Beauty News: America The Beautiful

America The Beautiful is a new documentary that dares to ask the (somewhat obvious) question "Does America have an unhealthy obsession with beauty?" And, for that matter, what is beauty? And, who decides?
The documentary centers around an adolescent model who, at the age of 14, got labeled "obese" via fashion-industry standards. If you can even fathom this, her 6-foot tall, size 4 frame was just too much to meet international modeling standards. Ouch. The movie uses her story to launch a frank examination of such pleasant topics as "plastic surgery, a female casino employee who was fired for not wearing makeup and thought-provoking parallels between women's gains in society and society's offsetting emphasis on current ideals of beauty and other notions of femininity."

The film is opening nationwide in large cities and will be coming to others. It has already opened in New York to somewhat mixed reviews.

The question of beauty standards in America and most of the industrialized world is something that many of us feel conflicted about. For as much time as I spend working on this blog, I probably spend twice as much time ruminating about whether or not I am re-inforcing unobtainable and largely damaging beauty ideals. And, on some level, I'm sure that I am. On the other hand, I've never felt that my personal "beauty philosophy" is centered on one look or attainment of perfection. Instead, I look at this blog as a way of sharing my experiences experimenting with different products, looks, and ideas to create something that is uniquely mine. Perhaps this is frank rationalization. It probably is, but like I said, I'm working through it in therapy.



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