This article was written by: ZADOK MOSES


The word UGLY means very unattractive or unpleasant to look at; offensive to the sense of beauty; displeasing in appearance. Curious browsers would be immediately confronted with a deadly question. How beautiful are you?



Frightened dark skinned woman covers face with palms peeks through fingers sees something horrible and unexpected, hides from all difficulties intrigued what happening, against studio beige background

We all enjoy beauty. But an appreciation of ugliness is necessary to it. The beautiful and the ugly are not opposites, but aspects of the same thing. Concerned what people think about your house? Wish your partner were better looking? In dieting, getting a tan or going to the gym, choosing a Weimaraner over a rescue mutt, visiting an exhibition or shopping at Westfield, we are trying to acquire beauty to give us a personal competitive advantage. But don’t worry if you feel ugly: perceptions change.


In 1969, a group of London advertising folk, fatigued with the conventions of their trade, started The Ugly Modelling Agency. They wanted faces with character, not bland perfection. Look at the photographs from the time and you wonder what the fuss was about. The agency survives as Ugly Models whose clients include Diesel and Calvin Klein. Meanwhile, ever since the Francophile Nancy Mitford popularised the expression, we have had the idea of jolie-laide, a woman who can be attractive and ugly at the same time. Mitford was herself an example. So too is Jeanne Moreau. 


[td_smart_list_end]‘Beauty’, however defined, is not necessarily attractive. And ugliness is not always repulsive. Besides, tastes change. The tides of taste go back and forth, erasing aesthetic certainties. This is a truth so disturbing that most of our assumptions about art are immediately and ruinously undermined. For example, two years before it was finished, the great Paris intellos of the day lined-up against the Eiffel Tower, writing letters to the papers denouncing it as an ugly and hateful column of bolted tin. Of course, it is now one of the world’s most loved monuments.

Conventional wisdom suggests that physical attractiveness tends to pave a smoother passage Trusted Source through life. This injustice can easily wear away at self-confidence and self-worth if you categorize yourself as one of the “un-beautiful.”

These seven strategies can help you unpack and address persistent feelings of ugliness or dissatisfaction with your appearance.

Recognize the burden of societal expectations

The standards of beauty set by the media are generally achieved through hours of hair and makeup artists and well-tailored clothing — not to mention a filter or airbrush or two.

Consequently, images of celebrities, models, and Instagram influencers sometimes lie closer to carefully constructed fiction than reality.

It’s easy to get caught up in drawing comparisons of yourself with these images. Remember, though, that without the benefit of filters or hours of preparation, many people you see don’t always look the way they appear in photos.

Society conditions people to judge the worth of someone by their appearance. This knowledge might help explain why people worldwide spend so much money on beauty products.

But consider, for just a moment, who this attractiveness serves. You only see yourself when you happen to glance into a mirror, so it certainly doesn’t serve you. It serves the surrounding people.

Here’s the thing, though: Your body belongs to you, and you alone. It doesn’t need to please anyone else.

Take note of the spotlight effect

Humans are imperfect beings, and every last one of us has a few flaws.

Yet, thanks to a phenomenon called “the spotlight effect,” we tend to believe other people notice our physical imperfections, awkward moments, and public mishaps much more frequently than they actually do.

Your personal experiences and perceptions shape your daily life. You’re the main character, the starring player in your reality, so you tend to focus on what matters most to you. That’s OK. But keep in mind: Everyone else in the world operates in much the same way.

The sense of being under a spotlight can highlight those features you consider ugly, making you feel as if they’re illuminated just as brightly for anyone else who sees them.

As a result, you might feel cast down by an awful breakout, a bad hair day, or an unflattering work uniform.

It can help to keep in mind, though, that most of the people you encounter probably aren’t paying you all that much attention. Chances are, they’re more focused on themselves than on your appearance — even when you’re hyper-aware of the way you look.

Plant the seeds of self-compassion

When you dislike yourself, you might feel even more self-conscious about your appearance — but not necessarily because you’re “ugly.”

Rather, feelings of self-hatred make it difficult to practice self-care routines that leave you feeling good about yourself.

Furthermore, when you have doubts about your own worth, people may pick up on that dissatisfaction and unhappiness more readily than they notice your physical appearance.

But this confidence might not take root, no matter how you look, unless you also accept yourself with loving kindness and compassion.

You can nurture and cultivate self-compassion by:

learning to honor your boundaries and emotional needs

working to understand and regulate your emotions

treating yourself with the same kindness you offer friends and loved ones, replacing negative self-talk with encouragement

recognizing yourself as an individual of unique worth

avoiding comparisons

Consider why beauty m:atters to you

In a society where people place value on what you look like, you might begin to fixate on what you consider flaws.

When you feel lonely or find yourself unable to fit in, you could end up placing the blame on your appearance.

