Decorative Flower
Her Realm, Personal website and blog of Cole
Jan 24

Dear Men, Dear Media, Dear You

Many moons ago, I wrote a post entitled “7 Truths About Women.” I don’t think many people read the piece because the very first item on the list is something that people don’t understand. But let me back up for a bit.

I am signed up for the ChickAdvisor newsletter. I once won some makeup from the site, actually. It’s a Canadian-based site with a community, reviews and giveaways every week. This week’s newsletter features a giveaway that you can enter by commenting on a post entitled: I Hide This Beauty Routine from the BF – What Do You Keep Secret?

I didn’t even realize this was a giveaway post until now — see how much I pay attention? However, I was curious about the things that other women answered. Indeed, the author herself shared the same “secret” as most commenters.

Hair.

Hair on toes. Hair above the upper lip. Peach fuzz on the body and face. Hair that’s thicker or more coarse than we’re comfortable with. As a whole, the comments talked about all sorts of hair removal and camouflage

  • Bleaching

    Hair removal

    I’d rather be having fun than removing hair.

  • Shaving
  • Depilatory creams
  • Plucking
  • Trimming
  • Wax
  • and more

If you’re a man — or even a woman — and you didn’t realize there were this many ways to deal with hair, consider yourself lucky. No, really.

In reality, women are not fair-free creatures dropped from heaven with skin as soft as a baby’s bottom. We’re not. But we’re expected to achieve this so we invest all sorts of moneys into cosmetics and makeup to try to achieve to these standards, which might just be impossible.

Who’s feeding us these ideas, which so often make us insecure? It’s not men. Men, as it turns out, are not that damned picky. Really.

It’s the media. The media that’s fueled by pharmaceutical and cosmetic companies. The reason they tell us we aren’t enough. We aren’t good enough, thin enough, tall enough or what-have-you enough is because if we believe that, we’ll buy whatever those companies are selling. Magazines exist for the ads. Everything in between those is filler.

It’s not just about hair removal. Lips should be full and red, eyebrows arched, hair perfectly coiffed, skin tanned, nails filed and painted, breasts full and bouncing, skin clear and without imperfections, and we should always look fresh and dewy no matter what real life demands of us. In some ways, men face some of the same expectations. I don’t deny this. This post is not about you, men.

This post is about women who see images on the TV, on billboards, in magazines and online that suggest there are ways to be.  These ways do not typically come naturally. Sure, not every woman deals with toe hair, but if you ask among your friends, you’ll find that many do. Yet, everywhere we look, we’re told these things are not womanly or feminine.

The way we naturally are is not feminine, we are told.

And if we care about that, we spend countless hours trying to obtain the unobtainable. Some people care more than others, and some women care not at all. I envy them. I cannot go a day without shaving, moisturizing and donning expensive underwear. I often wear CC cream because I am so opposed to the natural appearance of my skin. The list of beauty items I’ve reviewed is far smaller than the list of things I’ve tried.

I once wrote this on a forum:

Shaved, waxed, plucked, lotioned, oiled, moisturized, pumiced and scrubbed.. and I still feel kinda icky. Being feminine is so fucking hard.

So when a woman spends more time in front of the mirror or in the shower than her partner likes, it’s because she cares enough about what the media has told her is wrong with herself. Things that are natural but that which she has come to belief are unnatural, perhaps even ugly or making her undesirable. She pays an inordinate amount of time concentrating on herself, sometimes to the point of not being able to enjoy herself, because she’s been taught that everything about her is wrong.

And if you ever made an offhand comment abut how her feet were too rough, the hair on her toes gross or point out the peach fuzz above her lip, you’re contributing to this way. She may spend half of her life in the bathroom with her secret routines because she’s afraid to show you the real, natural her because you buy into this bullshit.

No, you’re not the only one. Actresses, models and singers, pretty much everyone in the public eye goes through these routines. The only difference between those women and myself is they have personal stylists, makeup artists and other helpers to get the work done. I don’t have those people or any of the education and experience they have. So I’m sorry if I don’t measure up.

Wait, no I’m not.

I think it’s ridiculous that a woman’s worth is connected so much to achieving an appearance that is so time consuming. And when she puts in the time? She’s judged for that to.

I think I shall wrap up this rant.

Dear men: understand what’s going on and give women a break.

Dear media: go die in a fire, you fuck faces.

Dear you: you’re beautiful naturally. Nothing is wrong with you, but if you like a little powder and rouge or enjoy the way your legs feel after shaving, go ahead and do it!


7 comments on “Dear Men, Dear Media, Dear You”

  1. It IS tough to have the right mindset. I went to the mall tonight, and every time I spotted myself in the mirror, I was unhappy with what I saw. The tiny mannequins and posters on the walls don’t help. If I’d actually tried anything on, I’m sure I would’ve felt crappier. The thing is, a year ago, I would’ve been thrilled to be the size I am now. But now that I’m here, I just want to be more toned/build more muscle/lose more fat…. the grass is always greener. I can always look better. I know it’s a messed-up way to think, but it’ll probably be something I struggle with for the rest of my life.

  2. It’s hard to talk about the struggle when it’s supposed to be effortless. =/

  3. I find that most men were happy to have the company of a woman that was interested in them. If they didn’t look like a makeup ad or Playboy, so what? They were talking to a chick!

  4. Oh, I’ve definitely seen men who care. For the most part, they’re douchebags and I don’t care what they say but I think even well meaning people can buy into the belief.

  5. Well said! It’s tough to be a woman – to pretend you don’t care, to want it all to be effortless, to wish you looked like a super model. At the end of the day, though, it really doesn’t matter what you look like – that doesn’t define who you are.

  6. “At the end of the day, though, it really doesn’t matter what you look like – that doesn’t define who you are.”

    I think the problem is enough people buy into the media that they truly don’t know this.

  7. Oh I know these all too well. I try to be happy with how I am, but things bother me more then I am worried about what others think.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>