Today’s society has created a certain expectation of the perfect image one must attain. This has led to people setting unrealistically high standards for themselves, which is especially the case with young women. The problem that arises when people are unable to live up to such expectations is the loss of confidence and the feeling of being rejected by society, both of which tend to lead to severe mental health issues, such as anxiety and depression. For most of their lives, women have been taught to compare themselves to one another, instead of respecting and honoring their individuality. Thankfully, times are changing and the fashion and beauty industries are changing with them. The focus is slowly shifting to acceptance and celebration of women’s natural beauty and the use of these industries’ products for true female empowerment.
Beauty as a way of enhancing self-esteem
When we are bombarded with hundreds of idealized images of women every day, it can be quite difficult to look in a mirror and remain unaffected. However, what we really need to do is learn to define our self-image based on our own criteria of beauty, instead of the ones imposed on us by our culture. You need to take a long, hard look at yourself and realize what it is about your physical features you like the most, and then focus on enhancing those. Use makeup to your advantage. Never try to hide your natural beauty with a mask of heavy makeup; rather, use it as a tool to highlight the most attractive aspects of your face. When you start feeling more beautiful on the outside, you will soon realize just how quickly your confidence can grow and how your inner beauty shines with it. If, however, you are unable to focus on anything but your flaws, perhaps a makeover would be a brilliant idea. Try changing your beauty routine or getting a new haircut which frames your face in a beautiful way. A smile is arguably the most attractive feature any of us have, so why not take better care of it. If it is stained teeth that are bothering you, get them whitened. If they are crooked, try an impactful invisalign treatment. Only when you devote more attention to accepting yourself, can you truly let your power and confidence shine.
Fashion as a form of self-empowerment
The true power fashion holds is the ability of empowering us both inside and out. Not only do our personal style and the clothes we choose to wear affect our mood, but they affect our overall confidence as well. We have all dressed up for a special occasion or wore an impactful suit to a business meeting at some point in our lives, and then realized that we hold ourselves differently, walk with more confidence, and even interact with people in a different way. The truth is, when we put on a piece of clothing, we subconsciously adopt traits and characteristics which are associated with it. But the clothing we wear don’t just affect us, they significantly influence the way other people perceive us as well. That is why it is crucial to devote some time to discovering your personal style. To feel more strong and beautiful, you must think about fashion every day and only put on clothes that give you confidence and power. Once you make your own rules, realize what works best for you and what makes you feel great about yourself, there is no denying you will truly look and feel like a superwoman.
The ethics of fashion are a feminist issue
As members at the end of the fashion chain, we often tend to focus solely on ourselves and the impact clothing has on our well-being, but we rarely take a moment to ask ourselves where our clothes actually come from and how they are made. In most cases, on the other side of the world, another woman, not much different than us, made the clothes we wear; but her voice was suppressed and disempowered in the process. She worries whether she will get a fair pay, if she will be harassed, or if she will be safe in her workplace. To truly empower ourselves, we must also empower women like these by doing everything in our power to only support conscious and ethical clothing brands and make sure no woman gets abused in the process.