Thought Catalog

Why We Should Stop Telling Girls What To Do To Be Beautiful

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“Lose some fat.” “Cut your hair.” “Don’t wear that.” “Be more ladylike!” “Guys don’t like girls like that.” “5 Ways to Look Like Angelina Jolie”

These examples of the “simple” pieces of advice that we think are helpful to girls…. are really not.

Girls vary. Insecurities vary. Just because a girl is within the scale of what society accepts to be beautiful, doesn’t mean she feels beautiful. She can be insecure, too. And when she’s insecure, she’s not trying to catch attention or gain compliments and sympathy. She doesn’t need us to tell her that she has it all and she has absolutely no reason to feel down. However a girl can be short of what SOCIETY expects beauty to be, and still feel like the most beautiful girl in the world. And when she’s confident, she’s not being haughty. She doesn’t need us to tell her that she’s not beautiful. She doesn’t need us to point out her flaws, because she already found home in them. In the same aspect, a girl can be society-acceptable and at the same time feel at home in her skin. And when she’s confident, she’s not showing off. She’s not full of herself. She doesn’t need you to remind her to be humble because she knows when she should be. It doesn’t matter who a girl is or what she has. Her insecurities are valid. And we don’t need to tell her how she can be beautiful.

In the internet, an insecure girl finds lists of how she can be a better girl or how a guy can like her more, how she can be pretty, how she can be beautiful. And she reads those lists. She follows those lists. Outside the internet, an insecure girl asks her friends for advice, and they tell her what she can do. And she follows their instructions. Outside her circle of friends, a boy turns her down because she’s not pretty enough. She goes back to the lists and instructions and strives to be prettier for him. At home, she asks her mom how to be beautiful. Her mom tells her she already is. But she doesn’t believe it.

Girls try so hard. So hard. To please people around them. And to be honest, there’s nothing wrong with wanting to please people, just choose the right ones to please. And she just has to make sure that she is pleased with herself before anyone else is pleased with her. She can do whatever the hell she wants, wear whatever she wants, cut her hair or grow her hair, eat a lot or eat less. She can dress for a boy, dress for herself, wear make up or not, be loud or quiet. She can be who she chooses to be. And be passionate about it. For when she’s passionate, she’s beautiful.

We should stop telling girls what to do to be beautiful because they will listen. They will always listen. A girl, no matter how much she wants to be herself, will always wonder what society thinks of her. And when she finds out that she’s not beautiful enough in her own little way, she will change. Even when she doesn’t have to. We should stop telling a girl what she should do to be beautiful because she will never know the truth… that she doesn’t need a list, she doesn’t need advice, she doesn’t need a boy, she doesn’t need instructions, she doesn’t need the internet or society to tell her how she can be beautiful. She only needs herself to give her OWN advice, make her OWN lists, set her OWN standards, her OWN basis of beauty. The only place she needs to feel at home in is her own skin. The only girl she needs to look like is herself. The only person who can tell her how to be beautiful is herself. Not me, not you, just her.

Because when she feels beautiful, she is. TC mark

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