Thursday, April 14, 2011

Why are women obsessed with beauty?

Why do women spend half of their budget on cosmetics? Why do they look in the mirror every time they walk besides it? Why are they so worried about their complexion, dark spots, flab and breast size? Frankly speaking, I have never met any woman who was totally satisfied with the way she looks. I am sure even Aishwarya Rai and Katreena would agree to this. Although, I was never so obsessed with beauty, neither did I spend much on cosmetics but thinking deeply even I was never delighted with the way I look. And that made me ponder over the reasons why we as women do so. Is it inner consciousness or is it an influence of external factors.
Beauty is a parameter which has been disproportionately placed over women to achieve by society. You like it or not, there is immense pressure from everywhere to conform to beauty standards. The pressure ranges from blatant encouragement and dictation of behavior to subtle and unconscious behavior-reinforcement from people around. You realize that the day you are groomed, you are treated better. Women treat this as a subtle incentive and think that the social reward is worth the effort and time they spent in grooming themselves. By grooming, I do not just mean looking neat and formal, I mean all the painful procedures that women undergo to look well groomed like threading, waxing, facials, removing black heads, wearing uncomfortable high heels and multiple things that make them attractive.
The standards of beauty for us are still lower; hence we just restrict ourselves to grooming. While when I think about women who make a living based on looks like models and actresses, the beauty standards are way too high. Think about Heidi Montag- 10 surgeries in a day?
Women in china undergo foot binding (from the age of 3) to achieve lotus foot- which ultimately cripples them for life.
In Indonesia, women get their neck stretched to over twice its natural length using brass rings since they are very young. By the time the woman is full grown, she may have as much as 20 lbs. of metal around her neck that is now 10” – 15” long. Having that much weight on top your shoulders is uncomfortable thus restraining them in even ordinary tasks such as drinking water from a cup or looking up.
Women pull out their hair for an unnaturally receded hairline in England. American women undergo corset training for enhancing breasts and creating an extremely thin waistline thus restricting their ability to breath.
Indian women apply harmful chemicals like bleach and a variety of fairness creams thus spoiling the quality of their skin over a period of time at a promise of better complexion. Women go on strict diets and almost starvation causing anorexia and cessation of menses at an early age. Is the social reward really worth it?

They say “Beauty is Skin Deep”. Is it time to rethink the above proverb?

In my view standards of beauty have been different for different people. The pink, polished, tall high heeled blondes are as beautiful as the salty, dark, wild and curvy women. The Asian browns are as sexy as the Russian short, muscular types. Beauty may not be skin deep, but it definitely has different perceptions for different people. Natural is always beautiful. My advice to women is to start loving themselves the way they are, rather than torturing themselves with painful procedures and emotionally succumbing themselves to the gimmicks of the likes of Fair & Lovely, VLCC, Kaya and many others.


  1. amazing blog Ms Asnani..but I am puzzled about top 5 women in india who have made it big...hardly one of them has come only because of beauty...otherwise it has always been intelligence that takes someone through...also the pressure in girls is more peer pressure....i agree that well grroming is definitely important for a good career but its common for men and women......but your blog is I must say amazingly accurate about obsession about beauty in variosu parts of world...

  2. 5 women I mean...Indira nooyi..chanda kocchar...kalpana chawla..indira gandhi...aishwarya rai

  3. @Naveen- I agree.. i never said that beauty helps women swin in their career.. even Kalpana Chawala and Chanda Kochar would have tried high heels, fairness creams, diet plans etc in their 20s/30s. I was trying to mention the subtle societal pressure here.. Would u like to date a hairy fat woman with bushy eyebrows.. think about it!!!!

  4. @Snehto - I need to tell you that I dont need to think about dating a fat woman...I have a fiance who is amazingly beautiful both outside and inside...and it his inteaction with her that makes me mad for her and not her beauty alone...

  5. Its an old saying.. Men always select there partners after seeing a girl and also Women find there men with there profile and proffession. Looking the scenario women always haev society pressure to look good and smart. And we may see in our daily life how things chnged many times if women is beautiful.

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