Closer to God No More

Guest Post by Lita Smith, Future White House Press Secretary

3 LancomeThe issue that the U.K. regulators had with this Lancôme ad was that it was overly Photoshopped. Therefore it was a wildly exaggerated portrayal of the product’s effects when used. My issue with this ad is that, like all beauty ads, it gives the audience their idea of perfection. This perfection is completely unattainable. The models in their ads do not even look like the perfection they portray, their image is displayed after extensive ‘airbrushing.’ And yet people in today’s culture still have an obsession with looking flawless, and will go to grave lengths and spends ridiculous amounts of money to do so.

I am no saint when it comes to this. I own my fair share of cosmetic products and have had some microdermabration treatments and spray tans in my life. I have done all this and purchased all this in my own desire to achieve attractiveness. I was born and raised in Dallas, TX, a city commonly known as the “want-to-be Beverly Hills.” We have salons and Starbucks at just about every street corner and just as many gyms to match. Beauty is of the utmost importance and women, as well as men, will not stop until they have achieved it.

I can remember when I first moved to Milwaukee; I immediately saw a difference in the way people dressed and presented them selves. Maybe it was just because I was in a big college city, or it was because I was in the Midwest, but the apparent difference in one’s attitude about their appearance was more relaxed and sensible. The women here do not wear tiny skirts to class with heels and their hair styled to perfection. The men do not look like they could be body builders and everyone seems to be perfectly fine with it. They all find one another relatively attractive.

At first, I was very apprehensive to change my style and my own way of dressing, but as the years rolled on I realized that superficial looks could be just as unattractive as not putting any care into your appearance. So now, I think I have found a ‘healthy’ balance between the two. I no longer wear as much make up as I did in Dallas (just mascara and a hint of blush on occasion). My shoes are no longer high enough to bring me closer to God. I do not tease my hair anymore and I allow its natural curl to show more often then not. I still work out a ton and my obsession with clothes has not ceased to exist. But I have a better sense of my own confidence. And as advertising major I can appreciate the beauty in a model or actress but I also understand that their pictures are not always real. They did not just wake up and show up to the Oscars. They had to prepare hours ahead of time. And I have neither the time nor the urge.

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