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Thursday, August 28, 2008

Who We Choose To Be

What is more "us": our natural selves or the us we choose to become?
I am a red hair addict and despite the cost *sigh* I think I could easily be a redhead for the rest of my life (with a few adventures in other colors as well though!). A friend of mine says she will never color her hair though, because it's not "her." However, who is to say the color I was given at birth is "me?" I mean, isn't the way we choose to present ourselves more "us" than what birth gave us? I love red hair for the numerous heroines of this tone that I read when I was younger, the characteristics usually given to redheads, and the famous actresses, artists, writers associated with the color. Honestly the color is a better reflection of my personality which has been called simply "passionate." Am I a sandy brunette? Perhaps naturally, but how well does that "suit" me...?
Another perspective: my eye color doesn't express the inner me, but my eyeglass frames are a reflection of my taste. The shape, color are all conscious decisions, as well as the choice to wear eyeglasses over contacts (although maybe soon I shall have both...).
So, is your natural body (which lifestyle will shape anyway...) more "you" or do you think the choices you make are a greater reflection of yourself?
Outfit details: shirt- some shop in Japan, dress- H&M, shoes- Dr. Scholls, stockings- tights from Target cut

59 comments:

atelier said...

I think what you choose is more you. I have no doubt. Not only about dye the hair but also about surgery, there are a lot of people who suddenly have surgery and are happy. I guess each one has to choose what she/he wants to be.

Amelia said...

Great pictures. I think when it comes down to it, this is all a question of nature versus nurture. Is personality--including style--more influenced by how you're born or your experiences? It's a really tough question. I don't think what you're born with is necessarily more "you," but I think there is something to be said for accepting what nature gives you. I don't really know.

CoutureCarrie said...

Interesing post . . .
As for hair color, my hair is naturally a light mousy brown, but I have been going lighter almost all my life. I did dark brown for a while and it didn't feel like "me".
I have always wanted to try red but I am too scared, b/c I've heard all the horror stories about orange clown-ish reds. . . .

Btw, love the posing on the Oriental rug; very Hermes/Gucci Fall 08 runway!!

xoxox,
CC

Ashe Mischief said...

I think there's something to be said about the red you choose, too. It's quite similar to mine, and I don't feel like quite a "redhead" with the power, passion, and aggression associated with the bolder reds, but the more subtle nuances associated with having auburn hair. It's a bit subtler, but just as sultry.

(Which is also to say, I've been dying my hair over half my life.)

I think to a certain degree, it's a little bit of both and how successful we are at being either our natural self or the self we choose to be. If we choose to be one way, but aren't quite successful at it, what does that in turn say about us? If that makes sense...

kırmızı kemik said...

oh my god the issue is so deep that I could not be able to come out of it. but I fell in love with the delicious photos at first sight.

young said...

You are who you choose to be. In every way. People change.
I changed my hair along with my personality for many years. I am comfortable with my natural hair colour now, though. I think about changing it from time to time, but then I think it would not be 'me' any more.
Maybe in a couple of years I will want to change my hair again, or wear glasses all the time in stead of some times. Maybe I will only wear pants, maybe only dresses. Who knows.

Adiel said...

I think the answer is "A mixture of both" It doesn't have to be one or the other.

I have also always wanted red hair. The trouble is, I don't have the skin tone to pull it off, you do!

Saorise, the Irish nymph said...

i wish red hair suited me.
i think that whatever you feel best in is whatever suits you.

La Fée said...

I agree completely with the idea of striving to become more yourself. It may sound abstract but I enjoy dressing as who I really am and who I want to be rather than what I am supposed to by the conventions of society etc.
And the outfit's proportions are perfect, the knee-high stockings make it that bit more quirky :)

Lisa said...

love your thoughts on this.

+ your hair. it suits you perfectly.

I don't color my hair, but think that it suits me as I was given the lazy hair gene !

The Historian said...

I feel the most "me" when I have red highlights in my hair. I'm naturally a medium brown with a touch of red, but the amped red color makes me feel a little sassier, and a little more confident. I think you are who you decide you are.

Allure said...

I totally agree with you. Our style is a reflection of who we are.

estrella said...

