51%: the beauty standard
In this episode 51%, experts in their industries review the harmful effects of the beauty standard and have transparent conversations about the impacts of the beauty standard in the entertainment industry.
Talk to any woman or girl of any age, and she's likely to tell you there's something about her appearance she really doesn't like.
That, to me, is most often a direct effect of our beauty culture.
I think it's important for us to recognize that the whole motivation of the beauty industry
is to make us feel not good enough because that's what gets us to buy products. Our conformity is largely unconscious.
That is, I don't know that we are born knowing why we want to buy mascara,
why we want to wear foundation. In order to make a change we need to be mindful
first of what the issue is. And without knowing about that, it's impossible to be mindful.
And I think consciousness changes everything. Once you're aware that your motivation to adjust your appearance has something
to do with other people's motivations rather than a motivation that's coming from yourself, I think that changes everything about the way
you might think about yourself in relation to the beauty culture. When we can unlearn to see our faces
and our bodies without objectification, that all falls away.
I wish we were more open and compassionate when we're talking about aging.
We are a deeply ageist culture, and that's something that I never really recognized until I became of the age
to appreciate it, which is 72. I think it started probably when I was in my 70s that I began to notice that my opportunities might have become
somewhat more limited. And I think it would have had a profound impact on my relationship with my mom.
I don't feel like I was compassionate enough with her when she got to be old. Now that I see what she was probably
going through when she was my age or for the last 20 years of her life because she lived into her 90s, I'm just full of admiration for her courage, you know,
and her refusal to complain about anything. There's such a division, you know,
between one age group and another age group and another age group there. Even the fact that we have different names for them, you know, like Gen Z and boomers,
and it causes a kind of, you know, isolation for each group.
I think it's not good for younger people either. And I wish that there were more acknowledgment of older people,
whether it's, you know, respect for the work they've done, respect for what they know, respect for what we can be doing.
It's part of the reason that I started my substack. As soon as I found something that re-engaged me with people,
it made me feel so much more generative and engaged and connected.
And I wish there were more ways for people my age to do that in our culture.
I just think it's so unfair. I don't think that anybody deserves to feel less than.
The body that you've been comparing my current body to was the unhealthiest version of my body.
I was posting these things saying, it doesn't bother me because I didn't want it to bother other people who are
experiencing the same thing-- all the while, being in the room posting, I'm crying my eyes out because nobody
deserves to hear those things. Everybody has a body, and everybody's body communicates differently.
Be your own superhero. Live your own movie. I don't want to spend my life wasting
it worrying about how I look or what other people think, how other people perceive me to be or what other people have to say about me.
God chose me to be great and to shine just like everyone else, but it's really about owning that and accepting that within yourself.
My body has been objectified my entire career. I never looked up to anyone because of their body. I was body positive then, and I'm body positive now.
I think we should be gentler and less comfortable commenting on people's bodies, no matter what. There are many different ways to look healthy and beautiful.
Celebrities and the media do actually have a lot to do with the trends,
and then the trends have a lot to do with the beauty standards of what we accept as beautiful.
Since I do work in the beauty industry and I see how many of my clients actually come with pictures of celebrities or pictures of people
they see on the internet and Instagram, I see that this actually does affect how people feel about themselves.
Yeah. I mean, I think for me being an Indian or South Asian woman in entertainment, what I notice
is that a lot of Indian women who get cast in things
frequently, like who are consistently working, have a tendency to have more Caucasian features.
In Hollywood, I think that that's kind of the trend. When you're ethnic, you're either like super ethnic-looking and that's what they're going for,
or you are ethnic with like, Caucasian features. We are all beautiful. We are all different.
But for some reason, we try to fit in on these standards that are created by the society.
Yeah, I totally agree. I mean, I think the standard has really shifted, and now, it almost just feels like everyone looks the same
and tries to look the same. And with social media and all of that, it's so accessible to us now, like what everyone looks like.
And so much of that also just isn't even real and it's photoshopped and facetuned and all of that, and so the standard
has gone like literally unrealistic, like it's computerized.
I remember when I was pregnant, I really organized my thoughts on how I wanted to raise this little person.
How do I fight against what we are actually taught, that whenever you do wear makeup or whenever you dress
up pretty, that's whenever people actually give you all those compliments? And what I've been doing with my daughter because she's looking at this all the time
and it's normal for her to see all this makeup, instead of being feeling that it is something that I want to keep her away from it,
just seeing it from another angle, so I've been trying to teach her that this is art instead of that this is the way to be beautiful.
Instead of being like oh, you're so beautiful! Oh! I love it. It'll be like, oh, you did it right. That's how you do it.
Now let's make some circles, and now let's put some more color. She thinks it's fun. The same way that she's painting in her coloring book,
then she paints on her face with mom's makeup. Yeah. So-- That's great. I mean, I'm trying to encourage art
in her and not just makeup. With my kids, we're all very petite. We're small, and people will be like, oh, your daughter
is so small. And so I teach her that small is also strong. We have a bunch of cats, and one of them is--
her name is Chiquita, she's small. But she's the strongest, the fastest, and she's the one that catches like the birds and all of that,
right? The boy cats, who are bigger, can't do any of that. And so I always kind of compare her to that, and I'm like, you're like Chiquita.
And I let her know that you know like you can be small and strong.
Sometimes we have to take the makeup off and face ourselves and look in the mirror and say, well, I like myself.
I love myself.
When I was shooting like, famous people like actresses, we always retouched them to the max.
And I couldn't see it anymore, you know? And I've always been a very authentic, very truthful person, so on one hand, you do the job,
but then, it's kind of painful when you see how much they distort it. I was kind of in my middle age as well,
and I never saw those women which I represent, and they were just not present.
What we read and what we see in the news and the magazines and in TV, how perfect everybody is made up, and you know,
this is like a fake world. Nobody's like that. I always had this vision of a diverse image of women.
I found, as well, a lot of women who totally understand my project, my mission, who backed it up.
You have the different ethnics. You have the different body shapes. You have women who went through cancer reconstruction,
no reconstruction, with their gray hair, with wrinkles, or even younger girls who do their shots in lingerie.
And they said look, this is who I am, and I'm fine with it. We name ourselves, so we call ourselves,
if you ask somebody, what is your IM? They are so different. It's so creative, so amazing. It's a present to me what they gave me, I think,
to make this book possible. And I'm forever grateful for that.
beauty personal care
Browse videos by topic categories