Beauty & Brains
Grab your favorite drink, because it is *Tea Time*.
It is currently 3 am and my damn brain does not let me sleep because it is busy thinking about a topic I wanted to share my thoughts with you for a while now: Beauty & Brains (oh how appropriate for the situation right now).
As a female entrepreneur, there are many challenges along the way and one that stuck with me consistently over the years is the judgment of my intelligence & skills because of my outer appearance. I am 100% sure most women struggle with this, because there is still this fucked up notion in so many
heads, that if you look pretty, if you love Makeup or fashion, if you are proud of your body and like to show it off, you must be stupid as hell… because intelligent women care for more “important” stuff than that. Just thinking about that makes me roll my eyes!
I know a lot of my Superwoman friends developed early on the same behaviour as I did: Explaining myself even in shorter conversations by expressing, that I am “more” than just what people see from the outside … which is absolutely ridiculous and I am going to share with you how I overcame the need to do that.
So many still underestimate all the things a woman can be at the same time. Yes, a woman can put on glam makeup and wear a sexy dress while having a doctors degree and discussing economics or politics with you. Yes, a woman can have a bomb ass body and show it off in a million photos and then get back to coding the next super successful app or her work as an engineer at NASA. And there is absolutely no discrepancy here.
Caring for your outer appearance and enhancing certain features has been routed in our culture since hundreds of thousands of years.
When you think back to the Egyptian era you might remember that Cleopatra wore that famous makeup, was very much into beauty in general and is rumored to bathe in milk & honey regularly to keep her skin soft. She is also known for her superior intelligence, which made her one of the most powerful women in history and improved her country’s standing and economy.
Yes, we live in a time where you get bombarded with the mass ideal of beauty on every corner, every second. But painting your lips red does not equal you gave into the pressure of modern society. It means using the tools out there to create your own idea of beauty for yourself, to express your personality or creativity. You take bits and pieces of all the impressions around you and put it together kinda like your own personality-puzzle as you develop your style.
Most women I know, who have awesome careers, have a very defined style but still do not define themselves through their looks. When you talk to them for a minute you are blown away by their eloquence, humor, and knowledge – and might be ashamed of yourself that you even considered for a second putting them into a category because they look so stunning.
It took quite a while for me to accept that we’ll be judged all everyday day by what I put out there from myself visually (even when I wish it wasn’t like that). I tried fighting this with explaining myself all the time. For example when a guy came up to me to make me a compliment like “You are beautiful” I was ashamed to just accept it and thank him for it. Most of the time my response was “Well, that’s not really what is most important about me but thanks anyway.”
With more experiences comes change and at some point, I developed enough self-esteem to accept compliments and see them as what they are: Just some nice words, not an indirect diss to my intelligence.
Not everyone will get to know me better to see that this is not the most interesting thing about me, and that is totally fine. I only care about the ones that spend some of their time getting to know the real me (no, the whole me) behind the makeup, black dresses, and sarcastic remarks. This makes life so much easier if you have a similar behavior. Just separating things that are said (or not said) from the importance of the situation, and accepting that you can be both – pretty & bad ass intelligent – and that it is not a contradiction to combine both. In fact, it makes you unstoppable, the female Jackpot, a femme fatale.
‘SO embrace it in all facets because everyone who does not look behind the facade misses out big time.