April 18, 2013

Dove Real Beauty Sketches

I noticed a lot of people were posting this week on their Facebook pages about these "Dove Real Beauty Sketches" videos on YouTube.  It seemed to me that it was mostly women were posting about these videos and everyone seemed really touched by it. I finally checked it out yesterday and it moved me to tears.

The story behind these videos is there is a Forensic Artist who had these random regular women come in and sit behind a sheet so he couldn't see them. One at a time, he began to talk to the individual woman he would be drawing and asked that they describe themselves to him. He asked them to explain to him the shape of their face, their hair, their features and how they looked to themselves. Each woman seemed to do the same thing and focused on their imperfections. A lot of them pointed out the features they didn't like about themselves and didn't speak highly about their features at all. It was really kind of sad.

Once the artist completed his drawings of the individual woman who described themselves to him, he called in the other women who interacted with them before the drawing and he would ask these other women to describe the individual he just drew and each and every time the other person speaking about them would say kind things about how they looked. The ladies being drawn who described themselves having "big chins" or "dark circles" were re-described to the artist by these other women as having "soft features", "a kind smile", "nice hair" and other really kind things.

At the end of that the artist would put his two drawings next to each other and hang them in this huge empty room where the drawings had taken place. The first picture was always the way the woman had described herself and the second picture was of how that woman was described to him from other women's point of views.

It was amazing to see the difference between the two pictures. Watching the women who were drawn see themselves in these two different drawings of themselves was really something. The artist had them describe what they saw was the difference between the two portraits he created of them and one of them women was even crying.

Check out the video below to see this amazing experiment:

I couldn't help but get sad after seeing this. Why are we so hard on ourselves as women? We are our worst critics. We are obsessed with being perfect, looking perfect and staying flawless that we forget to look in the mirror and admire the beautiful things about ourselves. I have to say that I think a lot of it is our cultures fault. The media can't stress enough how we should stay young, thin and wrinkle free forever by comparing us to celebrities with abnormal lifestyles. It just doesn't seem fair we have this kind of pressure on our shoulders when there are so many other things so much more important than how we look.

It's time to get our confidence back and to stop being so hard on ourselves. We're all beautiful in our own ways and it's time to start recognizing that within ourselves and teaching our daughters the same.
I challenge all of you to do this for yourselves. When you say out loud that your ugly, fat, and unattractive, those bad thoughts and words really settle harshly inside of yourselves and you continue to believe it and continue to say it and it's just a vicious, destructive cycle. Practice saying kind things about yourself and you'll start to feel so much better about yourself.

I'm curious to see what it'd be like if they did this same experiment with men. Would it be similar or would it be completely opposite??? Either way it really had me thinking. I think it'd be interesting to see the similarities and differences.

I'd really love to hear your thoughts on this and perspectives. While I could go on about this subject forever, I think it'd be more interesting to hear your thoughts.

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