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By Allison Boye
It seems that in today's increasingly superficial, hyper-critical society, women everywhere are facing perpetually diminishing self-esteem, especially when it comes to our bodies. The media too often show us how to find our flaws and hate ourselves, whether we long to straighten our disgusting curly hair or transform our shameful, pock-marked rear ends into buns of steel. Well, we women have held ourselves to ridiculous standards of beauty long enough, and these are just a few easy ways we can free ourselves from the tyranny, once and for all!
1. Recognize that curves are sexy! Just look at Catherine Zeta Jones; she is one of the most striking and successful women in the world, despite her corpulent and clearly flawed size 6 hips.
2. Remind yourself that all breasts can be beautiful, as long as you have the right brassiere that either pushes them up to your chin or smushes them down into painful submission. Only you can decide what shape is right for you and your body, though a surgeon can probably provide some good pointers.
3. Staying trim and healthy does not mean you can't enjoy sinfully delicious food. Treat yourself to some luscious stalks of crisp green celery. Or go carb crazy with a decadently wheat-filled saltine followed by a refreshing ice cube to suck on for dessert. Who says that dieting has to mean deprivation?
4. It is purely a myth that blondes have more fun, and Hollywood is finally starting to reflect that with the popularity of exotic starlets such as Nicole Kidman, Lindsay Lohan, Hillary Duff and Britney Spears. So take pride in your own beautiful brunette locks by playing them up with some chunky golden highlights!
5. Your natural, unadorned glow is just as lovely as your labor-intensive, night-on-the-town, painted hussy look. Just dab on some blush, mascara, lip gloss, and eyebrow gel, and of course some finishing powder to ward off shine, followed by a quick blow out of your hair, and you are ready for the gym!
6. Relax. That physical feature you have always loathed about yourself is probably only noticeable to you. Unless it's thick ankles. Or saddle bags. Or back fat. But you can easily disguise those flaws with leg warmers, prairie skirts, and smocked tunic tops.
7. Age and beauty are no longer mutually exclusive. Embrace the lifetime of experience and wisdom represented in your wrinkles and grey hair and follow the examples set by the eternally effortless and ageless beauty of Cher, Jane Fonda, Goldie Hawn and Joan Rivers. Better yet, with the advent of the miracle serum Botox, you can now wait until your early thirties for your first face lift!
8. Feeling worn out from a long day at work or taking care of the kids? Too tired to get yourself to your Pilates class? Don't feel guilty! Just take two classes tomorrow, or get up extra early to do 2500 bicep curls and squats with the gallon of milk in your refrigerator.
9. Remember - women are supposed to have a higher percentage of body fat than men; it's a biological fact. So your voluptuous 10 percent of jiggly, repulsive fat is as naturally beautiful as your smooth, sexy, hairless legs and bikini zone.
10. Stand naked in front of a full-length mirror and realize that you are perfect, just the way you are. If you need to dim the lights or drink a few vodka stingers first, that's not a bad idea.
Follow these simple guidelines and soon you will be looking your best, and more importantly, feeling at ease with yourself - the real you -- inside and out.
©2005 Allison P. Boye, Ph.D.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Allison Boye holds
an incredibly useful and valuable Ph.D. in English, having won numerous
scholarly awards and membership in the esteemed Phi Beta Kappa Honor Society.
She currently lives in Florida with her husband Jim and her dog Chloe,
who is the only female she knows who is perfectly content to walk around
naked in public.