Does income determine your attractiveness?
There is no denying that some people are just drop-dead gorgeous, Blake Lively being the perfect example. But how much of beauty is determined by your income? Why is it that majority of female celebrities for example are so attractive?
Let's talk celebrities
The first thing I want to talk about is celebrity glow ups. In the fame industry there are numerous jaw-dropping women who walk the red carpet, but if we were to look deeper in to how they looked before their fame hit an all time high, what would we be left with?
My main example is a classic, Kylie Jenner. Kylie is actually predominately famous FOR the way she looks now, which of course puts a lot of pressure on her to be ''perfect''. But how much of her looks are actually real? If we take a look back to the early start of her career, although granted she was younger then, there is a huge difference in her appearance. When comparing Kylie's before and after it's clear to see that a lot of her beauty can be attributed to all of the expensive surgeries that she has undergone. What kind of message does this send to other women? we'll talk about that in a minute.
In the Kylie Jenner case it is clear that money has made this celebrity prettier. And without the money to undergo these surgeries it is likely that she would not be as pretty as she is today. However, this is not the case for all celebrities, some celebrities really are just undeniably naturally beautiful, for example Jennifer Anniston who is all natural, excluding a nose surgery done for medical reasons. However, majority of these celebrities have gone under the knife at some point to enhance their beauty, which of course they wouldn't be able to do without the income to afford these surgeries or expensive beauty treatments.
Is this setting impossible standards?
Majority of the population aren't rich. And these surgeries cost a pretty penny, in fact they can cost thousands of pounds for each one. To the richer population, this is merely pocket change. They can easily afford these surgeries to enhance their looks. And this unfortunately is setting impossible beauty standards for a lot of other women. As richer individuals, predominantly celebrities, are so idealised in society, many women are spending thousands of pounds because they believe that in order to look pretty they must look like them.
"15.6 million cosmetic procedures were performed in 2020, with the five most common surgeries being Nose Reshaping, Eyelid surgery, Facelift, Liposuction, and breast augmentation."
Unfortunately, what many women don't see is these beauty standards are fake. Although these celebrities are naturally beautiful too, they also constantly have their hair and makeup done by professionals and many have facial treatments every week and professional trainers and nutritionists, which granted although does put you in better shape, is not achievable without a lot of money and without all of these factors, would these women be as pretty?
Isn't there more to beauty?
At what point did we forget that beauty isn't just the way that you look? Consumerism has killed our self-worth and altered our perspective on what "pretty" is.
We aspire to look like celebrities because society has told us that if we look beautiful like them, then we will be loved and admired as they are. But haven't we forgotten that behind the wool over our eyes is the real truth. Consumerism wants us to believe that we have to look like them, that we have to look pretty to be valued, because then we will spend thousands of pounds on products to do just that.
Think of all the beauty-enhancing products out there, hair extensions, lash extensions, lip fillers, nose jobs, breast implants, make-up, hair products. If we as a society believed that we were enough already and that pretty meant more than looks, then these products would be obsolete and the beauty industry, which is, according to Statista, ''projected to value at about 758.4 billion US dollars by 2025" would be virtually non existent.
Beauty standards have made people think that the only important thing is looking pretty, but there is more to life than looking pretty, and there is more to pretty than just physical appearance.
So yes, in societies eyes, money makes you prettier. It enables you to get surgeries to alter your looks to fit with current beauty standards and afford more expensive beauty products. We have clear evidence of this through celebrities "glow-ups".
However, this is to an extent, without self-worth and self-love, this desire to feel pretty enough can go too far. An unfortunate case of taking surgery to the extreme is Jocelyn Wildenstein, who's desire to be prettier and prettier has ultimately left her unrecognisable.
Money can change how you look on the outside, but it doesn't make you prettier on the inside. You don't need money to feel pretty, you need self-worth and happiness, and that arguably can't be bought.