My mother was Polish. Her mother had come to this country as a child and landed in Lorain, Ohio – a suburb of Cleveland. For as long as I can remember my mom would pack up me, my sister and my brother and we would go visit my grandma. Spending time at grandma’s consisted of a lot of sitting around the kitchen table hanging out with my mom and her trio of brothers (think “The Deer Hunter”). You get the idea. Continue reading
I grew up in the 70′s and I was obsessed with fashion magazines. Actually, fashion magazines were my crack. I craved them, I needed them, I let them define me. And, like crack, they also nearly destroyed me. My views on beauty were based on these fashion magazines. They told me what was beautiful. They told me how to be skinny, how to get a man, how to have sex and keep skinny, why men were attracted to “dumb women,” how to Continue reading
It was my next-to-the-last-day of my week long vacation, and I went out to dinner with a bunch of my high school girlfriends. Before I met them, I had made sure I looked cute, wore great clothes, had clean hair full of product, great make up, fabulous jewelry. We all hugged and squealed as always. Then Continue reading
The first time that the idea of women’s objectification or distortion in the media was brought to me was when I was at the young age of 12, and it was brought to me by a Smurf.
Yes, a Smurf as in a small blue cartoon creature living in a mushroom forest. I was at a conference in Los Angeles called Turn Beauty Inside Out, hosted by New Moon Magazine. Amongst the powerful and much admired female leaders there was Geena Davis, not only a long time actress, producer, and writer, but also a former model.
Davis began her spiel with a single image: a lovely blue Smurfette with long flowing blonde hair and a tiny white dress. Naturally, my first reaction was questioning why on earth this brilliant woman was bringing a silly cartoon TV show into her talk about inner beauty and respecting women. Then she started talking about it, really talking, and that was it, I was hooked on the idea. She talked about how despite yes, being Continue reading
Today I just wanted to lounge in bed. Actually every morning I have to be a leader to myself in order to get my day started with exercise. Today was no exception. Finally, after much debating why I should or should not go to my yoga class,
I propelled myself into forward motion and went. Yeah!
There is a beautiful woman named June who works out at my gym every day. When I go at 8:00 a.m., she’s there. June is always well groomed with a touch of lipstick, delicate earrings, and a twinkle in her eyes. I fascinate myself with observing Continue reading
So just what is beautiful, anyway?
Being thin / having curves / pregnancy. Blonde / brunette / redhead / salt and pepper. Youth / aging gracefully. Strength / vulnerability. Femininity / androgeny. Seventeen / thirty-seven / a baby. Being toned / being touchable. The hourglass / the thigh gap. Marilyn Monroe / The Mona Lisa / Coco Rocha / Barbie / Mother Theresa / Michelle Obama.
And / or:
Confidence. Authenticity. Intelligence. Honesty. Wit. Humor. Admitting wrong. Fearlessness, passion, growth, perfection. Continue reading
My whole world changed the day I noticed Tiffany D’Amore’s legs. It was a brisk afternoon in the fall of freshman year. We were changing classes, ambling in pairs down the narrow path that led from Main Building to the Library Building. We stopped on the path to chat with a group of fellow freshmen making the reverse commute. And there, against a backdrop of red maple trees, over talk about a grueling biology test and the upcoming dance at St. Peter’s, I glanced down and looked at Tiffany D’Amore’s legs. She was wearing navy blue stockings, just like half the girls around me. Our Continue reading
Have you noticed that everywhere you look, there’s media coverage, documentaries, and articles, all debating teen makeup. There seems Continue reading
Welcome to Speaking of Beauty’s Style Profile Test. Melissa McNamara and I designed this exercise to allow you to discover the one word that best describes you. It is Continue reading