Article to Read – Age & Beauty

Aug 27, 2013

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“True beauty outwits its own fallibility. Don’t misunderstand me. There’s something fantastic about the beauty of youth – the spectacle of a new person suddenly arriving at their physical peak.  And we can celebrate that happy accident for what it is: a case of time and nature working pleasingly to an individual’s advantage.  But beauty in youth requires nothing of the possessor.  It is only later that we expect the woman to step in, to take over, to augment that initial, guileless attractiveness with something deeper: confidence, instinct, self-knowledge, style, upon which lasting beauty depends.  You can love a young woman for her freshness but you love her more when that freshness comes from a sense of promise.” – Andrew O’Hagan in “Laws of Attraction” found in Fall 2013 New York Times Style Magazine

The objectification of young girls who are accidentally blessed to fit the definition of our youth obsessed culture can be ultimately misled, and potentially destroyed if they are led to believe that looks are all they have to offer.

Andrew O’Hagan in his article “Laws of Attraction” found in the Fall 2013 NY Times Style magazine focuses on the topic of true beauty, and how sadly much of America, and thus women who’ve bought into it the notion of looks being paramount; thereby ignoring the power of intelligence and curiosity have done themselves a disservice.

Bringing up the French, he points out that “true beauty is not built to diminish, but to mature” and by respecting our bodies and how they change as we gain years we become more interesting, we become more mysterious, we become more self-assured because we choose to work with our bodies and our minds rather than fight against them. And because we see time as an opportunity to become wiser, more understanding of ourselves and the world, we thus become ever more attractive. Comically, yet spot-on he states, “Only with stupid men does a woman’s intelligence count against her.”

The only reason to fear aging is when we realize we haven’t spent the time cultivating anything beyond our looks. We much choose to always strengthen our mind, become more knowledgeable of the world we are curious about and living in as well as constantly respectful of our bodies and presence. Style is something which is a choice that one cultivates and embodies each and every day. And true beauty as defined above coupled with style is a magnificent unbeatable pairing.

I strongly encourage you to read this article and share your thoughts either below in the comments or on Facebook. After all, what we value, we perpetuate. And if we blindly continue to value only beauty rather than the intelligence that we can discover only if we look past what initially attracted us, we become part of the problem. I don’t know about you but I want my niece and nephew and my students to grow up in a world that values their mind as much, and even more so, than their exterior. I look forward to hearing your thoughts.

~While an exotic beauty in her youth, Diane von Furstenberg has used her business savvy, charm and wit to exude even more beauty in her prime than her days at Studio 54 could ever have matched.~


images: (1) New York Times Style Mag Fall 2013 (2) source  (3) source

5 thoughts on “Article to Read – Age & Beauty

    1. It’s funny. As I was reading the article in the actual magazine, I kept looking at the images and was perplexed by their pairing with the words as well. One thing to keep in mind is that the author doesn’t always have a say in the pictures that are chosen. Beyond that, bravo on the article, no comment on the choice of pics. 😉

  1. I really enjoyed this article. I printed it out as a “keeper.” I can get past the photos/content issue easily because I choose to *focus* on the worth of the article–not the mentioned incongruencies, however they may have come to be.

    I’m grateful that you shared this gem with us, Shannon. Thank you!

    Ellen in Medford

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