Beauty by Diane PerkinsKiki’s blog about her scar got me thinking about beauty, our quest for it, our yearning for it. The amount women spend on beauty products of all sorts must be a brazillion dollars a year. I know I spend my fair share and more on skin care products, make-up, shampoos and conditioner, hair color. We diet endlessly for that elusive perfect figure (some of our Noodlers are depriving themselves of food at this very minute, so we can look ravishing at the RWA Awards ceremony in July). Some women even endure face lifts and tummy tucks and other cosmetic surgeries to reach some ideal.
My own face hasn’t fallen far enough yet for a lift, but a tummy tuck is a tempting idea...Naw. Too scary. Besides those things cost money. Not that I skimp on myself. I purchase the most expensive skin care products that Avon sells. I get my hair cut at Vidal Sassoon. I’ve been known to drop a bundle on make-up. I even ordered Bare Minerals from TV (it’s a good product!). When my husband shops at Best Buy, I go into Ulta and troll the aisles looking for that magic potion to give me-----Beauty.
I’ve passed this on to my daughter, too. She also worries about her weight, about how far short she might fall from that elusive idea of beauty. But when I went to the city where she lives and was to meet her in the hotel lobby, she took my breath away as she walked toward me. I’m not sure she believed me when I told her how stunningly beautiful she looked.
We really should not have this emphasis on beauty. We ought to be less superficial and judge ourselves and others by our character. Are we “good people” should be the most important question we ask ourselves.
But, dang. I still want to be 20 pounds lighter, smoother of skin, thicker of hair, whiter of teeth, firmer of abdomen, thicker of eyelashes, smaller feet, taller, thinner waist, longer fingernails, younger…..
I’m totally caught up in this vanity, even if the most important question I ask myself is if I’m “good people.” And when I look at my women friends, I never think of them as anything but beautiful, even though they come in all shapes, sizes, colors, and ages, because they are so totally dear to me.
Still, studies have shown that our attraction to certain body types and other characteristics of beauty is a deep-seated, instinctual, survival-of-the-fittest sort of thing. Maybe that is why in books I want my heroines to be beautiful and my heroes to be handsome. Not A-number one perfect, maybe. A little imperfection makes them more human and easier to identify with. Not for me are pudgy heroines or nerdy heroes, though. I want that deep instinctual fantasy of beauty, love, and happily ever after.
Shall I provide examples?
You knew that was coming. My current hero, Gerard Butler
Timeless beauty, Vivian Leigh
My very first bookcover, the Mills & Boon edition of The Mysterious Miss M, got the hero and heroine just right!
But you can see from my Diane Perkins covers and Diane Gaston covers that the artists did a spectacular job of depicting my heroes and heroines!!
Cheers to all things bright and beautiful!