much importance, it decided to take its revenge. And hence, yesterday when I looked at myself in the mirror, I didn’t like what I saw. I felt like there was a weird patch on my forehead. My skin was beginning to show its harsh side. The patch was small — so small that no one else could even tell there was something there. However, it annoyed and troubled me.

I’ve always been told by my friends and relatives that I’ve been blessed with nice, smooth and clear skin. I’ve never considered myself as someone who’s supremely good looking, and to be fair, neither have my people constantly told me that I am. However, what they constantly told me was how nice my skin was. This is exactly why I couldn’t bear this small patch that had appeared. I felt as though the one good thing about my face was being snatched from me.

I immediately mixed sandalwood and turmeric powder in rose water (a hack provided by my grandmother for cleansing your face) and applied this pack to my face. As it was drying, I was very bothered by the fact that I let something so silly affect me so deeply. When and why did I unconsciously succumb to this idea that I wouldn’t be beautiful enough if I had that small insignificant patch? Why was I conforming to the notion that unblemished skin is what makes one attractive? That’s when it struck me that it was probably my skin trying to show me that I had to give it some attention now and not this elaborate revenge plan that I thought it had hatched. It wasn’t trying to give me a scar for life! And even if it was giving me a scar, there was absolutely nothing to be ashamed of. Clear skin is beautiful, no doubt. But so is any other type of skin. We’re all beautiful in our own unique way. 

So, to everybody who does not like their face today, and is cursing their skin, I want to let you know that you’re not alone and that there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that gorgeous face of yours!

We don’t have to conform to what society expects of us. We don’t need someone else dictating how we should look, and how we shouldn’t. What we can do now is to unlearn what we already know about beauty standards. You are beautiful if you feel beautiful enough to take over the world. The only opinion that should matter to you is yours and yours alone. Just as Alessia Cara puts it in her song, “Scars to Your Beautiful”:

“But there's a hope that's waiting for you in the dark

You should know you're beautiful just the way you are

And you don't have to change a thing

The world could change its heart

No scars to your beautiful

We're stars and we're beautiful.”