I've shelled out an embarrassing amount of cash on books, infomercials and products that promised to make me look like whatever girl was in the photo. It didn't. (And I'm pretty committed when I jump into that sort of thing which leaves me feeling defrauded.)
I've come to believe that true beauty is an internal thing. And I'm not talking about "well, she has a great personality." Beyond that.
We all have an energy body--the divine spark that makes us alive. And there are things that make it glow. Discovering who we are. Being loved. Feeling joy in a moment. Getting engaged in activities that make us feel alive. All of those things brighten us.
And when are lit up from the inside, we leak that. It is beautiful.
There will never be enough outside affirmation in the world to make us feel content with ourselves. (If there were Lindsay Lohan, Jessica Simpson and Brittney Spears would have very different lives.) Nor will self-affirmations fill the void. (I am pretty enough. I am smart enough. And doggone it people like me?)
Instead, there seems to be a process of discovering who we are--our unique Imago Dei--that brings true beauty. The kind that makes others feel beautiful too.