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What Does Our Changing Perception of Beauty Say About Our Values?

By Margaret Manning January 09, 2015 Makeup and Fashion

Humans are social creatures and we are aware (sometimes painfully so) of the ways that we are perceived by others.

As women in our 60s, we have seen our share of fashion and beauty trends come and go. We participated in some. Others we ignored, or missed entirely, as we struggled with the realities of everyday life – raising families, climbing the corporate ladder and supporting our communities.

I recently watched a video that reminded me just how much our tastes change over time. On the surface, it was a video about beauty. But, what fascinated me was the way in which each style managed to reflect the “spirit” of the times.

How Has Our Perception of Beauty Changed Over the Years?

The feelings represented ranged from rebellious to quietly confident, relaxed to wild. Please take 1 minute to watch the video and then we’ll return to the discussion. It’s filmed as a time-lapse, so you will see the model transformed from a classic wartime beauty to a flower child to a wild kid in a matter of seconds. (Credit: Cut.com)

Watching this video brought back so many memories from my own life. I may not have participated in each of these phases, but, I was certainly aware of what was going on around me. As I watched, I was reminded of how much pressure there has always been on women to be visible in society.

Styles change with the mood of the times, but, the desire to be beautiful and desired is constant.

I guess that’s why I’m so conflicted about this video. On the one hand, I feel for the millions of women around the world who struggle to fit in. Personally, I wish that I had realized earlier on real beauty comes from the inside. On the other hand, there is something undeniably beautiful about seeing the spirit of the zipping past in a flurry of brush strokes and mascara.

The video has been viewed over 13-million times in just a few days, so, clearly it is striking a chord.

I’d love to get your opinion on this. Please join the conversation by answering the following questions in the comments section below.

Do you think that our perception of beauty reflects the “spirit of the times?” What was your favourite style or decade? Do you remember applying any of the styles that were portrayed in the video? Which ones? Please join the conversation.

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The Author

Margaret Manning is the founder of Sixty and Me. She is an entrepreneur, author and speaker. Margaret is passionate about building dynamic and engaged communities that improve lives and change perceptions. Margaret can be contacted at margaret@sixtyandme.com

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