I think that both are parts of our true selves. To me, the most inner tastes and feelings should get reflected, and at the same time we must also accept our natural character or shape...

By the way, I've given you an award :) Please have a look at it and feel free to continue it or not!

Katia said...

Well, maybe you're friend's "natural" color is the one that suits her. I have never died my hair, but only because I can't picture myself without blonde hair, it's just me. And red suits you so well. I think something is "you" rather naturally or not, whatever suits you best.
I love your outfit by the way, cute shoes =]

kater said...

I love love love these shots, the colors are so wonderful!

She's Dressing Up said...

This is a difficult one, but Im pretty sure we can only be defined by what we do and what we choose. Being born with certain coloured hair, a certain height, in a certain place etc... means nothing to who we can become =].
I love these photos, you're on a pretty fantastic rug there!

Fashion-Obsessed! said...

i certainly think the choices you make are a reflection of you, every choice you make in every aspect of your life reflects on you as a person and your personal morals and beliefs. cool pictures, i love the knee high socks
Bye
x

Darcy said...

It depends on the definition of "me". Are you a soul with a body or a body with a soul?

If you're soul with body, then the body is a part of you, but not you by definition. Therefore you can change your physical tool all you want.

If you're a body that developed a soul, then you are who your born and affected by soul after the fact, making you a combination.

If you have no belief in soul, then you are your body, what you're born with, and the concept of 'you' remains immaterial in an organic part of your brain called ego.

Your choice in what you believe, determines what degree the you is physical (born), or manifested (soul with a born tool).

So decide. :) Are you moment-to-moment creation, or permanent product? The question disappears after you decide. The quantum wave of probability collapses.

I believe I'm soul first, body second, so I am NEVER my body by definition, but it is a part of me and I'm grateful for what I've created. :) A wonderful etch-a-sketch that reflects who I am right now as I draw on it, not then, nor later.

copperoranges said...

you are totally a red head. i quit dying my hair simply because i could only afford cheap dyes and i didnt want to keep damaging my hair. i hope it doesnt turn too dark because i am definitely a blonde.

as for eye color ... how exactly does eye color express a personality or innerbeing?

Darcy said...

copperoranges, you never saw a person inside their eyes? You haven't delighted in how eye color filters that communication? When pondering through experience if one physical attribute is more reflective of self than another, the eyes are at the tip! :)

Anonymous said...

The thing is with people who arent caucasian or do not have genetic variations in eye or hair colour, like me, you cant do anything to your hair (except streak it maybe), without it looking stupid and unnatural. So, enjoy your freedom in hair colour choice, I'll be looking on jelously! :)

Liz Blair said...

This is another interesting question. I guess that I would have to agree that I am both the look I have chosen and the one that I was given by God.

For example, my sister who is 2 years younger than me has already gotten liposuction in her thighs and a mini-face lift. Although I can't rule out the possibility of one day getting something done, I feel like its somewhat healthy to accept certain parts that come naturally.

On the other hand, I did wear wigs for a while, and am likely to do so again in the future.

beccajanie said...

I think for sure that what you choose is more "you", although I have to say as a natural redhead (glad to hear you love the colour so much btw!) I really can't see myself as anything else, because red hair is just, me! So it depends, but for the most part I think it's a choice thing.

A Black Tie Event said...

Very interesting post. I think what you choose to change about yourself reflects who you are most accuartly, because you really can't choose what you're born with. I never really thought of hair color as showing someone's personality, but in the past few years I've definitely thought about it more. I wish I had the guts to die my hair red, I love red hair as well. But I'm not sure if it's right for me. I'm somewhat shy around new people, and I don't know if I could pull it off. I like my natural dark brown hair a lot, but I can't help wishing I had the personality to pull off red hair.

jayne said...

ooo fascinating post topic. I definitely agree with you, its your choices that make you who you are, not what you're born as. Maybe your friend says dyeing her hair isn't "her" and that's her CHOICE

Brittney-Elizabeth said...

Such a great thought! I so agree just because we are born a certain way and don't like that then we should do what we like/want to be.

Annie said...

I've been thinking about going red this fall, but I've been a blonde my entire life. I don't think anyone will recognize me!

Noël said...

