Something that bothers me with the times, especially here lately, is all the presumptuousness and self-entitlement running rampant in our society. I know I should be the last to talk as a millennial but I have said before, I’m not every millennial. What’s bugging me today are the perpetuating bars of beauty that the media creates in the everlasting crusade to make money. The so-called “standards” that very few create to measure many. I’m talking about the Myth of the Most Beautiful. The title is about as concrete as air and validated, at best, on very limited, biased and shaky criteria.
Presently there’s contention on who truly holds the keys to the most beautiful woman in the selection of two concurrently holding the title: Beyonce and Florence Colgate. The USA picked Beyonce (which caused an uproar) and the UK chose Florence Colgate and decided to legitimize their selection with scientific measures. It’s not really a question of who is more beautiful, but where did the media-at-large get off presuming that they can decide this at all? Beauty is subjective, and it can be, all it wants, it just can’t be a mandate on behalf of anyone outside of oneself . Here’s the definition of subjective taken from Merriam-Webster 4th definition:
Or as the adage says “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder”. Now I suppose that Colgate is suppose to be more legitimate because it was based on “classical” measurements of symmetry. My rebuttal is this: so Colgate, an 18-year old white woman,is the only woman that the UK could yield with symmetric features? Were there no women of color with symmetrical features? Older women? I’ll answer my own question and say no Colgate is not the only woman that the UK could yield with symmetrical features just the one that these ”scientists” chose (that’s called bias). If they..no if anyone were actually interested in answering this question, they would be locked in debating over criteria alone for years. As far as the Beyonce claim……..in the end it’s all good business.
All this is not to imply that these women are not beautiful, just not the most beautiful and not because they miss some mark or lack an attribute (like symmetry *snore*) but just because there’s no way to come to a consensus on beauty. It is what it is to each person and that definition is going to change from person to person, culture to culture, etc. For instance, in my eyes, Angelina Jolie easily trumps Colgate, Halle Berry trumps Beyonce, and Lucy Liu over them all for being 44 years old and looking younger than all of them.
Essentially the Most Beautiful Myth needs to be left to the fairy tales and discarded in practicality since it causes more problems than anything else. Let’s not forget the “scientist” that decided to make a project out why Black Women were the least attractive women on the planet. The saddest part of all this is number of people that have and will subscribe themselves to the opinions of the few in hopes of receiving validation.
I do not like this because I’m thinking of all the little girls growing up this media/social driven society who feel like they have look like these women to be considered beautiful. The “standard” is slanted steeply in favor of European features which leaves an entire 6 continents of human features teetering on the other end…..unduly leaving out many women for consideration and warping the minds of girls coming up.
Okay I get it, it’s all business: a way for magazines to get off the rack. But it is my hope that women in general are taking these titles with a grain of salt but especially with regards to their daughters, more so for the girls of color. Teach them love themselves and define themselves for themselves.