5 Things I Learned When I Began Investing In My Appearance

5 Things I Learned When I Began Investing In My Appearance

It's not as simple as putting on a cute top.
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I was sitting in the car with my roommate as we journeyed out to her grandmothers house when she brought up our appearances. "Yasmeen," she said, "we really need to start focusing on what we look like so we can feel better about ourselves." At the time, I had nodded and smiled, brushing her suggestion off in my head because I knew myself and I knew that I'd never really tried anything special with my appearance. I hadn't even worn makeup to my senior prom and I wore a dress I'd owned for months. Her suggestion just didn't make sense to me. Later that day, I was searching in my closet, sifting through clothes (mind you, I was just looking for that one really comfortable sweater I loved) when I realized that maybe it was time to start investing in my appearance. High school me would have thrown up at the idea, her obvious self-esteem issues being the biggest block in the road to looking good. But college me jumped up and down at the idea, and since then, I've started focusing on looking and feeling good. In honor of that, here's five things I learned when I began investing in my appearance.

1. It’s difficult.

My new rule for myself is that I invest in my hair, face, or outfit everyday. Let me tell you- it sucks. It’s hard to twist my thick and unruly hair into some DIY hairdo that Pinterest shoves in my face. It’s hard to apply eyeliner when I know that one wing is going to look like it’s ready to fly off into the sky whilst the other is a symbolic messy metaphor for my life. And it’s definitely hard to realize that apparently, you can’t wear white after labor day (I question who the hell came up with that one…). I mean, really, I have no idea what I'm doing when I hold a makeup brush to my face and mess around with foundation. But hey, that's the fun of it, right?


2. I have no idea what my style is.

Am I boho-chic? Hipster? Casual? What do my clothes say about my style inspiration? Sure, I love looking at Perrie Edwards and wanting all her clothing, but does my style reflect that? It’s hard to figure out what kind style I gravitate towards because I usually just wear anything that makes me feel happy and comfortable. Does the fact that I own a lot of black clothing mean that I have a grungier sense of style? Or do the floral, loose fitting blouses indicate that I'm more boho than I though? Who the hell knows.

3. I’m really not dressing up for anyone but myself.

I promise. Most often when men and women decide to dress themselves up it’s inferred that they are dressing up for another person. What happened to rocking a smokey eye because you felt like it?! Are we really that behind, people? Yes, there will be times in life when your outfit and your appearance will be specifically put together for other people, and yes, that’s okay. There have definitely been times where I put on a specific top because I knew that really loved it. But I promise you, I usually want to wear the clothes I wear because I think I look cute in them.

4. I had to learn to take a compliment- from both myself and others.

When I started to wear makeup more frequently and really put together my outfits, other people noticed. My friends would comment on a lipstick shade I was wearing or how I had braided my hair. And that, to me, was downright scary. It helped me realize that when people had been looking before and had complimented me on a part of my body, they had actually meant it. If people only compliment you when you're all made up, it doesn't really mean anything. It became easier to hear compliments because I realized that I was just as beautiful without any work done to my appearance. But just because I let other people compliment me, didn't mean it was as easy to compliment myself. Looking in the mirror and saying something nice about yourself sounds easy, but it felt like climbing an uphill mountain. I felt like I was hyping myself up just to say I liked the way a pair of jeans looked on my body. But it all became worth it when I felt better for saying it.

5. I feel really good.

I do. Believe me. Whether investing in your appearance means a full face of makeup or wearing a nice blouse, let me tell you- you shine. Though your outer appearance is not as important as what’s inside (I feel like I’ve quoted every cheesy Pinterest board at this point), feeling confident on the outside will help you feel confident on the inside. And hey, if you can feel confidence in ways other than your appearance, good for you! Really, the point of it all is to feel happy and confident, regardless of where you find it.

Cover Image Credit: Penn State

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30 Things I'd Rather Be Than 'Pretty'

Because "pretty" is so overrated.
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Nowadays, we put so much emphasis on our looks. We focus so much on the outside that we forget to really focus on what matters. I was inspired by a list that I found online of "Things I Would Rather Be Called Instead Of Pretty," so I made my own version. Here is a list of things that I would rather be than "pretty."

1. Captivating

I want one glance at me to completely steal your breath away.

2. Magnetic

I want people to feel drawn to me. I want something to be different about me that people recognize at first glance.

3. Raw

I want to be real. Vulnerable. Completely, genuinely myself.

4. Intoxicating

..and I want you addicted.

5. Humble

I want to recognize my abilities, but not be boastful or proud.

6. Exemplary

I want to stand out.

7. Loyal

I want to pride myself on sticking out the storm.

8. Fascinating

I want you to be hanging on every word I say.

9. Empathetic

I want to be able to feel your pain, so that I can help you heal.

