In the past, glorifying perfection is completely normal. People didn’t have qualms with skinny supermodels and fair-skinned stars. Body-shaming was even socially acceptable. If someone had a problem with those social norms, their voices weren’t heard. Until social media was born.
Social media gave voice to underrepresented and marginalized groups. It allowed them to start body-positive movements and slam advertisements with harmful messages, such as those that subconsciously promote eating disorders and colorism. Society and corporations may still have a long way to go before embracing imperfection altogether, but at least, individuals and brands are starting to. Some influencers are also encouraging their followers to love themselves, flaws and all.
While it’s okay to fix or conceal your imperfections, they shouldn’t affect the way you see your worth. Your flaws make you human, and every human being is worth loving. If you’re someone who works in the beauty or fitness industry, it’s also important for you to understand that flaws aren’t bad. Sure, some body and skin issues may be linked to health problems, but they don’t, in any way, make a person less beautiful.
Below are the physical imperfections that you might be insecure about, but make you beautiful:
When you were a kid, your mom probably discouraged you from playing rough games, because you might get a wound that would leave a scar. Many girls can relate to this. But how bad can a single scar be?
Scars are a flaw to celebrate because it shows that you’ve survived a rough time. It’s more even incredible if you got your scar from a C-section birth or any operation. Even burn scars can be beautiful. Though it’s okay to minimize its appearance to increase your self-confidence, your scars always make a good story to tell.
2. Imperfect Teeth
In recent years, we’ve seen many influencers whitening their teeth using a UV device. And, unsurprisingly, they also have perfectly aligned teeth. White and aligned teeth are of course a sign of good oral health, and dentists want you to have it. However, fixing your teeth for the approval of others is an unhealthy reason to do so.
Dentists promote aligned teeth because crooked or crowded teeth pose many health risks. They promote their services not because they want you to feel insecure about your imperfect teeth. Rather, they want you to have good oral health.
That’s why they encourage patients to get traditional metal braces. In the past, people are ashamed to wear them because society saw metal braces as an eccentricity. Thankfully, people now see its aesthetic appeal. Dentists can even make gold-plated braces for patients who prefer them over the popular silver.
3. Stretch Marks
Stretch mark photos get viral on social media, and for good reason. People call it their “tiger stripes”, and share why they think it’s beautiful. Women typically get it from pregnancy, but stretch marks are actually a result of your skin repairing itself after a strain, including that from pregnancy or weight gain. Hence, men and children can get them too, though they’re indeed more common in women.
To normalize stretch marks, some brands have stopped editing them out of their models’ photos. This earned them praise from the market, and made models proud of their own tiger stripes, too.
4. Unruly Hair
Hair product commercials may still shame unruly hair, but they can’t stop people from promoting its charm. Straight hair or beachy waves don’t mean healthier hair. In fact, it’s almost impossible to achieve them without styling, unless you were born with straight hair. The beach waves, however, is hardly natural.
Hair types are a result of genetics. So don’t feel resentful if you don’t have the hair promoted on TV. As long as you use mild products and comb your hair regularly, your unruly locks can tame down and look healthy.
5. Imperfect Body
Body standards change through the years, proving that there is really no single body type that appeals to all. In ancient times, curves were coveted, but now, abs are in. Society and media basically treat body shapes and sizes as a fitness trend. And following fitness trends can be detrimental, because not all bodies are made to adopt a particular shape.
A fitness company has to learn this the hard way. They faced social media’s wrath when they sent out an email campaign that body-shamed their customers. To prove that not all fitness companies are body shamers, one company released a campaign entitled Every Body Happy. It pointed out that weight loss is just one small part of the amazing things that happen when you work out. Feeling good is in fact what you get the most. As such, the campaign slogan says “Feeling good is the new looking good.”
Continue promoting that flaws are beautiful so that the media will hear your voice and support your stance. It’s time we accept that beauty isn’t about flawless skins and skinny bodies. We should redefine it as being human and flawed.