Tonight, we were at my mother-in-law’s house for dinner. Ellie and Mark were playing with Yiayia and I was resting on the couch, reading fluffy magazines – a rather lovely way to spend the evening! I found a article about his and hers toiletries – basically, telling me what toiletries we should have feminine and masculine versions of and which were OK for me to share with Nik.
Along with annoyingly implying that both men and women need A LOT of personal care products in order to look and feel good (which I’ve already written about), there was also a very definite underlying assumption of inferiority on the woman’s part. There were sentences like, “A man’s skin is 20% thicker than a woman’s. So he can get away without moisturizing. But to keep the wrinkles away and keep up with him, you need to buy this really expensive anti-wrinkle product to put on your inferior skin.” Obviously, it didn’t say that exactly but it certainly implied it.
Clearly, the goal of this article was to sell products. It wasn’t an advertisement per se but every single item in the article was something to buy and I’m sure the manufacturers of those products either provided the product for free to review and/or paid for the product placement.
The message that they managed to convey in that article was that women are not enough. We’re not enough if we let the fine lines around our eyes show as we age. We’re not enough if we don’t use special hair products to make our hair something that it’s not (straighter if it’s curly, full of volume if it’s straight, lighter if it’s dark, darker if it’s light). We’re not enough if we let our own skin tone show through because it would be a crime if it was uneven. We’re not enough because our God-given skin isn’t as thick as a man’s and so our skin wrinkles faster (because we’re certainly not allowed to look like we’re older than 25 even if we’re 36). We’re just not enough.
THESE ARE ALL LIES.
You are enough. “Body and soul, [you are] marvelously made!” (Psalm 139:14) Your wrinkles are beautiful. They show me that you’ve lived (and are living) a good, full life. Your hair is beautiful, just the way it grows out of your head. Your skin in its varied tones is beautiful to me.
YOU ARE ENOUGH.