Sophia Loren and her "face"

Did anyone see Sophia Loren on the Golden Globes last night? Why, Sophia? Why? WHY? Why would a beautiful woman do that to herself?

It is sad to me that our society, our celebrity-obsessed, reality television watching, air-brushed and photo-shopped society, is so obsessed with youth and so focused on the external, that a woman of Sophia Loren’s caliber, with Sophia Loren’s bone structure, turns to plastic surgery and ends up looking like this:

I love when you meet an elderly woman whose face radiates joy and kindness, the sort of face that, even though she may not have been a nifty number in her day, showcases the kind of beauty that can only be obtained through inner peace and happiness. I love that. In Hollywood, however, if at 20 a woman has the face she was born with, then at 40-plus she has the face she bought and paid for. It is depressing, a sad testament to youth and beauty worship that is endemic in this culture.

And yet even as I write this I am cognizant of my own hypocrisy.

I wear lip gloss to walk the dog. If it weren’t for the miracle of hair dye I would be completely mule grey, thank you Dad, and so I trek to the salon every seven weeks. I am criticizing Sophia Loren but I have no idea what it would feel like to be an internationally celebrated beauty, one who is aging and losing the very essence that made her famous. My face is not my fortune, so I do not know what effect the passing years would have on my emotional state. I can criticize, but I am doing so from the relative comfort of my mid-thirties.

Compassion is an important element in the cultivation of inner beauty. So even while I feel revulsion towards the youth culture that prompts beautiful women to turn their faces into frightening masks, I am trying to find compassion, to feel sorry that they are drawn to do so.


  1. This was beautiful.

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