Lately it seems that the six dirtiest words in the English language are ‘I like the way I look’.
We rarely, if ever, hear those words come out of someone’s mouth. And if we do hear them, we are taken aback. One of the main insults I hear about girls, apart from that ever-loaded word ‘slut’, is “she thinks she’s so beautiful.” We’ll whisper it behind our hands to our friends, taking care to roll our eyes at the same time. How dare they like the way they look. How shallow. How in love with themselves they must be to think that they look nice.
But really, what is so wrong with them thinking that they do look nice? Beautiful even? And why shouldn’t they think that they’re beautiful? We all are.
We have always been told through the media that we should love the way that we look. But at the same time we are told that we need this dress, that lipstick, those shoes, to hide our flaws. To really be beautiful. We have become so used to noticing the parts of ourselves that don’t meet the conventional standards of ‘beauty’. Of buying products in a desperate attempt to change ourselves.
It has become socially acceptable to constantly insult ourselves. We stand in groups, trying to outdo each other. We pick at our faults. We focus on the bits of ourselves that we hate. It has become completely fine for us to say “I hate my mouth. My stomach. My arms or my nose”, but it’s become almost blasphemy for us to say “I love my stomach. I love the weight I am at. I think my nose is lovely.”
I don’t want to hear the women I know insult themselves. I want them to look in the mirror and see the beautiful women that I see. And I want them to own that. To feel it. To say it proudly without fear of ridicule.
So I am going to go completely against social convention and say it: I like the way I look. Heck, I even think I’m beautiful in my own way. And I refuse to be ashamed or embarrassed for saying it.