10 Women Talk About Beauty Standards And What They Are Doing To Empower Each Other


As women, we experience many up’s and down’s when it comes to our physical appearance and our ideation of beauty. Personally, this is something I struggled with a lot growing up, but have come to a place in my young adult life where I understand what beauty means to me more and more and feel confident in who I am and what I look like. That may not be the case for every young girl/woman out there and so I talked to 10 women about beauty standards and what they are doing to empower each other. Let’s hear what they have to say.

Bayli Armendariz on Self-Care + The Beauty Industry  In The Social Media Space

“I strive to provide myself with all of the self-care that I possibly can. I take every day as it comes and whatever is going to make me feel the most confidence, I trust myself and go with it! If I wake up and want to pamper myself with loads of skincare and rock a fresh face, then so be it. But at the same time, I feel cool and confident stepping out with a full face of makeup to blur any imperfections and bright blue eyeliner. Although none of us should be comparing ourselves to others, social media makes it hard not to and with a lot of the beauty industry online currently, we’re constantly feeling the pressure to improve something that doesn’t need to be improved. “

10 Women Talk About Beauty Standards And What They Are Doing To Empower Each Other

Sylvie Eskridge on Beauty Being An Art Form + Getting Rid of “Standards” For Her Beauty Routine

“The beauty industry is an art form, therefore I truly believe that it gives people the tools to create art, which to me is one of the most positive things you can have in a society. If I’m looking at it negatively, I can definitely make the connection of it bending to trends, which don’t always everyone’s best interest in mind. On one hand, it’s great that people can use it to create art. On the other, it can also ostracize those who don’t wish to partake, whether it be in the actual art form itself, or just the trends.” 

“In the past year or so, I’ve basically gotten rid of any “standards” for myself that go beyond just taking care of my skin. I leave the house without makeup often, but I also love to play with different looks. The only standards I really have for myself now is to always moisturize and use SPF. I would say even more so in the past few months, I have really stopped comparing myself to others related to beauty. I’ve been focusing on following people who are very real and honest, and who are proud of their beauty, whether it be full faced or bare skinned.”

10 Women Talk About Beauty Standards And What They Are Doing To Empower Each Other

Anna Farrel On Being Kind + Empowering Other Women

“Something I’ve noticed is that as I grow older, I find myself wanting to be more like my friends who are genuinely kind. I strive to care more about my heart than my outer appearance. I used to think the “pretty” girls who looked mean or were mean were the “cool” ones. High school sadly supports this theory. But now I know and realize that people see way past your appearance and really only see the type of person you are. Again, some people don’t realize this yet but as I grow older, I appreciate nice people more and more. I can’t help but emphasize that I see past it now only to care about if a person has a kind heart. That’s the standard I hold myself to now and hope I will forever.” 

“I definitely have multiple friends who don’t see their own beauty, and I struggle myself. But when affirming that they are indeed beautiful in their own way, I try not to respond to their self-hate at all. Or just say “oh you’re not fat.” Instead, I try to focus on emphasizing what they do like about themselves or mentioning things that they might not even know they possess. One of my best friends, Mckayla, keeps me in check when I put myself down. And I love her for that.”

10 Women Talk About Beauty Standards And What They Are Doing To Empower Each Other

Desiree Coleman on Body Positivity + Pampering Other Women

“I LOVE seeing other women comfortable in their own skin and embracing the quirky things we personally may not like about ourselves. I also feel like the glass ceiling has been broken. I’m seeing woman everywhere taking initiative, stepping out, and getting the job done in so many different ways. It’s super inspiring and I’m so happy I get to see movements like this!” 

“Honestly, the best way I can empower other women is through giving them a fresh new look! I’m grateful to be in an Industry where I can not only uplift and connect with people through words but also physically give them their dream hair. It’s fun to enhance people’s features, and help them appreciate just how beautiful they are with a little hair TLC!” (Check out her work here.

10 Women Talk About Beauty Standards And What They Are Doing To Empower Each Other

Kelly Peacock on Positive Self Talk + Embracing Your Flaws

“Believe it or not, it’s a desperation thing. To be pretty, I mean. The standards of beauty have changed so much over the years and nearly every woman tries so hard to follow the trends. For the longest time, I found it so hard to believe I was beautiful. To this day, I’m still having a hard time lifting myself up. Especially when social media is a thing, it’s hard for me to not compare myself to others. I don’t feel good when I unknowingly belittle myself. So I’m learning how to change, how to not put others on a pedestal. I’m learning how to compliment myself just as often as I do for other women. I remind other women of their worth and remind them that their feelings are valid. I remind them of how strong and smart and capable they are. I’m learning how to embrace who I am, flaws and everything. I’m understanding that it doesn’t matter how I look, but how I feel. To me, that’s the most important thing, and I will not let myself shrink.” 

10 Women Talk About Beauty Standards And What They Are Doing To Empower Each Other

Nicole Tillotson on Verbal Affirmations + Celebrating Women

I truly think it is a process for every person to truly see their own beauty from themselves; we have never seen our exact perception of ourselves from our own eyes. Flipped pictures exist, but seeing us from a bystander’s point of view will always be impossible. And that’s when the power can shift to others — who see us in our full self — to uplift and affirm our beauty. Compliments — they’re free. And maybe on average, take maybe only 10 seconds of our time. Pointing out and celebrating a feature that is unique to others, whether their style, their character or their personal look, often challenges, applauds and enforces what could be a trait one views negatively about themselves. My personal motto: If you think a positive thought about someone, you never know if that’s something that they might be needing to hear. Tell them! Uplift them! Be a safe space to grow along with other humans, whether it’s the middle-aged mom in line at the grocery store with a beautiful smile or your best friend’s resilience and capacity to overcome in life.” 

