Beautiful you say?? Oh no, I’m too ugly for that!

Every morning I look at myself in the mirror, by now familiar with how my physical features are assembled:

Face – oval-ish (tending toward round depending on the time of the month and fluid retention);

Skin – an interesting mix of white Australian mother and dark Jamaican father;

Eyes – dark brown (and I have never quite worked out if they are slightly closer than they should be or not??) with quite long eyelashes;

Nose – standard (I have always thought that you can’t really say too much about a nose);

Mouth – not too big, not too small and really seems to fit the rest adequately and;

Two ears, either side of head that work (selectively of course).

All of the above is held up quite nicely by a neck that is long enough to suit the rest of my 5’9” frame and framed by hair that curls when it wants to and still remains (mostly) the dark rich colour I was born with.

So far, so standard; and yet each time I observe my reflection, I see only the hairs that are crying out to be plucked from my eyebrows, upper lip and (more horrifyingly) chin. I see the double chin forming as testimony to the 30 or so kilograms I should lose. I see, on a good day, something not be hidden under a paper bag, but not something worthy of my care and attention; on a bad day I see a piece of nothing. I certainly do not see the product of two people who (at the time) loved each other enough to join together to create me and I certainly do not see the reflection of years of memories that have moulded the creature that is me.

Why?

Well, right now, I do not have the answer to that particular question, but it is one that I intend to explore and will share the outcomes with you as I discover them.

This website is the culmination of my 38 year journey to womanhood. I have realised that I am not just weighed down, but buried UNDER the emotional baggage collected over these years. Baggage I have happily collected that has me convinced that I simply cannot be beautiful because I do not fit the mould of what a stylish, beautiful woman should look like.

With the help of many, many wonderful people (most of whom I have not even met face to face) I have decided to dispose of this baggage, and I invite you to share this journey with me.  I have no doubt that this process will be quite hard as I am sure as there are many pieces that I am particularly fond of, but just as I purge my house of unwanted items in the physical sense, I must also do the same in the emotional sense.

Along the way I hope to share some learning experiences as well as beauty tips, fashion and styling ideas that have been shared with me.

I am calling this place Style and Substance, and I invite you to come and have a look inside

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