Thursday, March 4, 2010

I Took Pictures of Myself in a Swimsuit

They were not hot. And they were promptly deleted. (I would never post anything like that.)

Feeling good, losing weight and eating healthy are all wonderful - but don't turn you into Bar Whats-her-face overnight. But - is striving for that healthy?

I'm not what you'd call a "classic beauty", by Hollywood standards anyway. I don't have piercing blue eyes or thick hair. My lips are kind of thin. My skin is dry. My teeth are on the small side. I don't have high cheekbones or long eyelashes.

So...unless you're new to the blog, you know I've lost weight. (I mention it a lot - it's a form of accountability - I risk public humiliation if I regain it). I'm healthier, and so much happier. I have more confidence. But now - that the initial weight is gone - I'm frustrated because I can't seem to find satisfaction in healthy first, hot body second. I want both. And kind of the hot part more.

It's time for a reality check. Last night, as I was flipping around I landed on Jessica Simpson's interview on Oprah. For the record - I'm not a huge fan of either star, but this show was really interesting - and I have to admit I see JS in a new, more positive way.

Remember the "fat jeans"?

She's not fat, (said she's a size 4) she just chose an ugly outfit. Here's the thing, probably about 90% of women aged 16-50 working in Hollywood are size 0's, making the 4's of the world look larger. (Thankfully, in the robust Midwest of Chicago a size 4 = size 0, so at a size 8 or 10 I'm like a 4 or a 6.) But look at her. That's NOT fat. She's not a stick, but is a stick ideal?

Anyway, this was the outfit that put Ms. Simpson on the cover of every magazine from here to Timbuktu and pretty much changed her life and made her stronger. She was inspired to travel the world (entourage of BFF hair dude and BFF assistant in tow) and learn about beauty on a global scale. In France, the group met with an anorexic former model who was so delicate and sick it was shocking and absolutely heart-breaking. I was impressed that Jessica signed herself up for this. Her honesty and reaction to the situation was refreshing and authentic...overshadowing my previous take on her - a blonde bimbo who doesn't understand Chicken of the Sea.

So I was actually inspired to try to step back from aiming for perfection and try to find the things I do like - and work on focusing on them more.

And really - it all comes down to how you present yourself.

Things my mom taught me that help you look better no matter your size:
Just because it zips, doesn't mean it looks good.
Just because the color is pretty doesn't mean the cut is.
Just because dressing younger makes you feel younger doesn't mean it makes you look younger.
Just because you fit into clothes at Forever 21 doesn't mean you should shop there.
Never wear a wind suit. Ever.
Pastel colored suits are rarely a do...proceed with caution.
A little lipstick helps. Make that a new lipstick.
Just because it's the grocery store doesn't mean you shouldn't put on actual shoes, pants, bra.
Well-fitting undergarments are the foundation for success.
Red-heads go gray last, but when they do - they should either dye it, or move away for a year.
It's important to care what you look like, and important to "let go" of what you can't control.
(Thanks Mom)

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