10 Women Talk About Beauty Standards And What They Are Doing To Empower Each Other

Amanda Smith on Cultivating Real Friendships + Her Biggest Physical Insecurity

“For me, beauty standards were really hard because I felt like, naturally, I never fit the “beautiful women” idea. I’m not tall with blonde hair and blue eyes. I don’t have big boobs. In fact, I barely have them and it’s my biggest insecurity. I have gone through stages of feeling good about my body and stages where I contemplate getting a boob job to look more “womanly.” What is changing in the beauty industry (& I’m so thankful for) is the number of women who are seen as “beauty icons” or “fashion icons” and have a small chest like me. Kendall Jenner and I have the same bra size! What!?! So that just goes to show, it’s about how you rock your confidence and finding clothing that makes you feel beautiful. For me, fashion is a huge way I express myself, and how I feel. I feel beautiful in a killer outfit, that fits well and shows off my personality.” 

“As far as empowering women, I really just try to extend friendships and authentic connections to everyone I meet. I want all my followers, friends, co-workers, or passersby to feel like I’m someone they can be real with. Honest with, and relate to. That they don’t need to feel threatened, or competitive, or distrusting of. Most girls feel they can’t have real friendships with other women. That someone is out to get them, or won’t truly accept and love them. Having real friendships where you support them, you cheer them on, and you keep all their secrets, THAT’S what women need. That’s something we don’t have. TV and film don’t even represent healthy female friendships, and that’s my way of supporting others. By being someone they can lean on, and someone who will fight with them in their corner, and celebrate their victories as if they were my own!”

10 Women Talk About Beauty Standards And What They Are Doing To Empower Each Other

Shakira McGowan on Being The Best Hype Man + Inclusivity

I think whether or not you believe it, being called beautiful, being complimented, or just encouraged in general makes you feel good about yourself. So whenever I greet my lady friends, I like to give a cool “YAS QUEEN! GO OFF! YOU’RE SO GORGEOUS! ” so that they know how beautiful they are in my eyes. I do it because that’s what the amazing women around me did and still do for me.” 

I honestly believe there is a lot of negative assumptions made about the beauty industry when in fact today I feel like it’s better than ever. There are a lot more positives than negatives. For one, the beauty industry is so so so much more inclusive. Not only to a wide variety of skin tones but, the industry now displays and advertises “beauty” as an all-inclusive thing. Beauty and what’s being advertised as beautiful is fair skin, dark skin, everything in-between, natural hair, old, young, freckles, gaps, plus sizes, petite humans, and so many other features that contribute to an individuals beauty. I think there is always room for improvement but its a beautiful thing to see how much has changed in just a matter of 3 or 4 years.”

10 Women Talk About Beauty Standards And What They Are Doing To Empower Each Other

Stephanie Reyes on Loving Herself + Eating Healthy

“Growing up I always felt different and I grew up with a lot of discontentment with my body and who I was. I’m a naturally curvy Puerto Rican woman and I desired to look just like the girls in magazines. I grew up googling fad diets and counting calories in each bite I would take of food. It took a toll on both my physical and mental health. It wasn’t until I moved back to New York where curvy bodies and diversity are more accepted that I learned to truly love myself for who I am. To not hate my body for not fitting in clothes that are the wrong size or just not made for me but to love my body and nourish it with wholesome foods. The most valuable lesson I’ve learned in life is to love myself fully.” 

10 Women Talk About Beauty Standards And What They Are Doing To Empower Each Other

Michelle Montes on Representation + Fighting For Equal Rights

“I believe that, due to social media, women have begun to compare themselves to unrealistic beauty standards portrayed by those with thousands of followers. In a world where almost everything we see online is a fake reality and anyone from influencers to actual celebrities have made a brand of themselves in order to sell certain toxic beauty products to their fans (such as fit tea & gummy bear for hair growth), it is impractical for younger girls to hold themselves up to the beauty standards created by this industry. A positive outlook on beauty standards portrayed on social media is the fact that companies have become more aware of the young women spending money on this industry and have started to include women of all sizes & POC, all while embracing the LGBTQ community as well!” 

“I empower women by showing my support in any way that I can. I believe it’s crucial for women to stick together, especially in a world where women are still portrayed & valued as less than men. Empowering one another has a big effect on our lives as we learn that we’re not alone in & can rely on each other while holding those who devalue women accountable in the fight for equal rights.”

10 Women Talk About Beauty Standards And What They Are Doing To Empower Each Other

There are so many women who feel the same way about the beauty industry but are sticking together to make it a more inclusive and empowering place for everyone. I’m so lucky to be a woman during this time when I can see the shift in the beauty industry happening right before my eyes. It’s important for us to widen our beauty standards and empower each other along the way. What are your thoughts on current beauty standards? What do you do to empower women in your life? Let us know in the comments below! We would love to hear from you.

Feature Image: https://www.instagram.com/annafarrell/
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Amanda Smith

Amanda Smith is a freelance writer, social media + branding specialist, and all around fashionista. She loves writing about fashion, beauty, wellness, and career advice. Her dream is to turn her own personal brand into a fulltime business where she can create content, products, and all sorts of media that inspires young women around the world. In her free time she loves to thrift, drink coffee, practice film photography, travel, get outside, and make content for her blog. You can usually find her staying in on a Friday night with a face mask, cuddling up to a puppy she's sitting, and watching Youtube videos.

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