i AM beautiful

A friend of ours recently shared the “I am beautiful” project with us.  After we both decided to participate, we also decided to post them together with some reflections here.  We invite you to also join in the project and proudly declare your beauty!

Jess’s experience:


I loved the idea of the project, even as I was unclear about when I would have time to take a picture and post it. Graduate school is not for the weak, nor the time-management challenged! I wanted it to be a real reflection of the way I look – and as it turned out, even the location is reflective. In the background, you’ll notice the lovely interior of a cafe on the campus of NYU. The group for my management class paper meets here once a week. Seizing the time between that meeting and class, here is a real picture of what I really look like about 90% of the time. It’s a new sweater I got on sale at Old Navy, and my hat that I made last year, and no make up and a little disheveled. But I still feel good in my skin and like the way I look. And that’s really important!

Also, my PSA for today – ladies, go get your annual checkup with your gynecologist. Don’t let it be an emergency that gets you there. You have to take care of yourselves and that means regular checkups. You’d want every family member you love to be checked – so do it for yourself! I did mine today. A little uncomfortable? Yes. Important? Yes! Okay, I’m done with my soapbox now!

Mel’s experience:


I was a bit apprehensive about actually posting this, but alas, here we are.  When I first heard about the project, I was all in – then as I realized it meant embracing who I am I rethought how I was going to approach the project.  I realized that I needed to do it without changing how I looked.  To me, it was about my inner beauty and the beauty in who I am naturally, not just when I’m dressed well and wearing makeup, but who I am after walking to and from a long and busy day at work, when I got ready in hurry and lots more excuses.  It was about embracing who I am and where I come from and where I’m going. Life is a journey, and gosh darn it, I am beautiful while I travel through it!


4 thoughts on “i AM beautiful

  1. M., I’ll admit to chuckling in surprise seeing the rebbetzins-to-be posting pictures of themselves with an “I am beautiful” sign. I dunno, just initially didn’t seem to be in the spirit of tznius. I would also be amused seeing fellow dudes holding signs of themselves declaring, “I am handsome.” But I read the descriptions and I guess I see what the project is trying to do, encourage the ladies to embrace their own unique beauty without being self-conscious of themselves.

    • As far as tznius goes, you will note that both of our photos show little more than our faces and covered heads.. Not much un-tznius there Mr A. Though yes, I can see how without reading the intention it could be humorous regardless. We really do hope that our female readers will be empowered to recognize their own beauty as well (and honestly, I know a few men in my life who could use an amp-up of their self-worth).

      • Totally, that’s why I said specifically “the spirit” of tznius. Obviously tznius isn’t just about being covered the right way according to halcha…. So to proclaim oneself as beautiful initially seemed not in the spirit of tznius, but then I read the nature of the project and think I got what you were trying to do.

        Sure, it goes for dudes too. This former sufferer of gynecomastia should know. Having man-boobs in early high school was no picnic, especially when being picked for the skins team on the basketball court! Talk about having body image issues!!!

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