Karen Gonzales

© Copyright 2024 by Karen Gonzales

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What Is someone's definition of beauty; a pretty, pleasing face to look at with a well-kept body or is it someone who's kind-hearted and has inner peace?

It is all the above, especially in America.

Here are the attributes that make us American's beautiful:

Tanned skin: popularized by the 1920's and by the 1960's it was because it meant you had the time-and the money-to travel. Before that tanned skin was frowned upon because it meant you did manual labor outside; therefore, you had low status. Pale skin indicated high status because you could work indoors.

Very white teeth: the whiter the better. By the year 2017, 39 million people used teeth whiteners. People also want their teeth to be straight. Over the past 20 year's orthodontic work has doubled. The most attractive expression is a smiling face. According to other countries American's smile too much.

Plump lips: which denotes sensuality and apparently men look at it as a sign that women are excited about having sex.

Being thin: even though obesity had reached an all-time high in 2016, It is still an aspiration.

Makeup: to enhance your features and conceal imperfections. Apparently, other countries feel American's wear too much. I feel all women look better with makeup if applied correctly.

Most American's dress casually now a days, which is the norm. It's attractive to look and feel comfortable. Of course, it is not attractive to look sloppy or to look like you just don't care.

A lot of men like women in heels; it denotes female sexuality.

Blonde hair is the preferred hair color that both men and women find attractive (on women). Only 2 percent of women are natural blondes.

Manicures and all-around grooming: again, other countries don't understand this concept.

Overall if someone likes your appearance, they treat you better. I feel it's better to feel and be beautiful for yourself.

Books; equals intelligence. People find that holding an intellible conversation to be attractive. It also makes you more interesting to be around.

Last, but not least, a person who has a good personality, mannerisms, confidence, and even someone who can put themselves together well can appear more attractive.

Everyone has their own preferences what they consider beautiful. Take other countries for example; they consider what is attractive a little or a lot differently than we do.

China: they like a pale, flawless complexion as do their counterparts; Ireland, Scotland, England and Korea.

France, Italy, and Russia also prefer natural beauty. Russia also likes stature and slimness.

India likes gorgeous hair.

Sweden focuses on prominent cheekbones, blonde hair and blue eyes.

Spain: sensuality; Germany: sporty and hardworking.

The ones that American's differentiate the most from is Tajikistan— they like unibrows.

Africa: long forehead, Japan: crooked teeth, Mauritania prefers their women with excess weight, as does Guana. Ethiopia: scars, Iran: rhinoplasty, New Zealand: tattoos, Korea: a nice heart-shaped face.

Quite a few Brazilians, as well as Americans like a curvy woman.

Models, and especially supermodels of yesteryear had to be thin. Now, the average model is curvaceous because most women, especially American women are so. We basically want to see "ourselves" on the runway and in print ads for glossy magazines. We want the models of today to be relatable. The manufacturers also want this so they can sell more product.

Alot of people strive for perfection, that's where plastic surgery comes in. A plastic surgeon is not your "fairy godmother." Some do surgeries that aren't absolutely vital. That's why the t.v. show Botched is so popular. Beverly Hills/Hollywood is the capital of plastic surgery in America.

And of course, theirs's people that want to look like certain celebrities whom they deem as being "perfect looking." People feel if they look like a celebrity, they will have their lifestyle and all the perks that come with it.

People need to seek professional help for their "inner demons", a therapist, not a plastic surgeon.

Imperfection is beauty. Imperfect features are more interesting to look at.

Some people focus too much on their outward appearance. Some don't focus any. Which is worse? I think both scenarios are wrong. There should be a happy medium.

Apparently, someone who doesn't care at all about their appearance, well, theirs's several reasons: they are lazy, they don't have the income to spend on makeup, nice clothes, good quality skin care as well as other things to care for themselves. Then there are people who don't put any focus on outward beauty, they just focus on inner beauty.

I know when I look the best I can, I feel more confident, and I want people to know I love myself enough to take the time to "put myself together." As the saying goes If you don't love yourself, you can't love someone else.

I've always struggled with so-called beauty. I was burned on one side of my face when I was 5-weeks old by a coffee pot that fell off an imbalanced stove that my mom put me in front of to keep me warm. She wasn't thinking. I've suffered for that misjudgment all my life. People (especially kids) don't like other people to look different from them. Obviously, they told me I was ugly (and I stupidly believed them). They made cruel jokes and had snide comments at my expense.

I'm over that now, at the age of 53, but I think that's the reason I try to look the best I can when going out. I'm not consumed by my looks, I go to the laundromat, hiking, post office —anything close by without makeup on.

I've been told later in life, after cosmetic surgery and reaching my teen years and adult years that I'm attractive. Some days I feel that way and some days I don't. I think a lot of women can relate.

I also exercise, eat right, meditate, exfoliate, moisturize, color my hair blonde and drink plenty of water. I do it for myself, but I'm also doing it for that shy, insecure, mistreated little girl that still resides within me. Probably to also give certain people the proverbial finger. I'm not going to allow anyone to make me feel ugly ever again.

It is up to the individual to decide their self-worth and do what it takes to make themselves feel beautiful. (Or not)

No one should judge someone else. Beauty is subjective.

We should build each other up, not tear each other down. The people that do so are insecure and just want to feel better about themselves. Is it competition or just cruelty?

We do need confidence and good self-esteem to deal with the everyday obstacles' life hurls at us.

Let's all take a good hard look in the mirror. The person you see looking back at you is the one you need to impress. It doesn't matter at the end of the day what anyone else thinks. Do it for you. Like Coco Chanel said, "Beauty begins the moment you decide to be yourself."


I started writing poetry in my late teens.  I fell in love with literature when I was introduced to Shakespeare in freshmen English class.  And then I moved up to stories when I was in my forties.  I have been published on Short Story Lovers for my story titled: "Treatment in the Workplace."

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