10. Vivacious

I want to be the life of the party.

11. Reckless

I want to be crazy. Thrilling. Unpredictable. I want to keep you guessing, keep your heart pounding, and your blood rushing.

12. Philanthropic

I want to give.

13. Philosophical

I want to ask the tough questions that get you thinking about the purpose of our beating hearts.

14. Loving

When my name is spoken, I want my tenderness to come to mind.

15. Quaintrelle

I want my passion to ooze out of me.

16. Belesprit

I want to be quick. Witty. Always on my toes.

17. Conscientious

I want to always be thinking of others.

18. Passionate

...and I want people to know what my passions are.

19. Alluring

I want to be a woman who draws people in.

20. Kind

Simply put, I want to be pleasant and kind.

21. Selcouth

Even if you've known me your whole life, I want strange, yet marvelous. Rare and wondrous.

22. Pierian

From the way I move to the way I speak, I want to be poetic.

23. Esoteric

Do not mistake this. I do not want to be misunderstood. But rather I'd like to keep my circle small and close. I don't want to be an average, everyday person.

24. Authentic

I don't want anyone to ever question whether I am being genuine or telling the truth.

25. Novaturient

..about my own life. I never want to settle for good enough. Instead I always want to seek to make a positive change.

26. Observant

I want to take all of life in.

27. Peart

I want to be honestly in good spirits at all times.

28. Romantic

Sure, I want to be a little old school in this sense.

29. Elysian

I want to give you the same feeling that you get in paradise.

30. Curious

And I never want to stop searching for answers.
Cover Image Credit: Favim

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13 Taylor Swift Lyrics About Love

“We could get married. Have 10 kids and teach em how to dream."

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Taylor Swift is the only reason I've gotten through every love, and every break-up. Here's a list of 13 lyrics/quotes about love from Taylor Swift's albums.

“Losing him was blue like I’ve never known. Missing him was dark grey all alone. Forgetting him was like trying to know somebody you never met. Loving him was red.”

"Red" from the album "Red." This song perfectly describes every feeling that radiates through your entire being when you love and then lose someone.

“I wish we could go back, and remember what we were fighting for. I wish you knew that, I miss you too much to be mad anymore. I wish you were right here, right now, it’s all good. I wish you would.”

"I Wish You Would" from 1989. Sometimes I wish it was acceptable to just blast Taylor Swift during an argument because I totally would.

“You learn my secrets and you figure out why I’m guarded. You say we’ll never make my parents mistake.”

"Mine" from Speak Now. Let's surpass everyone's expectations.

“My baby’s fly like a jet stream, high above the whole scene, loves me like I’m brand new.” 

"Call It What You Want To" from the Reputation album. Once in a lifetime, there's someone who looks at your scars and calls you strong and brave, instead of damaged.

“My mother accused me of losing my mind, but I swore I was fine.” 

"Dear John" from Speak now. Love makes you do crazy things.

“One night he wakes, strange look on his face. Pauses then says ‘you’re my best friend’. And you knew what it was. He is in love.” 

"You Are In Love" from the 1989 album. Swift gives me chills with this song. Every time you think you're in love, you realize that the last time wasn't even close. True love, happens once or twice, and not for everyone.

“You pull my chair out, and help me in. And you don’t know how nice that is, but I do. And you throw your head back laughing like a little kid. I think it’s strange that you think I’m funny cause, he never did. I’ve been spending the last eight months, thinking all love ever does is break, and burn, and end. But on a Wednesday, in a cafe, I watched it begin again.”

"Begin Again" from the Red album. One of my top five favorite songs. Real love shows you how you should've been treated all along.

“Why would you wanna make the very first scar? Why would you wanna break a perfectly good heart?”

"A Perfectly Good Heart" from the first Taylor Swift album. Some people are only here to take. Never to give or share.

“The rain came pouring down, when I was drowning that’s when I cold finally breathe. And by morning, gone was any trace of you, I think I am finally clean.”

'Clean' from 1989. It can take years, even lifetimes, to finally feel free from love.

“There I was again tonight, forcing laughter, faking smiles, same old tired lonely place. Walls of insincerity, shifting eyes and vacancy, vanished when I saw your face. All I can say is it was, enchanting to meet you.”

'Enchanted' from Speak Now album. Love at first sight?

“Romeo take me somewhere we can be alone, I’ll be waiting all that’s left to do is run. You’ll be the prince and I’ll be the princess, it’s a love story, baby just say yes.”

'Love Story' from Fearless album. This song makes me want to take a chance and escape with a stranger.

“I once was poison ivy, but now I’m your daisy.”

"Don't Blame Me" from Reputation. I'm only better when I'm with you.

“We could get married. Have 10 kids and teach em how to dream.”

"Starlight" from the Red album. Only certain people are worth growing with.

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