It’s true. This is how you break the internet.
Solange Knowles wedding was nothing short of epic. Fans and well-wishers everywhere agreed that her wedding style has truly changed the game and raised the bar for celebrity weddings to come. Yet I believe that it also did something much more than that. She proved to young women everywhere that you don’t have to bare all on your wedding day–or any other day–to be beautiful.
Solange broke the internet – and she did it with her clothes on.
I know that these days, the mindset of “if you’ve got it, flaunt it” has taken over. Just a few days prior to the Solange wedding, the whole world had to witness Kim Kardashian putting her entire body on display for Paper magazine. Prior to that, Nicki Minaj cover art for her single ‘Anaconda’ featured only her behind. And of course there’s the overt ‘feminism’ of Solange’s sister Beyonce. Clothes are being manufactured to expose more curves and skin—everything from sheer and fitted sweaters, to low-rise jeans with ginormous rips up to the upper thighs. More and more the media is conditioning females—especially young girls and young women—that skimpy is the new sexy, tighter is better, cleavage is king, and that if you’re not dressing in the ways of ‘the new normal,’ you’re uncool, undesirable, and a prude.
I have two daughters. My oldest daughter is soon-to-be 21, and my youngest daughter will be 13 in a few months. For parents of daughters, I know all-too well that the problem has increasingly become finding positive examples in the media to show them that having confident body image and being comfortable in your femininity and sexuality does not mean you have to openly advertise it through body exposure and choices of attire.
The images from Solange wedding sent a special message to all daughters everywhere. In the words of actress and daytime talk show host Tia Mowry: “Don’t be ratchet—be refined.” Wearing clothes that appear to be painted on, or exposing every body part imaginable is not real beauty. Real beauty is knowing that although the curves are present, accentuating them is not always necessary. Real beauty is having a higher level of self-love and self-confidence, understanding that:
- We were designed in the image of our Divine Maker and therefore our bodies are precious and priceless temples. There’s nothing wrong in presenting ourselves as the queens we were created to be.
- As women, our bodies hold great power. However, they also hold a great weakness. The world can use our bodies to build us up or break us down. Therefore, we must always remember that how we dress is how we will be addressed.
- Our beauty and confidence comes not in our bra cup size, our waistline, our hip or thigh measurements, skin tone, our hair length or texture, or even the mass of our rear-end. Rather, it is in our grace, intelligence, elegance, decorum, strength, poise, and overall wonderful uniqueness.
Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.
~1 Corinthians 6:19-20 (NIV)
To all of the daughters everywhere: know that you ARE indeed beautiful—and you never have to degrade or devalue yourself to prove it. Take a note from the Solange wedding: when it comes to showing the world how beautiful you are, a little modesty and class can go a VERY long way!
How do you deal with the growing problem of positive self-images in the media for girls and young women? Are you currently a Mom of a daughter? What ways do you use to help her differentiate the media images from the real core values of beauty and womanhood? Share with me below or drop me a line at: email@example.com