Friday, August 21, 2015

Why My Clothes & Makeup are for ME and No One Else.


My bestie and I were talking the other night night about fashion and how we choose to present ourselves to the world, and we both had similar striking experiences with peoples' comments in regards to what we wear or how we choose to look, which got me thinking. I'm so sick and tired of people assuming that I dress the way I do or wear the makeup I do for men. Like somehow, I couldn't possibly be choosing that pair of shoes or that smokey eye look for any other intention than to get attention from men. Because that would be preposterous!




First of all, your individual style, your fashion sense, the things that you're drawn to, are a reflection of who you are. They are part of your soul. They are as much apart of you as your sense of humor or the color of your eyes. They are part of the fibers that make up your being!




Side note: you should never feel pressured to wear ANYTHING you don't feel comfortable in. As Helen Fielding wrote, "you should only buy clothes that makes you want to do a small dance". I 100% agree with this. Wear what you love, don't let what's "trendy" or "in" change that. (And it's totally okay to love what's trendy! The point is, don't feel pressure to look a certain way, love what you wear and you'll feel good in it all day!) Wear what you wear because you like it. 



Okay, back on task. Secondly, the archaic idea that women must conform their bodies and their individuality to societal demands in order to "get a man" is repulsive. If the only way to get a man is by looking or dressing a certain way, I don't want said man at all. Why do we continue to allow society to mandate how we look, how we dress, how we act? Why are women consistently dehumanized into sexual objects, whose only purpose or goals in life are to get attention from men? We are not objects. We are flesh and bones with intelligence and dreams and the power to make them happen. We do not need to dress a certain way or look a certain way in order to "get attention", because our souls are bright enough to do that for us. We shouldn't ever have to prove we're "worthy" of attention or "worthy" of love. As Queen Bey says, "I don't have to prove anything to anyone. I only have to follow my heart and concentrate on what I want to say to the world. I run my world." 

Thirdly, this also opens up another aspect of sexism that primarily only women face, and sometimes both sexes are participants. If a guy wears a nice pair of shoes to work or a nice suit, do you think anyone asks him if he is dressing like that to get a girl? Not in a million years. But if a girl wears nice shoes or a nice outfit, does her hair or makeup a certain way, she's asked "who are you dressing up for?" or "you know, you don't have to wear a lot of eyeliner to be beautiful. Guys actually prefer it when you don't ". (Thanks for the advice, but I'm not doing this for them.)

It's just so frustrating that even in 2015, women are still, on some levels, considered to only have (or should only have) one goal: finding the perfect man. Which is funny, because I'm only trying to find myself.  This is not an anti-men blog, I want to make that very clear. I have the desire to get married like many people do. But I'm not going to become someone else to do it. I'm not going to pick out my clothes in the morning thinking "I wonder what the male population will find most attractive today?" or "Gee, I guess I shouldn't wear this amazing purple eye shadow or this color lipstick because if I meet a cute boy today, I don't want to scare him off!" I'm not going to live my life for the pursuit of someone else. I'm going to live my life for me, for my happiness, and hopefully along the way I meet someone who gets me, the way I am. 

Somehow, our society has gotten it's claws deep into our skin, and we've got to start removing them, nail by nail.  I look at my beautiful nieces and I hope that they grow into a society that accepts women as they are, their bodies, their desires, their dreams. I hope that their strong spirits will be cultivated by our world and not diminished. We're slowly, ever so slowly, beginning to change. But it takes all of us working tirelessly to make that happen. Live your life for you, be generous and kind and compassionate and never, for one second, stop being who you are.

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