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Feb. 16, 2018
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ANGIE:

Why is it important to break beauty standards?

to break typical beauty standards is important because there’s such a vast variety of forms of beauty aside from the “standard” that need to be explored and appreciated. The world would be so boring without them!

What would you say to somebody who is insecure about your selected non-typical beauty standard? 

I’d say that it’s totally okay to have acne. It can definitely be treated in various healthy ways! Having acne is undoubtedly a difficult process and journey, but don’t let your superficial impurities kill your confidence. What matters is you: your happiness, passions, etc. What’s also important to keep in mind is to be okay with your imperfections, and to not beat yourself up because of them.

What does "normalize" mean to you?

To me, the term “normalize” means to view something as common and acceptable.


ERIS:

What does "normalize" mean to you?

"Normalize" is a concept that me, in my entire form, can be accepted. It is, giving somebody unconventionally beautiful a platform. It is a reminder to everyone that people like me exist, and that we are just as important as the people that are being represented in everyday media. 

Why is it important to break typical beauty standards?  

It is important to break beauty standards because with beauty standards it gives people this impossible standard that they feel they should reach to be deemed acceptable in society. People like me are here to show them that they are beautiful in their own skin and to be proud of how you are and how you look.

What would you say to somebody who is insecure about your selected non-typical beauty standard?

I would tell somebody that is insecure about their weight or body type to stop comparing themselves to anyone else, to understand that their entire being is beautifully unique. I would also say to live for yourself: people will judge you no matter how you look, so don’t live in anybody else’s shadow, 'cause you can’t be outshined.


KASSIDY:

What would you say to somebody who is insecure about your selected non-typical beauty standard?

I would say that it is okay to embrace your insecurities and to make sure that you are happy with yourself. At the end of the day, those who have negative opinions about you will not have to live with those opinions; you will. So it is important to brush the negativity off and keep moving forward with yourself. I used to hate my gap teeth and my overbite, but then I realized that my mother was still beautiful and invigorating even with her large gap. Slowly, but surely, I started seeing high fashion models with gaps. Seeing my mother and the other models with my insecurity really helped me realize that I was not alone. You are still beautiful.

What does "normalize" mean to you?

To me, the word “normalize” brings a negative connotation along with it. I believe this because I feel that there should be no set definition to the word normal. I think that someone else’s normal may not be another person’s. Therefore, the word “normalize” may be portrayed in a unique way to several, different individuals. In my opinion, the word “normalize” means to conform, whether that be in a negative or positive context. Too often I hear the word “normalize” being associated with conformity to rape culture, music and sexual discrimination. To me, the word normalize means “to make the same as others”.

Why is it important to break typical beauty standards?  

It is important to break normal beauty standards because the societal beauty standards that exist today are a false representation of what people really look like. Not only that, but somewhere in the world, there is someone who may see themselves as “imperfect” due to the fact that there is no one to personify their unique characteristic. It is important to break beauty standards so people can find confidence in themselves while also realizing that they are not alone.


KIEZE:

What does "normalize" mean to you?

“Normalize” means the deconstruction of common beauty standards. It means finding beauty in your own uniqueness. Being normal translates to being beautiful.

Why is it important to break typical beauty standards?

It’s important to break typical beauty standards because of representation. it’s to show that younger people don’t have to have perfect skin, teeth, or hair to be featured in magazines or to be considered beautiful.

What would you say to somebody who is insecure about your selected non-typical beauty standard?

Smile. smile even if you hate it. eventually, you’ll begin to love it and forget why you were insecure in the first place. beauty isn’t in the eye of the beholder; beauty can exist on its own. if you believe that you’re beautiful, then you’re beautiful.


MARIA:

What does "normalize" mean to you?

Normalization means the act of wanting to conform to social norms and not expanding your mind, body, and soul to think outside the box to flourish one's self-identity.

Why is it important to break typical beauty standards?

Society often gets so wrapped up with the idea of what’s deemed as “aesthetically pleasing” based on social media’s beauty standards that we forget what’s real or what’s artificial beauty. Just being true to yourself and not falling victim to how society wants you to look like or act like is in my opinion beautiful, simply because you’re saying: "Fuck your standards! I’m unapologetically me and won’t conform to any superficial standards." With that mindset, your self-esteem blossoms into a rose that can never wither.

What would you say to somebody who is insecure about your selected non-typical beauty standard?

As long as I could remember I grew up around people who implemented the idea of the “paper bag rule” to further explain if you’re lighter than a paper bag then you’re sought out as being beautiful or could excel in life easier simply because of the color of your skin. Now, going through life knowing this exists, I suffered from extreme insecurities. I would always be so hard on myself to reach this nonexistent idea of “perfection” that I went to extreme measures to downplay the fact that I was dark-skinned. Black girls are so consumed with images of white women being praised and hashtagged as “goals” for features that biologically didn’t come from them, but in the same token seeing their mothers [and] sisters being criticized, dehumanized, and fetishized for the same features they were actually born with. And just like that, these young women are dealing with an identity crisis at such an early age, like I did, and desperately searching for women who represent them in the media but are hard to find. It wasn’t until a couple years ago where I reached a understanding that those slurs and remarks about being dark-skinned were only based on someone else's insecurities or ignorance, so I began to carry myself in such a way [as] to not let that negative energy affect me and embrace the skin I was born in. So it is possible to overcome those insecurities. With the right knowledge, support, and practice of self-love, you will begin to realize that you are the true definition of black girl magic!


NATHANIEL:

Why is it important to break typical beauty standards?

It is important  to break typical beauty standards because people in the world should realize that people come in so many shapes, sizes, colors, abilities and forms of beauty. The only person with the ultimate power to tell you what’s beautiful is you. Don’t let anyone take that away.

What would you say to somebody who is insecure about your selected non-typical beauty standard? 

Live your life for you. You only have one life; the last thing you want to do is to reflect on the life you’ve lived and realized that you lived miserably. Live your truth, accept yourself, and remember that no one is going to love you like you would love yourself. It may take time to accept yourself, as it did for me. But one of my teachers told me that you only have one body, and you need to love that body and take care of your body. As long as you are healthy you are beautiful to me and the world; that, I can promise.

What does "normalize" mean to you?

It means taking something that is not seen as the norm and making it a norm even if that means making people uncomfortable. People try to shove everyone into a box of unrealistic standards and try to make those unrealistic standards the norm or what’s accepted. Forget that! You make your own norm, and the world has to adhere to your vision of beauty.


SAYIDDA:

Why is it important to break typical beauty standards?

It is important to break typical beauty standards because it avoids fabricating a “perfect” society. Everyone is different, and to break the ordinary creates your beauty.

What would you say to somebody who is insecure about your selected non-typical beauty standard? 

Each aspect of you is symbolic to who you are. Gaps make you transparently different from others; [they're] something that gives you that signature thing about you. It adds personality simply with its presence and is praised in many cultures, and you naturally have it! Gaps are mysterious and sexy, so smile and show the world your beautiful imperfection.