Oh! The Pain to Be a Raving Filipina Beauty | Pinay.com
It’s not like we want to be perfect. Maybe just a little. A little taller, a little fairer, a little more filled out in the right places but a little thinner. A taller nose and straighter hair would be nice too. Unfortunately, not all of us are built that way. As daughters of Negritos we are a predominantly dark-skinned and petite race with small noses and black hair. But we’d like to believe that is a stereotype. And although some might find these “exotic” qualities attractive, we all want something we don’t have. Thus the quest to be a little…er…perfect.
Do you really think that Binibining Pilipinas or Miss World Philippines jump out of bed looking like beauty queens? For our self-esteem, we mere mortals would like to believe that the answer is no. Beauty has a price. In most cases, it is pain. And when we joke about the concept of tiis ganda, it really is no laughing matter. It’s more of a sore subject that many of us face when we look at the mirror. And here we all are, sufferers and victims, but beautiful nonetheless. Which beauty contestant are you?
The average Filipina height is around 5’2. That should explain why many of us don’t mind the pain that high-heels bring. A few added inches can’t hurt except on the feet. But to look taller, we’re risking ingrown or bruised toenails, skin infections, and blisters. Our ankles, calves, knees, hips, and back also have to pay the price as we stress our bones and tendons. It’s a small sacrifice to look taller and sexier. Who cares if we look like a two-year-old balancing on our mom’s stilettos?
Don’t get us started on the whole whitening business. There is a whole aisle just for that alone at the drugstore. Soaps, lotions, creams, scrubs, sunblock, pills, you name it. Our dark skin gives us better sun protection. In fact, science says darker skin ages slower, but Snow White didn’t get the seven dwarves and a prince to boot for being nice. She was as white as snow. And we want our prince too. We’ll suffer skin cancer and premature aging for love.
Who does not want smooth flawless skin? What we don’t want is squirming under a dermatologist’s hand while being poked, pricked, and peeled. A microdermabrasion for one is not a fun activity. After the excruciating burning sensation, we come out looking red and raw for days. And have you heard this new thing called Face Acupuncture? A few needles on the face can tighten our skin. There’s also the protein thread that involves pricking the skin with only about 40 needles. And while we’re on the topic of needles, how about Botox? We’d gladly endure pricks and peels for a pretty face.
Fasters and the Fastest
The plate of steak looks good, but so does a slim waist. So we’ll skip lunch, thank you. And while we’re at it, we might as well skip breakfast. We can binge on dinner later. We know it’s not healthy, so we’re also looking at the fad diets; there are multitudes. Whatever gets us there quick. But oh, the grumbling of our stomach. Maybe a good workout at the gym will muffle the noise, or running—fast!
Straighteners and colorists
Most Filipino hair are naturally black and straight if not coarse and wavy. But we like them even straighter if we can, so off to the salon we go for rebonding or keratin treatments. We sit for hours as a stylist pulls at our hair and then sleep standing for three days, afraid we would end up sporting a bedhead for months. We’re also not supposed to wash it for days, so pardon the smell. After all the heating and the tugging and the washing, you’d think we’d give our tresses a break, but no, we need a little color too. As a result our hair becomes dry and damaged but straight and vibrant looking.
Tummy tuck, facelift, nose lift, liposuction, breast augmentation, buttock enhancement, hair transplant, and otoplasty are just some of the items on our menu. There are also laser and light treatments, body wraps, and the works. What’s your poison?
The list is long to the path of perfection. We are beautiful as we are in our imperfections, blessed by the sun, lovingly and fearfully crafted by our Creator. We are pretty petites and dark beauties. But the taller ones seem more striking. The fairer ones look more stunning. We always pine for what we do not have, don’t we?