Oooh! My brother and I often have this argument, but about the intent behind signatures. His scrawled, wild signature he claims is more "real", a true, raw, primal indicator of himself. On the other hand, when younger, I spent time cultivating a perfect flourish, wanting something crafted to express myself through style and structure.

We finally came to the conclusion that both are valid. How we choose to present ourselves to others is perhaps even more indicative of our true personality. You say "What is more "us": our natural selves or the us we choose to become?" The very question already makes us choose who we are!

Love the sepia sort of quality of the photos. You become luminous in them! Very rich tones.

michelle said...

You make an excellent point. Only you can define yourself! Besides, you look fabulous as a red head!

Shay said...

I say whatever works, works!

Miss Karen said...

It's definitely who we make ourselves to be. Although there are characteristics like my height that I'm known for and can't control which inevitably makes me "me", I've taken everything that I can possibly control and changed it to reflect the person who I truly feel I am so that when someone sees me they get it immediately.

Amber said...

I am a red hair addict and have been dying my hair so since my senior year of high school and in all honesty I think I'm meant to be a red head but unfortunately ended up a blonde instead. Silly genetics. I love who I am, but I feel much more 'me' with the red hair and unless forced to I wouldn't go back.

thefashionmaven said...

as a "linda evangelista" wanna-be who has joyfully colored her hair many, MANY colors and adapted varying looks over the years i am tempted to say it's the choices we make - i am a firm believer in self-empowerment on all levels... but i am also one who preaches self acceptance... weird huh?

thefashionmaven said...

as a "linda evangelista" wanna-be who has joyfully colored her hair many, MANY colors and adapted varying looks over the years i am tempted to say it's the choices we make - i am a firm believer in self-empowerment on all levels... but i am also one who preaches self acceptance... weird huh?

kristin said...

great question. I think that the choices we make are more a reflection of our true selves but without being comfortable and, essentially happy and accepting, of our natural body our choices become slightly less meaningful and strong.

also, Jessie is a natural red head! I am so jealous. and I think that you have the best pics of you laying around on the floor, stairs, grass, whatever. really, they're both awesome and slightly chilling (as in, is that a murder scene??)

Soul Tanggg said...

I agree with you about the hair-dying.
I'm a natural blonde. Like... BLONDE blonde.

But i've never EVER felt like a "blonde".
So I've been dying my hair brown for about 6 years now, and I don't regret a moment of it!

:)

The Clothes Horse said...

@Darcy,
You bring up some interesting points, but I don't think that the body and soul can be so easily seperated. I think I am a soul that inhabits a body, but in heaven I don't think the soul will be an amorphous cloud, but will resemble my body. My mental self identifies this shell as me and therefore also conscious decisions made to change this shell are choices decided by the soul/mind.
I suppose we can also get waylaid though by biblical text: body as temple. Clearly the body is not just a tool I can play with as I wish from a Christian perspective, but a temple to be respected...

Kirby said...

Your body is a canvas, you are the artist - colour at will!

Tahda said...

I love this post and totally agree, I have been dying my hair for years now and keep coming back to a lighter shade which I say is "just more me".

I love the red as well though - I had it last year too! but I think it looks a hundred times better on you.

Nadine said...

Hmmh it's the same with your name - your parents choose it without knowing you - and there's no proof that it's the perfect name for you.

The hair color and your eyes are also a "gift" from your parents - but you also can't be sure that they match your personality. Because of that I think it's totally okay to change it. I'm natural blond but I always felt like having black hair and I fell so much better now.

Nay'Chelle said...

I think the choices you make are more "you" than the body you're born with.

Also along the lines of what Nadine said about your parents naming you without really knowing you, I think it's funny how some names embody a person. Like many people I know can't imagine me having any other name than the one I have now, even though my mom chose it at the last minuteafter seeing a girl on tv with the same name.

pretty face said...

That's such a tough one, I really can't decide. I do know that sometimes I feel the urge to cut all my hair off, because that is the part of me which people are always identifying with me and want to see how that would change, or something..

Mimi said...

The knee socks look great on you.i just found a vintage pair in my mom's closet but i'm not sure if they look good and how to wear them without looking cheap

Songy said...

