Models- the elite group of people who have the supposed perfect hair, skin, body, charming personality, etc. But what exactly separates a regular person from a model? As a young girl, I couldn’t pinpoint the answer to this question, because it felt that there were too many differences to count. It felt practically impossible not to pick out every flaw I had and compare myself to everyone. Not to bash on models though, after all, I am an embarrassingly avid watcher of America’s Next Top Model.
Growing up, I’d always loved this show- watching a group of seemingly flawless girls compete to be the best model- judged by the perfect Tyra Banks and other professional models. From the way, they posed, to their natural hair, to their beautiful huge eyes- they all seemed flawless. Often watching with my sisters and cousins, we collectively admired pretty much every single contestant on America’s Next Top Model. Their “flaws turned love” still seemed to maintain their perfect appearance.
Everyone has struggles
It wasn’t until recently re-watching several seasons of America’s Next Top Model, that I had come to a few realizations. Not every girl perceives themselves as perfectly as viewers like myself may. Many of them even seem to be insecure about at least one thing- even the seemingly perfect Tyra Banks!! It can be easy to forget that models too, may not be fully content with their appearance.
In countless episodes, I noticed Tyra comforting women by explaining that she too, has struggled with her appearance. It’s hard to imagine a world-famous supermodel insecure about her facial features, but Tyra admits to and accepts her imperfections. Regardless of how they look, what makes these women so admirable is their confidence and choice to embrace their flaws. Tyra Banks is truly admirable is for the example she sets for everyone, model or not.
Loving yourself isn’t always easy
It’s natural for anyone, especially women, to pick apart and criticize themselves for things they view as flaws, but it’s not always the healthiest behavior to immerse yourself in. Social media has made self-acceptance even more difficult for women in my generation. With photo-editing applications becoming increasingly more advanced, anyone can easily change their appearance online.
Although it can be tempting to make my five-head into a normal one, I try to think of Tyra’s words of encouragement. She often reminds models and her viewers that although you may hate unique aspects about yourself, they are what make you beautiful. As an adolescent, I absolutely hated the beauty mark above my lip. I despised that I was the only one with this seemingly disgusting birthmark on my face. I’ll admit, I dove into my mom’s makeup, desperately trying to make my beauty mark less noticeable. Thankfully though, my mom has a much lighter complexion than mine, so I knew her concealer in shade number 1 would not fool anyone.
Embrace your differences
As I grew older, I began to like that this beauty mark made me look different from everyone else. It also helped when my mom told me that even the drop-dead gorgeous, Cindy Crawford, had one- and that was part of what sets her apart from everyone else. It may be hard to love your big forehead, beauty mark, weird nose, awkward personality, etc. but these things you hate about yourself could be someone else’s favorite quality about you. Use your flaws turned love to embrace your unique features.
Don’t change yourself to fit in
Internally, I often find myself frustrated with being more of an introvert and struggling to open up to new friends. Despite how hard I try, it doesn’t come naturally to me to be social all of the time or talk openly to a stranger. It can be a struggle being an introvert, but I’ve found that this isn’t always a weakness.
Although being outgoing and bubbly is more conventionally admired, I’ve found that my “flaw” isn’t always so bad. There’s a lot to gain from sitting back and listening to what others have to say, rather than just trying to fill a silence or make it seem like you’re much more outgoing than you are. I honestly prefer to listen to what my friends have to say- whether it’s another story about their new cat, a new facemask to try, or a rant about their social life. Despite what the conversation is, there’s always something valuable to learn from listening to other people.
It can be easy to forget that listening too, is a skill. Being a good listener is crucial to any relationship, learning experience, occupation, etc. When changing my perception of this “flaw,” I realize that I don’t mind being the “quiet friend” at all. I may not be the one to start a conversation or make friends everywhere I go, but I’m proud to be someone that you can freely talk to and know will listen. Make your flaws turned love become your favorite aspect about yourself!
It’s all about your perception
Taking a step back and giving myself a little wiggle room has helped me to realize that this quality about myself that I’ve always seen as a flaw, isn’t really the worst thing. Internal imperfections are really all about how you choose to view them.
Physical imperfections go hand-in-hand with these internal struggles. Perceive yourself in a new way and let these flaws turned love to make you a more confident and happier person.
Beauty radiates from within
We may not all look like Gigi Hadid or Kendall Jenner, but that doesn’t diminish your beauty and worth, or even measure how much love people have for you. Some of the most beautiful girls I’ve seen in magazines or TV shows don’t really fit society’s mold of perfection at all. I’ve noticed that the most beautiful people are the ones who embrace their uniqueness and hold their heads high with confidence. It sounds cheesy but, beauty really does radiate from the inside. Whether you have an odd sense of humor, think you talk too much, or too little, etc. it’s all about how you choose to perceive yourself. Let your flaws turned love to exemplify how beautiful you feel and truly are.