I can’t help but feel exceptionally fortunate to have grown up without the internet.
And that the only things I really obsessed about during my teenage years was making mix tapes, reading books, and sewing myself things made out of fluff. And mascara. All the mascara.
There was no social media distraction, no constant pressure to consume; to look and be the best. I miss long afternoons spent in the library, furiously studying my latest obsession, whatever it was at the time. For a while it was all things occult and witchy.
It was a nice time.
These days the number of things we are encouraged to obsess over is overwhelming. How many new likes and followers did we wake up to? Are we thin enough? Body positive enough? Sustainable enough? Are our clothes on trend? Is our makeup just right, and what filter should we use? Who’s the most successful? What is the fate of humanity, and can we change the future?
You know, general stuff like that.
I think obsessions can be good and bad. I think you can be obsessed with something and put it to good use, like by seeking out inspiration and working hard at your job so you can get where you want to be. I also think positive can easily turn negative, so if instead of being inspired by others you just constantly compare yourself, you could end up working yourself to death just to prove a point. What I’m saying is, a little obsession can go a long way, but too much can make you feel like you’re drowning.
Is it OK to be obsessed with beauty? Sure. Just like anything else in this life, if you feel a genuine interest or connection with something then why shouldn’t you obsess, just a little. I think the important part is to recognise the tipping point where your obsession turns negative; for yourself and for others, if you’re prone to sharing.
Personally, I don’t think I have ever been obsessed with beauty. I’m just not that girl. I have, however, negatively obsessed over my body, and various other things that haven’t served me well.
Now that I’m older I think more about the simple things. Things like quality skincare and taking care of my mind and body. Things like having compassion for others, and the planet we live on. Things like turning inward when the world feels superficial and out of control, and doing my best to improve myself so I’m better positioned to help others.
Those are the obsessions I’m obsessed with. But I do still love a good mascara.