No Need to Hide Behind the Mask


“I love my short hair. It frames my face better than long hair, and much easier to handle,” freshmen, Tessa Bacon (on the left) stated and Sydney Dean (on the right). “I may not be skinny, but I love my body,” Sydney gushed happily. They stand there hand and hand as a symbol of they are empowered without being the “perfect woman”.

Kayla Salemi, Staff Writer

As children many young women are told to love their bodies and to embrace their true selves. Yet, nowadays, women as young as two are plastering their youthful faces with layers of foundation. Though I have no problem with women wearing makeup because it is simple their preference, I have to ask why? Why do women feel the need to cover up their true selves? We should feel beautiful, but no one does. Society is changing the way we view ourselves, and it needs to stop right now.

I realized that this generation is different. We are caught up in what others think of us that we don’t remember who we truly are. Generations before us were not as nearly consumed with what they looked like and there was definitely not much photo shopping or makeup usage in their advertisement.  The society makes magazines full of all these “perfect women” which causing average women to question their beauty… their worth.  99.9% of photos in magazines, brochures, television advertisement, etc. are altered in one or another.  Women are called “ugly,” “unattractive,” and “unprofessional” when they go out without makeup on, yet when women put make up on they are called word like “fake.” Everyone seems to think whatever society says goes, but no. No one should be penalized for whether or not they put on makeup. Women seem to think that makeup makes them beautiful, but no it does not. “Confidence is the sexiest thing a woman can wear.” This saying has been around for as long as I can remember, yet no one seems to believe it anymore. Women think the only way they are truly beautiful is with makeup on. While makeup does emphasize one’s beauty, but women should still be comfortable in their own skin.

“Read these words: ‘You are a fat, worthless pig.’ ‘You’re too thin. No man is ever going to want you.’ ‘Ugly. Big. Gross.’ Horrifying comments on some awful website? The rant of an abusive, controlling boyfriend? No; shockingly, these are the actual words young women are saying to themselves on any typical day.” After reading this short excerpt from the article “Shocking Body-Image News: 97% of Women Will Be Cruel to Their Bodies Today,” I stared at it in dismay, for the only word that kept replaying in my head was “no.” No, no, no. I understand that some women are naturally skinny, but not everyone is. Women should not have to starve themselves to obtain “the perfect body type” because all body types are beautiful. Scratch that; there is no perfect body type. There are only healthy bodies and those come in all different shapes and sizes.

I stumbled across an article which was directed more towards the new generation, and I found this quote that stuck out to me: “Every day, our daughters are bombarded with lies. They see these lies everywhere; they are never free of them. They see them on billboards, in TV ads, in movies, in magazines, in video games, and online. Especially online. Every day, our daughters are presented with one acceptable definition of female beauty: white, tall, thin, large breasts. This image is a lie, unrealistic, artificatly constructed, and simply not true.” Me, being a young African-American woman, can relate to the “Acceptable defintition of the female beauty” because many times in my short life I have had other people tell me I am “pretty for a black girl” though I never fully understood what they meant. Why can’t I just be pretty in general? Why must I be labeled with the color of my skin? You do not have to be: white, tall, thin, or large breasted to be accepted by others. You could be black with a pillowy belly, and on the thicker side, and she wouldn’t be any less beautiful.


In addition, why does hair length define feminity? It does not. Hair length does not and should not define a woman in any way, shape or form, nor does the color a woman’s tresses. “Does Hair Length Define Femininity?” Lawerence quotes in the article, “All women should feel empowered to be given the choice on how they wear their hair. How you wear your hair doesn’t change who you are as a person no more than the color of your shirt,” personally I have short hair, and time to time people come up to me and ask me if I am homosexual- first or all even if I were homosexual (which I am not) why would my hair type contribute to that. I know a myriad of homosexual women who have long hair down to their bottoms. I find that women with short hair are just as feminine as women with long hair.  The world is filled with different hair types, and sometimes you just do not know why their hair is short. For all the ignorant people who make fun of girls with short hair for all we know, they could be fighting cancer. The next time you see a young woman with short hair, remember that sometimes it is just not her choice and she could be very insecure about it, and that does not give anyone the right to mock them about it. Dark curly hair is just as beautiful as straight blonde hair, and that is a fact.


In addition to the hair commentary I want to talk a bit about skin color. Hair and skin are tied together as is brother and sister. I personally have never seen a African American woman with naturally stick straight hair, nor have I seen a English woman with natural 4C hair. (4C is a term used to describe the thickest of one’s hair. 4C is the thickest hair one could have and is normally found on African Women or their descendants.) Many women are becoming very insecure about their skin tone, and it is not helping that famous “role models” like Beyoncé, Nicki Minaj, Rhianna, and Mariah Carey have all of the sudden become more a light-skinned than their true dark-skinned selves. We should not feel like we need to change for others because I feel like we should be the strong women we are known to be. “Black is power,” do not ever forget that. Asians, Hispanics, Native American, and all other colored races should feel empowered to be different, and to be unique. To be able to have something different about them than the average English people within America.


In conclusion, women should not be ashamed of their selves. Women are gifts from god, he made each every one of us for the sole purpose of being unique from one another. Inner beauty is the key to truly loving yourself. Young girls are coming into this world every day; let’s make it our goal to teach them that inner beauty is just as attractive as outer beauty. Teach them to make strong women in their lives their role models instead of all those celebrities that go around setting terrible examples for the young generation.