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Lifestyle Stories Brought to you by Signature Forum
June 2007
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Changing Beauty
In our last newsletter, we showed you how the iconic beauties of ancient cultures were shockingly similar to today’s (not to mention their skin care regimens). This month, we’re going to shift gears a bit and show you how we’ve changed our perception of beauty to the point of completely contradicting ourselves. Hey, no one said we couldn’t change our minds.
He’s so...pretty.
He's so...pretty

He’s so...pretty.

Over the last century, we’ve seen our fair share of manly men. The cowboy, the construction worker, the chiseled businessman…those “Built Ford Tough” varieties who are the epitome of all things “male.” That’s why it came as a shock to many when in 1998, Nature published an article claiming women consider Paul McCartney to be the “Cute Beatle” because they are attracted to more feminine features. So apparently, it was his slender nose and rosebud lips that really made his female fans (or fanatics) weak in the knees.

How does this theory relate to today’s "metrosexual?" You know, the guy you see on the street occasionally who looks like he took longer to get ready than you did.

It has long been thought that we are more attracted to mates with “sex appropriate” features. Surprisingly, the female participants of this study not only preferred the aesthetics of feminine features in men, but went as far as to associate negative character qualities like dishonesty and coldness with a strong jaw, heavy eyebrows, or a square face. On the flipside, you may be wondering if the men of this study preferred females with more masculine features over the more feminine subjects. In answer to your question: There are some things that will never change.
 
Long Live the Bra

Long Live the Bra?

2007 may be the 100th anniversary of the bra, but the Tank Top/No Bra combo has become its own trend in the last few years. While many women wouldn’t leave the house without a bra, there seems to be a growing number who have pitched (or burned) their collection. At one time, this look seemed to be reserved for Hollywood celebrities or runway models. Nowadays, women from all walks of life seem to be taking a stab at going braless. The barista who makes your coffee every morning, the female co-worker…and yes, even the soccer mom.

This year’s cosmetic surgery statistics seem to reflect this change in the female consciousness regarding breast size. Last year, of the 235,000 breast augmentation surgeries performed, 40,000 of those surgeries were for breast implant removal. Cosmetic surgeons also reported a record number of breast lift procedures that were performed to help patients regain the “oomph” of their younger days. Undoubtedly, most implant removal cases are brought about by a change in breast size, implant leakage, or rupture; however, many surgeons claim women are wanting to remove their implants or lift what nature gave them because they would simply rather have smaller, perkier breasts. Go figure.
 
Long Live the Bra
Ending the Tan Ban
Ending the Tan Ban

Ending the Tan Ban

You may be surprised to know that the end of the “tan ban” didn’t start in the 1960’s with sun worshipping Baby Boomers, but actually began in the 1920’s with Coco Chanel. By default, she introduced the sun-kissed look to French fashion society when she accidentally tanned while traveling from Paris to Cannes on the Duke of Westminster’s yacht. Soon after, women ditched their bloomers and hit the beach. By the 1940’s suntanning oils were introduced, and by the 1960’s tanning had become its own art form.

Of course, sunbathers of yesteryear were oblivious to the fact that their sun drenched days would come back to haunt them 30 years later in the form of wrinkles, sun spots, or worse…skin cancer. Knowing what we know now, it’s surprising that tanning is still as popular as it ever was. Since the 1970’s indoor tanning beds or “fake bakers” have reached record highs and now represent a $5 billion industry. This phenomenon is pretty ironic when you consider the fact that tan skin was once loathed by society’s elite as an unattractive side effect of being working class.

So, when it comes to our nearly 100 year obsession with tan skin, you can credit (or blame) Coco.
 

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Until Next Time,
The SignatureForum Staff
 

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