Portrait of a beautiful woman.
In order to be objective about what’s in my head, I’m going to try to conjure up a portrait in my mind. If I were painting a beautiful woman, what do I believe she would look like?
I apologize to anyone who feels insulted by my inner eye’s vision of beauty. I’m not defining beauty standards for the world. Far from it!! I’m just examining the mysterious image that lives in my head which I’m likely to constantly compare myself to even without realizing what I’m doing. I invite you to define your own beautiful woman. The one YOU compare yourself to.
And so, without further ado. I introduce my imaginary vision.
The Naked Model
She steps out from behind the thick velvet curtain, naked, ready to take her place on the silk draped platform where the artist in my head will begin to paint her in all her glory. She sashays across the studio floor in fluid stride. Slowly and deliberately she makes her way past the artist and toward the streaming sunlight from the large curtainless window. The spotlight in which she will pose.
There’s very little modesty to her. She’s not faint of heart. Rather ,she is proud, confident and invigorated in her nakedness. Though she’s not exceptionally tall, at 5’6” her body projects itself as long and lean. Her weight approximately 125-130 her size approximately size 6 or 8. Her torso is set above a waist that is slightly higher than her center, giving the appearance of legs that could go on forever. Legs defined by the cut of her muscles leading down to feminine ankles and thin feminine feet with beautiful arches and long thin toes.
Her hair, long and thick and dark, flows from the crown of her head down across her shoulders to the middle of her back. It falls softly on one side over her shoulder to reach down and cradle the perfect bottom curve of one breast.
As she passes, the artist observes her back and the width of the shoulders proportionate to the width of her hips, the shoulder blades prominent yet not harsh or jutting in a starved appearance. Her arms are long and her biceps softly defined beneath the skin. They communicate health more than athleticism. She is well defined and yet there is a softness to her. Her forearms seem to glide down through small wrists from which emerge long manicured hands, lean fingers, healthy nails.
There is something very fluid, very dancer-esque about her arms and legs, feet and hands. They are more than appendages to her body they are an extension of her in some way I can’t really describe. This woman in my mind, she is goddess like in her grace and sensuality. Good god, no wonder I have difficulty matching up to my internal perceptions.
Her rib bones are barely noticeable yet set just below the surface of her smooth skin. She’s not overly thin. In fact there is a fleshy quality to her, yet there is no question that she is lean and healthy. Her waist curves in gently, there is no tomboyish straight lines to her torso, there is the distinct whisper of woman in her waist as it curves in and rounds back out to form the upper crust of her hips. Her hips are I believe a little wider than normal. Not so much that it stands out as prominent, only enough that it suggests fertility and sexuality. A bit closer to the pin up girls of the 50’s than the super thin models of today.
The small of her back arches in and curves back out to a smooth, tight, rounded behind. Each buttock firm and defined and plump above the beautiful curved line that separates and defines the top back of a woman’s thigh where it meets her butt.
Her skin is not pale, nor dark, it has a sun bathed quality to it. A glow, a depth. There is little hair on her body, her arms for example appear smooth and hairless.
Turning to face us the artist takes note of a well defined neck, the visibility of her collar bone as it crowns her décolletage, the smooth skin and breast plate that give way to her chest all give her a sculpted appearance. Her breasts set high, firm, abundant though not huge. Rounded on all sides, they haven’t yet nursed children or fought the pull of gravity. The areolas are large and slightly darkened against the skin of her breasts, the nipples are large as well and very prominent.
Her stomach is rounded ever so slightly just above the pelvic region and it is soft. Firm yes, but soft and natural looking. There is no look of extreme body sculpting, no six pack trophy. Just smooth sexy feminine curvature. The skin that lays across it is tight and smooth. Her pelvic bones are well defined. They protrude slightly when she lays back. They are an invitation to something more. To fertility and pleasure.
Her face is pleasing. Oval shaped. Nose is neither long, nor short, nor wide or narrow, it seems to measure precisely in proportion to her eyes, her cheeks, her face as a whole. In fact is kind of non-descript, it comes along with her face but doesn’t stand out. Instead there are three things you notice when you look at her face. Her eyes, her cheeks, her lips.
Her eyes are very large and just almond shaped enough to stop them from being classified as round. They’re rimmed in very thick dark lashes that curl and arch and give her a sultry appearance. My vision has brown eyes with lighter amber flecks of light. Her brows natural not thinly plucked, set slightly higher, further allowing the entire eye to have it’s own distinction rather than framing the eyes closely against the lids. Her eyes are the very first thing you register when you look at her and they are the kind of eyes it is hard to pull yourself away from. They hold your attention.
Her cheeks bones are high and sculpted. They don’t stand out sharply or produce sunken cheeks, rather they just come across as part of the structure that ties together and balances the entire face giving it a very classic look.
Her lips are full and lush, a perfect moist shade of nude pink. Her bottom lip has just a slight pout in its plumpness, the top lip is well defined. The indention just above and below her lips is deep. It is the fleshy pink color that stands out. Very sexy, very flushed and erotic yet so very natural.
Her jaw is well defined but gentle rather than sharp in the lines that contribute to her oval face.