Maybe you worry that:

your facial features affect your popularity at school and at work

the size and shape of your body leads people to treat you differently

you aren’t attractive enough to find a romantic partner or hold the interest of your current partner

Some people, unfortunately, make quick judgments based on appearance. It’s entirely understandable to feel hurt and resentful when others dismiss or outright ignore you. This rejection can cause lasting pain and leave you doubting your worth, especially when it seems to happen consistently.

Seeing yourself as unattractive, then, might lead you to pursue beauty simply to earn the social acceptance that sometimes comes hand-in-hand with attractiveness.

It’s natural to seek acceptance and attraction, certainly. But it’s also worth recognizing that, while physical appearance can play a part in attraction, other things matter, too.

Not everyone you meet will judge you based on conventional beauty standards. Plenty of people won’t consider your physical appearance at all. They may care far more about other, nonphysical traits.

Body dysmorphic disorder

Body dysmorphic disorder (BDD) involves a preoccupation with parts of your body you consider ugly. You might spend a lot of time examining and trying to repair these “flaws,” feeling stressed about them, or going to extreme lengths to hide them.

BDD symptoms includeTrusted Source:

low self-esteem

frequent mirror checking

social anxieties

compulsive behaviors such as skin picking

BDD is relatively common. In the United States, BDD affects around 1 in 50 people. It is most common for a person to develop this disorder during adolescence.

Reach out for support

Certain mental health concerns can factor into your sense of self-esteem and affect the way you perceive yourself, including:

Depression: Depression can involve a dip in self-esteem and feelings of worthlessness. Living with depression can also make self-care difficult, which can, in turn, affect how you feel about yourself.

Eating disorders: Poor body image can also factor into eating disorders. If you live with an eating disorder, you might believe other aspects of your appearance, in addition to body size or weight, make you ugly.

Gender dysphoria: Gender dysphoria, or your awareness of a mismatch between your gender and the sex a doctor assigns you at birth, can also involve a self-perception of ugliness. Feeling forced to conform to gender expectations that don’t represent your true self can leave you with a lingering sense of wrongness, as if you don’t belong in your body.

A therapist can offer more insight into potential underlying causes and guidance on helpful next steps when:

you find it difficult to escape feelings of ugliness

you have a fixation on certain parts of your body

feelings of unattractiveness or worthlessness have a negative effect on your life.

Practice body neutrality

Self-love can offer plenty of benefits, but it doesn’t always come easily. On some days, you might feel insecure in your image.

What is body positivity?

Body positivity is loosely the concept that every body is beautiful. But that can be a little tough to swallow, especially when you don’t feel attractive.

Struggling with body positivity may leave you feeling down and affirmations of self-love might not have much effect if you don’t really believe them.

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Body neutrality offers a far more realistic (and beneficial) mindset.

In a nutshell, body neutrality represents a change in topic. You can’t always change your body or other aspects of your appearance: eye shape, cellulite, bald spots, acne, and rosacea.

You might not feel like these things are conventionally attractive, but they don’t prevent you from using your body to move, work, play, or simply live.

Body neutrality helps you learn to appreciate what your body can do, not how it looks. It emphasizes one key fact: You don’t have to love your body or physical features to find fulfillment and joy.

Instead, you can simply accept those characteristics as they are and move on.

Our guide to body neutrality can help you make the shift.

Consider a few specific changes

It’s not uncommon to feel ugly when you just don’t like some aspect of your appearance. Maybe you know you’d like to update your wardrobe or change your hairstyle, but you have no idea how to get started.

There’s nothing wrong with wanting a new look, and the internet has made it easy to try out changes inexpensively. Even if you lack a highly tuned fashion sense or flair for hair and skin care, a quick Google search will lead you to countless free tutorials where you can explore possible changes without consulting a stylist.

Simple changes that reflect your natural features can promote body neutrality while also boosting self-confidence and helping you consider yourself in an entirely different light.

You might, for example:

choose clothing that feels good on your body

find a hairstyle that suits your facial structure and hair type

experiment with skin care and beauty products to find ones that work well for your skin type

Some people even find that body modifications, like piercings and tattoos, offer personal expression that inspires self-confidence and self-acceptance.

Just remember: It never hurts to ensure you’re only making changes you truly want yourself — not changing your appearance to align with someone else’s standards.

The bottom line

The idea of “ugliness” reflects the false notion that your body exists to benefit others. In reality, the way you look doesn’t define you. Even romantic attraction depends on much more than appearance alone.

Increasing recognition of body neutrality and related concepts help highlight one key truth: Your body doesn’t have to look a certain way for you to experience love, pleasure, and joy. Happiness is free.

Zadok Moses
Zadok Moseshttp://nyscconnect.com
Zadok Imooje Moses is a content writer and a teacher with years of experience. My passion is to educate people on the need to to use the internet to their advantage.

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