Book Review: In Your Face: The Culture Of Beauty And You By Shari Graydon

by Gio

in your face shari graydon

Name: In Your Face: The Culture Of Beauty
Brand: Shari Graydon
Pages: 172
Price: AUS$20.95

A lively, thought-provoking look at the power and pitfalls of the beauty industry hype.
From fairy tales and Hollywood movies to magazine ads, reality TV and the Internet, we absorb the lesson early: being beautiful is the answer to our dreams. It’s harder than ever for teens to tune out the endless media messages promoting unattainable ideals, yet at no time in history have they had more tools to change the message.
With “In Your Face,” Shari Graydon encourages readers to think critically about the culture of beauty both past and present. Whether it’s the different standards for guys versus girls, racial and size biases, the assumptions we have about models and celebrities, or the message that the “right” clothes, makeup, or surgical procedure can make you a better person, Graydon’s unbiased look into the realities behind our ideals will help teens deconstruct the beauty industry hype.
Fully rewritten and redesigned from the 2004 edition, “In Your Face” has been updated to reflect the heightened pressures of beauty in the digital era — both good and bad — to shape our self-image. The appealing magazine-style format, stylish illustrations, and conversational tone will draw readers into this empowering exploration of the complex subject of beauty.

Beauty is powerful. It’s transformative. It doesn’t just affect our looks, but also our state of mind. When we like how we look, we feel good. We’re ready to face whatever challenges come our way with confidence and a smile on our faces. We can conquer the world. But when we feel ugly, and stress about every perceived flaw, our self-esteem plummets to the ground and nothing ever seems to go right. We start believing we’re not good enough and give up our dreams.

In today’s world, feeling good about the way we look is harder and harder. The beauty industry has set standards that are impossible to achieve for everyone, and then sells us products that promise, by making us look pretty, to solve all our problems. And its customers are getting younger and younger. From fairytale to social media, from TV shows to magazines, young girls are bombarded with the message that being beautiful is the only thing that matters in life. But what does beautiful mean?

With “In Your Face,” a book aimed at teens but that every woman who doesn’t like the way she looks should read too, Shari Graydon encourages readers to answer this question and to think critically about all the beauty messages we are exposed to every day. Graydon explains how companies make money by preying on our insecurities about the way we look, the different standards for guys and girls, how the concept of beauty has changed throughout the centuries, how social media has increased the pressure to look good, and much more. Graydon also wonders if being beautiful is a good thing. We assume that beautiful people have it easy, but their beauty has disadvantages too.

The book is visually appealing. Each chapter is short, but very informative and thought-provoking, and full of pretty illustrations, comics and visual aids that make it an engaging read. Graydon writes in a colloquial way that makes you feel like you’re talking to a friend. Although she’s biased against the beauty industry, she never preaches. Her tone is not angry. It’s frank. Straightforward. Graydon makes you think and challenge your perspective of beauty. Her book’s a very enlightening read that will open your eyes to how profoundly we’re manipulated by the beauty industry.

With In Your Face, Shari Graydon encourages readers to think critically about the concept of beauty. She also offers media literacy tips to help us notice and evaluate all the messages coming at us. Visually appealing, beautifully illustrated, and well-researched, In Your Face is an enlightening and engaging book every teen and woman who is dissatisfied with her looks should read.

Rating: 4/5

Disclosure: this item was sent by PR for consideration.In addition, the review contains an affiliate link. For more information, please see my disclaimer.

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Laurie September 26, 2014 - 2:27 pm

Looks like a good read! I’ve been thinking alot lately about the issues discussed in the book.

Gio September 29, 2014 - 2:20 pm

Laurie, it is. It is short and to the point, but very informative and a real eye-opener.

Natalye September 27, 2014 - 5:29 am

sounds interesting

Gio September 29, 2014 - 2:49 pm

Natalye, it is!


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