OK it's pretty deep and meaningful. BUT gone are the days when we are just stuck it what we were born with. hair colour for example, soon pretty soon I think companies like L'oreal will come up with some clever oral pills you can take to just change the hair colour and curls over night or something.. eye sight? I got LASEK so I don't need glasses any more. Body shape - oh that one... I workout of course and I eat well etc.. but I know there are many I mean many ways to improve without resorting to operating table. so there you have it. I say if you are not happy you have a choice to change.

Sunniva said...

I love reading your posts. I know I've said it before, but you have such a great ability to really grip hold of your readers in the best possible way! I believe that the choices you make reflect your personality and who you are. I think that your natural body is a "blank sheet" that you can choose to do whatever you want to with.

Ca said...

I think there's i middel way, somewhere. I've accepted myself and the way I am but from that point I can pretty much choose the person I want to become as well.

Ida said...

Such an interesting perspective! Still, what is "you"? Surely not clothes, hair color or accessories. I mean, is someone who wears a plain top and jeans all their lives "no one"? Or rather "themselves" because they don't give in to trends?

yiqin; said...

I have no courage to dye my hair as well! I think I'll just have black hair all my life! & I wish I know how to work knee socks! Love the dress & the shirt :) That's a really beautiful carpet!

KD said...

I am in love with that plaid shirt! I think it depends on the person. I would also love red hair, but in the end, I actually think that dark brown hair, i.e. mine, is more suited to me than red.

1234 said...

i think the choices one chooses to make have the greatest impression upon oneself and others. the way one sees oneself and presents oneself is the way one wishes others to see as well.

Devon said...

to quote John Dryden, “We first make our habits, and then our habits make us.”

That's how I feel.

enc said...

There are so many ways to answer this question; I just try to accept what nature gave me, and not fight what IS. Only in the area of my haircolor do I fight what IS. That will only go on until my hair is sufficiently gray to leave it as it is. Right now, it's only a little gray, and that's something I don't like. for now.

I love these photos.

Paris Tarts said...

I really enjoyed this post. It honestly made me think. I think I'm a more dirtyblonde/tan skinned person at heart...but somehow I'm pale and redheaded right now...I guess what your born with is less a repensentation of your personality then what you choose to be now. In my case I'm naturally blonde but the more I change my colors the more I wish I was the same person/color as before...idk what I'm saying. You look lovely :)

Tart

susie_bubble said...

quite a loaded question...I'm old fashioned and would say that whatever you were handed in the first place SHOULD work for you but by all means if you're not feeling happy at all, there are ALL these options to change your physical state....hair dye, coloured contact lenses and at the other end of the scale...plastic surgery.... I guess the question is where do you stop...?
I like to think my choices aren't drastically trying to change what is inherently mine...

Dina-Dyorre said...

Deep thoughts, shame all people don't bother to think like that. And I 100% agree on the cost, hair-wise everything is so expensive these days! My mum colours her hair with henna and coffee and gets a lovely red tint, it is so cheap and also natural, even if slightly messier and lasts less long. I've always been so jealous of redheads :) I don't mind my hair colour but I've never used heat on it and haven't been to a hairdresser for about 10 years now! Call me crazy.

Oh, and nice carpet too! The photos are really lovely.

miss milki said...

Funny to log on and read this - I was just saying to my sister this morning how I really want to get highlights in my hair again because I don't feel like myself with my natural brown hair. I always think of my self as blonde - and she agreed and said she always thinks of me as being blonde too. This is despite the fact that I haven't had any colour in my hair in over a year. Weird!

Its interesting - why do I feel that I'm more like myself when I have blonde hair than brown? I'm going to be thinking about that for at least the rest of the day!

k said...

there are some things that are easier to change about our style than others. clothes we have nearly total control over, hair is next easiest, but body, as you mentioned, though we do have some control over it, is hardest to change. other than being healthy, the next steps to take would be plastic surgery or other extreme measures. there are times i really don't like my body but i don't think people should feel the need to take those drastic measures just to express their "true selves". there is something to be said for how style expresses your personality, but people shouldn't make assumptions based on appearances. it sounds cliche...but it's true.

Teresa said...

I just want a little volume and lift in my hair, things they promise in Pantene commercials...that's all I ever wanted.

bear said...

i love those socks and i totally agree with you!

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