What Beauty Means to Me

My passion for beauty sparked at a young age. I grew up going to the Korean-Styled-Spa, the “Jjimjilbang,” with my mom. At the sauna, I would see ladies taking such thorough care of their skin: soaking in water infused with herbs, sweating in hot saunas, enduring two-hour body scrubs followed by moisturizing with whole milk and oil, shaving cucumber to make a DIY facial, and practicing multi-step skincare routines (the original #kbeauty 10-step routines). Being half-Korean, I learned from my mom the importance of taking care of your skin. Even though I did not enjoy the body scrubs when I was younger, or going into hot and dry saunas, I really appreciate that my mom taught me the value of beauty at a young age which has blossomed into my passion. 

I began experimenting with makeup when I was ten-years-old. I was a competitive dancer and we had to wear makeup for our competitions. At first, my mom would do my makeup and after watching her so many times, I learned how to do it myself and enjoyed the process. I loved how even a little bit of mascara changed my mood. Makeup has become an art form. Today, I use makeup to enhance my features and give me an extra boost of confidence throughout the course of my day. My beauty routine has evolved from waking up early to spend extra-time hiding my imperfections and doing a full-eye look to distract from the acne on my face. Today, I use makeup as a tool, not for necessary means but to enhance my natural facial features. 

Over the years, I realized my beauty routine has become my meditation. Taking care of my skin and body helps calm my mind and my anxiety. The stress of our modern lives can prevent us from connecting with ourselves, we can put such a focus on everyone and neglect our own wellbeing. My beauty routine allows me to connect with my body every morning and night and once I finish I am in such a peaceful state. My beauty routine puts me in a positive mindset for the day and makes me feel confident. Since I have realized this form of self-care works best for me, my passion for beauty evolved into enthusiasm for health and wellness. Today, I utilize my beauty routine as the basis of my wellness. Once I wash my face, hydrate, apply sunscreen, and a touch of makeup, I feel like I can conquer anything. 

As I got older I realized beauty is more than just makeup and skincare. Beauty is not just characteristics or aesthetics, but accepting yourself for everything you are, even your flaws, because that’s what makes you, you. What makes us different is what makes us unique, enhancing our beauty. Beauty to me is being kind to others, having a positive outlook, and self-confidence to know you are beautiful with or without any makeup on. 

My personal definition of beauty has shaped my relationship with skincare and makeup. Once I realized beauty comes from within, I learned how to appreciate myself and this drove my life in a positive direction. At first, I let my acne hinder my outlook and relationship with my body, but I learned to accept my flaws and embrace them, turning it into a learning experience that has changed my life for the better. 

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