What is Beauty?
By Yvonne F. Conte
To be looked upon as lovely; to be admired and desired; to acquire near perfection as a woman – this is beautiful.
Think of the women in your life who have influenced you most. Who caused you to think, pushed you to take action? What makes her beautiful? Is it the symmetry of her face? Do you think about her weight, her height, or the clearness of her skin? Is it her hourglass figure, the fullness of her lips, or the thickness and shine of her hair that showcases her beauty? Or is she beautiful simply because of the way she thinks, the way she acts, or the kindness she shows? Do you ever look upon her and think: “I admire the way she lives her life”? This is what builds beauty in a woman. Beauty is the way a woman conducts herself in times of trouble, the way she holds her family together, and the way that she loves.
Certainly, the superficial definition of beauty stands true. We are attracted to women who are pleasing to the eye – this is simply a fact. But that kind of beauty fades, and what is sexy or attractive to one may not be to another. In China, men were historically attracted to women with tiny feet. While African men desired women with large discs in their lips, men of Shakespearean times loved women with large bottoms and hips. The standard of beauty changes with time. One thing, however, stands the test of time and culture: beauty from within. A woman’s ability to show compassion and kindness comes from within her heart, shining as beautifully as the first flower on a spring day. This will never fade.
I have a daughter, and she is amazingly beautiful. Her skin is creamy white, and her hair is the color of autumn. She stands tall and curvaceous with a brilliant smile. But this isn’t what makes her beautiful. I’ve watched how she loves her husband and her three children. I’ve noticed how she gives effortlessly and generously to her friends, family, and strangers. I’ve seen how compassionate she is about people who are being persecuted. I’ve watched her cry for the pain of someone she’s never met. This is why she is beautiful.
Look at the women in your life whose beauty you admire. Take note of the beauty that they will carry with them long after their hair turns grey and their skin begins to age. That is true beauty; that is eternal.
To be looked upon as lovely; to be admired and desired; to acquire near perfection as a woman – this is beautiful. This is what makes our world just a little bit lovelier.
Yvonne F. Conte was runner-up for the “Beauty in My Eyes” writing contest, a contest created to celebrate women and their beauty in conjunction with “Be True to You 2012.”