Hey guys, welcome back to TNTH!
We live in a world where we want to believe that the world accepts the gray areas in life. While we try to create those acceptable gray areas in certain environments and issues, sometimes it just isn’t enough. There are people who are still confused about the fact that there’s more than one gender, more sexual orientations than the ones abbreviated in the LGBTQ community name.
One thing I feel like that’s still very black and white is the whole concept of masculine and feminine and what really defines these two terms. I’ve started realizing this when I cut my hair really short a couple of weeks ago. I mean this is off-topic, but I cut my hair because I did some really bad chemical damage over the summer, and I’m in the process of letting it grow out healthy. I’ve had all different lengths of hair in my life, whether it’s been really long down my back, or chin length — I’m not afraid of the big chop. This time has felt different though. Lately, I’ve been feeling like I’m not “womanly” enough because of it. On top of that, I don’t dress “girly”, so whenever I go out and see the long-haired women with girly outfits and a full face of makeup on, it does make me feel like less of a woman.
But does that really define femininity? Is femininity defined by vanity?
It’s easy to fall down the rabbit hole of insecurity when people look at you differently when you don’t fit that certain look. People don’t seem to compliment those with short hair, the opposite sex don’t really pay any mind to the girls who aren’t “girly”, and girls who don’t wear a full face of makeup every day are not considered “that pretty.” It’s a disgusting perspective on women; that they have to be delicate and girly to be considered a feminine woman, and those who aren’t are “manly” or considered “tomboys”. The type of women who seem to be celebrated is those who fit into that stereotype of femininity while the others are simply looked over.
There’s nothing wrong being a woman with long hair who’s style is girly and wears makeup. If that’s your prerogative, that’s you and there’s nothing wrong about it. What’s wrong about this entire thing is the social acceptance of being that type of woman. It’s pretty much the same thing with men: a masculine man is usually defined as one who is fit, athletic, tall, and dominant. Every man that doesn’t appear like that is usually called punks, pussies, or even gay. There’s a downside to both sides of the spectrum: attractiveness and self-esteem stems from being the role that you were “assigned” in life.
Although I identify as a cisgender woman (cisgender meaning that I identify with the sex and gender I was assigned to), I don’t think I’ll ever find myself being your typical girly or feminine like a cisgender woman. I won’t learn how to contour, conceal, highlight, do whatever to my face with makeup, I won’t choose dresses or skirts as my clothing of choice, and I don’t think I’ll ever grow out my hair to my ass. I don’t think my taste in my own look would ever fall under that umbrella of femininity, but it doesn’t mean that I’m not a feminine woman. We are in 2017, there are literally lists of people’s styles and preferences regarding sex and gender. People come in all different shapes and sizes, as well as different lifestyles and preferences. Masculinity and Femininity, to me, are very old-fashioned. While some people still use the term to describe their preferences in style, it still shouldn’t be something used to describe people as a whole.
To me, femininity is a spectrum of all different types of girls and women. We are more than just frilly pinks and glitter. We are more than just long, luscious locks. We are more than the booming makeup trends that determine your beauty. We’re versatile. We’re both girly and grunge. We’re both long and short hair. We wear makeup some days and bare face on the other. We’re confident, sexy, and beautiful in our own unique way.
SO cheesy, Liz.
If you’re interested to read the list of different labels and identification regarding sex and gender, here’s a really cool article I read prior writing this post.
Let’s be more open, shall we?