Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Beauty & Brains

I don't normally do this, but I ran across this Jezebel article while exploring my new discovery Twitter (yes, I am that late to the Twitter party), and I have an opinion about it that I want to share (maybe you will read it and have an opinion too and we can turn it into a discussion :))

In case you don't want to read the article now, I will give you the CliffsNotes version so you can follow along. There is a belief that for little girls to become well rounded ladies, adults must teach them to focus on everything but their looks. And that by paying mind and calling attention to the superficial beauty of little girls, we will give them a "complex". But the author of this article argues that this avoidance for discussing beauty with young girls is the very problem. By avoiding the topic, adults are molding little girls to believe that they have to be pretty OR smart... girlie (which is somehow synonymous with ditzy?) OR studious... interested in fashion OR interested in books. With never an AND in sight. 

My parents told me everyday that I was a beautiful little girl, but they also cultivated my mind, praised my many interests and pushed me to be the best version of myself. I now have them to thank that I am able to call myself a Ph.D. candidate at a prestigious school AND also have an outlet to let my creative and fashion obsessed juices flow. 

{"When girls are lauded for their other qualities, when they get support about their other interests, then attention for their appearance gets healthily integrated into the symphony of encouragement that all children need and deserve."}

So where do I stand on this matter? Well, when I was reading this article I began to wonder why I am quick to tell people that I am actively pursuing my Ph.D. in biomedical research, but I have yet to openly tell most people (even close friends) that I have finally started following a passion of mine and recently began a fashion blog.  Why am I worried that if any of my science peers "find out" about my said fashion blog they will think less of me, or believe that I am shallow? Why is it that little girls and big girls alike can't have both the books AND the beauty, an interest in science AND in reading Vogue cover to cover? And most importantly, what is the right way to go about cultivating this balance? 
I definitely do not have the answers to these questions, but they are going to be swimming about in my head in the coming days. Maybe I am part of the problem too. Maybe my fear of "coming out" as a fashion blogger to my science community is part of the barrier for little girls having both. 

{"Girls need role models who can share how to cope with the pressures of a looks-obsessed culture. And sometimes, they need role models who can show them that a passion for fashion isn't shallow, and that an interest in beauty can co-exist with a deep devotion to the life of the mind."}

What do you think? Were you encouraged to have BOTH? 
If you are currently a fashion blogger too, did you have a hard time telling your friends?
Share with me your stories on how to integrate your beauty AND brains.


  1. I have not told my friend that i started a fashion blog. I dont think they would understand why I'm doing this for. Anyway I don't care what other thinks,
    blogging about fashion makes me happy!
    thanks for you comment! Stay in touch!

  2. Thank you for the comments :) I defo found hard to tell people I write blog at first but gradually they found about it and i got positive response which motivated me to blog regularly. Will follow you. I hope you follow me back too. cheers.


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