Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Smile Self-Esteem

It's time to get real for a second and talk about some issues that are pressing and prevalent in our society. I read this article in the Daily Mail (from the UK) and it said that 75% of all British women avoid having their picture taken because they have a negative self-image. I realize this may not be where you or I live but the point is that this is a global trend, women everywhere are more and more self-conscious by the second. If we're not striving to lose 50 lbs, we're obsessed with our makeup, the way we dress, our hair, our nails, the list goes on and on. The problem begins and ends with society, what do I mean by this? I mean that I can't walk out of the house without makeup on (and I've learned this since I was in high school) without people telling me that I look sickly and pale, or asking me what's wrong. That's just my face, guys, I wasn't born clowned-up, stuffed into tights, and pushed up by a bra (and neither was Kim Kardashian, for example).

Facebook photos are so pathetic now, too. I look at my friends posted pictures and they're all posing like some hypersexed faux-supermodels, nobody is real anymore, everyone tries to be staged and perfect. In all honesty, I can't harp on others without admitting my own faults, I've done this plenty of times, I used to think that smiling made me look too young and imperfect so I would pout in every picture for years, what a goon. 36% of brides are anxious about their wedding day not because of the colossal decision they're making but because they will be the focus of attention and photographed extensively.

Despite the fact that a whopping 52% of women are scared to death of smiling in a photograph for fear of showing their yellowish or wonky teeth and smile lines, men appear to firstly be attracted by a woman's smile rather than her cleavage or legs. The article suggests that instead of saying 'cheese', women should be saying 'oats' to create a perfectly plump pouty smile, but I think this is absolutely ridiculous. If you can't even smile without faking it, whose to say you aren't faking your entire life away? I'm going to say that this issue runs so deep that it permeates every facet of our social interactions and it has got to stop with you. If we continue this deification of what a woman is supposed to be (and it's happening to men, too) we'll fall down a slippery slope where not only our mental image is warped but that of our children and their children's are going to be more disturbed than even ours.

There's no reason in the world you should try to control the way you smile, just brush your teeth regularly and see a dentist once every 6-9 months for a cleaning and you should be fine. Stay away from unhealthy things that stain your teeth such as caffeine and sodas, and bare your chicklets to the world without a care of what others will think about you. I'm going to let you in on a little secret, the most attractive thing about a person is their confidence, so if you can muster that you can pull anything else off. How could you even have time to have fun if you're always worrying about how yellow your teeth are, sucking in your stomach and hiding any sign of a blemish? God forbid we should just be who we are, right?

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