Gone are the days when women would find anything they needed to know about beauty in weekly magazines filled with beautiful, perfect models and the most recent five tips on how to get tummy abs while still eating cake.
Be honest about this… When was the last time you bought a magazine with the intent of reading it? Actually reading it. Not because you were supposed to go on a long train ride or you were bored out of your mind waiting for an appointment. The last time you bought it because you wanted to find out how to make your hair look gorgeous without paying a visit to your hair stylist?
If I’m being honest with you and myself, the last time I bought any magazine was probably a little over 10 years ago.
That’s mainly because I get what I want from social media. Want to get that six pack? Social media teaches you how. Want to know how to do nail art? Social media shows you how. Want to enhance your lips without getting Botox? Social media has the answer! It’s impossible to not be bombarded with how-tos and tips and everything you didn’t know existed when you’re on social media.
Is There an Issue?
The problem I see with this is… all my insecurities from before came back in full force. When I was feeling down and not so lovable, all I had to do was not buy those magazines that day or that week. Now, I can’t escape it. It’s everywhere I go; it follows me around and I can’t just switch it off. Even if we switch off our phones, there’s still our tablets, and laptops and whatever else.
I’m sure I’m not the only one who’s experiencing these feelings. Social media impacts how I see beauty, what I think about myself and my body and it’s influencing my life, my future. If there is a switch off button I don’t know about, please do let me know, because on those really bad days, I don’t need to be told I should be skinnier, prettier, have more make-up on, start a better skincare routine or workout more.
Back in the day, we could just throw the magazine away, or if we were really feeling it, toss it in the fireplace. Today, we carry this negativity pool with us, in our pockets or our bags.
Is There a Light at the End of the Tunnel?
Yes, it can be negative and dark. Social media has a way of beating us when we’re already down. But, listen to this. It can also be wonderful! It can be so, so positive for you, your body and your mind.
With social media, I’ve also learnt to take better care of myself and my body. I now know more things about beauty than I ever have, and I know what to look for and what to do to make myself feel better. How would I even find out about contouring if not from social media? How would I know I should wash my face every day, twice a day if not from social media? (Hey, you! Don’t judge me! I’m sure there was a time when you also didn’t know about this.)
It is so easy to find tips and advice about skincare and workout routines and even where to go for the best treatments like cosmetic clinics to take care of yourself, and, for example, rejuvenate your skin with anti-aging chemical peels. So many people come together and help each other, support each other and share amazing, successful tips that have worked out for them. If you look for the right ones, you’ll find a universe filled with loving, accepting and giving people who are more than ready to guide you and listen to you. They don’t shout what you’re supposed to be doing because they know everyone’s different and everyone has different solutions to the same problem.
There’s so much brightness in the dark tunnel of social media.
So, What I Came Up with is…
I’ve realised that taking care of my body and my skin does not have to be a negative thing; being reminded to do it is not automatically a bad thing. It’s about you being in charge of yourself, your life and your body. I do not let these almost unreachable things affect me, they don’t impact my life negatively, I know how different we all are and how lives are different, and I do not try to attain those things. They work for some people and I think it’s brilliant for them.
But I listen to myself, I listen to my own body. I see the glitter and happiness on social media, and I let the dark be just that, dark. I do not welcome it into my life, and neither should you. Just let it be there, scroll past it and feel good about yourself.
Do not ever chase after an impossible beauty standard; you’re way more than just standard. You’re you.