beauty

All posts tagged beauty

Stereotypes and Beauty Standards for Girls

Published April 12, 2018 by Angela

I cannot even believe I am typing this post, but I had an experience on social media yesterday that completely baffled, shocked, and angered me. A bit extreme of a reaction? Probably; but I’ll blame it on being in pain, lack of sleep, and a bigger lack of patience.

body image meme

What happened? I posted on FB about someone asking me what I had learned from my 11 weeks off from work, due to breaking my ankle, and all the time I spent trapped in my house. My response? I learned to ALWAYS shave my legs, even if I’ve been single for a year, and it is the middle of January in Michigan.

First, my 64 year old aunt said she could not believe ANY woman or girl would NOT shave their legs every, single, day, and that she has her whole life, and always will. A couple other friends piped in that they too shave their legs every single day. This pissed me off because 1) If I don’t want to shave my legs, I’m not shaving my legs, 2) I suddenly felt like the teen wolf who was some kind of freak because I don’t shave my legs daily, 3) I was being judged by people who will never in their entire lives see my bare legs, and it affected them in no way whatsoever, 4) as a mother to FOUR daughters, the fact that any single one of them may feel they have to shave their legs every day because society thinks so really, really ticked me off.

I was not implying that I had not shaved my legs for a whole damn year, I was just stating that when a handsome 40-something Surgeon comes into the ER to look at your broken ankle, no matter how much pain you are in, you will regret not shaving your legs that day. You know, like your Mother always telling you…”Make sure you have clean underwear on in case if you get in an accident!” 😊

I’ve got bigger things to worry about then the hair on my legs, and the fact that my peers were so strongly opiniated on this completely floored me. Okay; I’ll stop bitching now, and move on to bigger and more important things. As a side note, I let it go on FB and did not say exactly what I think, in order to keep the peace. I’m usually pretty good at throwing some shade and making it seem sweet as honey, but I just let this one go 😊 I could have swore it was 2018…..

Are there things like this that bother you? What do you feel has too much importance placed on it in society today that keeps the stereotypes going?

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Did I Almost Let Cinderella Get Away With This?

Published January 3, 2014 by Angela

As I am reading, and reviewing a book for my blog http://booksandopinions.com, I am seeing how the information I am putting out there is really suited in many ways for this blog as well. So I am going to switch it up a bit, but here is the gist of it.

I am reading Cinderella Ate My Daughter, by Peggy Orenstein. It was a Christmas present from my 21 year old daughter. The premise of it is basically how companies continue to market to girls at younger and younger ages, creating the word  ‘tweens as a demographic group that did not even exist two decades ago. As a mother of 4 daughters, I can see snippets of myself all over this book.

I recently just finished reading a section that went into great detail the author’s experience at child beauty pageants. I do not watch Toddlers and Tiaras or any other reality shows about children’s beauty pageants, but I have the general idea of what is going on there. All the Mom’s insist that their daughters want to do these pageants. As soon as they want to quit we are done. This is good for them. etc, etc.

 

Now I am not bashing these beauty pageants or the parents who encourage their daughters to participate. It strictly brought to mind the 9 months my youngest daughter spent doing Irish Dancing. Keep in mind that no matter how big the award you win for Irish Dancing is, there is never (NEVER) any money prizes involved. You get trophys, medals, and ribbons. No cold-hard-cash to help offset the cost of the dresses, shoes, wigs, hotel rooms, price of gas travelling, etc. I have to say I was keeping track of what kind of money I was investing, but I don’t have it handy right now and I never added it up. But here’s the scenario:

My Girl all decked out!

My Girl all decked out!

I asked my 12 and 9 year old if they want to do Irish Dancing. 12 year old, maybe, 9 year old, definitely. The 9 year old gets registered ($55.00) and cost of class is $75.00 a month (for 1 hour every Monday). Soft shoes needed; new $55.00+, used, I got a pair for $15.00. School dress is needed $; said school dress needs to go to person to embroider school pattern on dress $, socks are needed, $10.00 a pair. We need to travel 3 ½ hours away for a fundraiser $$$ gas, Hotel, food, etc. Now she needs hard shoes; $115.00+ new, I get a used pair for a steal at $85.00. We need to drive 3 hours away for a practice session for 1 hour. Oh, wait. We are going to do the summer classes at our studio 45 minutes away from you; I pay someone gas money weekly to transport child. August comes, child has worn hard shoes 3 times, and decides she is done.

 

Was I mad? not at all. Upset? Nope. Disappointed? A little. I had to make it clear to her that at her age, this was not something she could quit for a year and then get back into; she would be farther behind than she would like, and competing against kids much younger than her.

 

She never looked back, and neither have I. But I am still the proud keeper of a school dress, soft shoes, hard shoes, socks, and a wig that I need to take 10 minutes to put on Ebay and sell.

 

The whole experience was definitely a learning one for both (all) of us. I know if I hadn’t asked, she never would have approached me and said “Mom, I want to do Irish Dancing”. I am not 100% sure she even knew what it was before she started. So as I read through what appears to me to be horror stories of kids and pageants, I realize I was likely at the beginning of mine, but luckily my little girl threw the brakes and we got off that ride. It takes a special kind of family life and commitment to have a child enrolled in something like pageants, sports, music, or dancing. As a single full-time-working Mom, I think the more experienced she became, the thinner I would be getting stretched.