Everyone desires to be beautiful. For
women especially, their sense of self-worth frequently depends on how
they measure up to a very narrow definition of feminine 'beauty'
determined by the whims and fashions of the day. In consequence, many
women spend their lives feeling dissatisfied with their looks, trying
one cosmetic solution after another.
Others avoid the whole beauty question entirely. They are intimidated
by the glossy faces of the cosmetics industry, the high prices, the
soul-destroying idea that they (and laboratory animals) must suffer in
the cause of something as transitory and superficial as looks. But
beauty is never simply about surfaces. Skin and hair care are an
important part of our personal health strategy. In fact, caring for
our skin benefits our health and well-being just as caring for our
health beautifies our skin.
The natural healing philosophies of both the East and West believe
much can be deduced about people's health and nutritional status by
the color and condition of their skin, hair and nails. The many
traditional healing practices, such as massage and acupressure, yoga,
cleansing and purification rituals, herbal poultices and essential
oils, aromatherapy work through the skin to rebalance and heal both
body and mind.
Eating the right balance of food, enjoying both exercise and
relaxation, creating harmony in our emotional lives, all these
contribute to a glowing complexion. In turn, the sensual, nurturing,
even spiritual pleasures and rewards of looking after our skin are
important contributors to our health.
By spending time on yourself - by treating yourself - you are
effectively demonstrating to yourself that you are worth looking
after. And it is this attitude, along with your skin care routine,
which animates your whole being. Take this caring attitude outward to
other species and to the world and you have captured the spirit of
beauty as opposed to its commercial image.
Fashions in hair, make-up and clothes will continue to excite, inspire
and challenge us to experiment with our appearance. But women also now
want to see healthy, vibrant, intelligent good looks firmly on the