Her skin is clear and glowing. Surprisingly, my vision has just a sprinkling of freckles across the tops of her cheeks and the bridge of her nose. Very light, very sparse, sprinkling. I have no idea why I find this beautiful but I do. I suppose perhaps it represents a youthful innocence. I have always wished I was born with freckles.
She has dimples when she smiles. Subtle dimples. The kind that endear you without really noticing what you’re seeing. She smiles large and openly. Something I’ve always struggled with, perhaps from all those years of worrying about my scar. Instead, I developed a slow subtle smile and a sort of seductive half smile. I’ve never mastered the full on smile
Recently I posted The Woman in the Mirror, a look at how I see myself physically. Before that I talked about how I’d go about my self discovery project in my post called the Variety Method. The impetus for all this is born out of my efforts to re-discover and perhaps even re-invent myself in the aftermath of my partners infidelity.
Reviewing how I feel about my appearance or my physical self image was step 1. Only because I somehow thought it might be the easiest. Before I move ahead to the next step I need to go back, because I’ve realized I left out an important element.
I had said I’d like to explore what I believe defines a beautiful woman and then look at how I believe I compare to my own definition of beautiful. I thought it important that I compare myself to my own perceptions of beauty because everyone’s definition is different. I think that the way we feel in comparison to our own perceptions contributes more to our beliefs and behaviors than the opinions of other people do.
I’m not saying we’re not affected by culture, media, or the opinions of others. But I do believe that the closer we personally believe we are to our own perception of beauty, the more confidence we tend to have. We’re less likely to take other people’s perceptions as personally as we do when the difference between the way we see ourselves and the way we define beauty is a much larger gap. I might be off course but to me it seems to make sense.
Here’s where it gets hard. Do I even know what I believe or are my beliefs just mostly conditioning from the culture around me? It’s really easy to say I don’t believe size matters when it comes to how beautiful a woman is. Yet how can I say that it’s not a factor when clearly I have some self issues that revolve around the 15 or 20 extra pounds I’d like to and really should lose? The two statements would seem to contradict each other, don’t you think? I want to say that every woman is beautiful in her own way and I should be clear on this, I DO BELIEVE that there is so much more to beauty than physical appearance. But, it’s not honest for me to say that, even if deep in my subconscious, I don’t somewhere maintain an “image” of what beautiful or attractive is or isn’t . It’s that image, real or perceived, justified or false, kind or unkind, that I’m constantly judging myself against. I can’t pretend one thing on the basis of what I wish were true and then hold my self-image up against something entirely different.
It’s a difficult thought for me to get across but I truly believe that my self perception and probably the self perception of many women, is being based not on what we think we believe but on something more opaque that lurks in the back of our mind and is fed by the images and attitudes we encounter each day. We all want to believe appearance doesn’t matter so much. Many of us are able to shun those biases and see real beauty in all types of people. Able, that is, until we look at ourselves. That’s what I am digging for here. WHAT is in my mind that dictates whether or not I believe myself beautiful? What standard am I holding myself too and is it realistic?
If I’m not making any sense here, please leave me a comment and I’d love to hear your thoughts.
Well, I obviously have a lofty vision of what I should look like before I could call myself beautiful. If each time I think of myself, I’m somehow subconsciously comparing myself to this image or one similar to it, then it’s no wonder I’m hyper-sensitive to my partners expectations. My mind tells me that if I were the woman I just described, I would hold his undying devotion. He would be so freeking stoked that he was sleeping with this amazing beautiful sexy creature he’d practically be slave to my wants and needs!! He sure as hell would never cheat.
Yet I know that’s irrational. I know this is my mind taking the huge gap between my perception of what I should live up to and what I am and projecting it outward. It’s me taking on part of what he inadvertently blamed me for. Not being sexy enough to keep him at home. I know regardless of my appearance he would have cheated and I know that even if I were that beautiful…beauty eventually loses it’s spell on people.
I also wonder, if I were this incredible imaginary beauty would I even be with my partner? Because beauty that perfect has more options. Right? There is a reason movie stars rarely go out and find a mate that is unattractive and works at the local diner. And that reason is that because of their appearance and or their fame, they have more choices. I’m not sure what my point is other than the thought just popped into my head that if I looked like that, this perfect sex object he’d secretly love for me to be, then why wouldn’t I be off courting Johnny Depp or sexy sultry Enrique? Looking at it another way, if my mate were Johnny Depp, he wouldn’t settle for me as I am now. You can bet on that! Yet while I accept that he’s not Johnny Depp, he still secretly wishes I were his perfect vision of sex appeal and beauty. Those things still matter as much or maybe even more than who I am. I feel like somewhere in his mind he holds me responsible for not being that vision. Like I’m responsible for him missing out on something better. Is this how women became the old ball and chain? Because they subconsciously believe WE are the ones preventing them from finding that super goddess they fantasize about and believe they could have?
Ok, I’ll digress there. The point was to look at what my inner mind has conjured up as the standard for beauty whether it be realistic or not, and I think I’ve got a clear picture now of what I’ve been comparing myself to. There’s definitely a gap between my subconscious image of perfection and my reality. Assignment done! On to the next step….