What is beautiful? More importantly to your teen daughter – is she beautiful? It’s a loaded question and your daughter’s self-esteem, relationships and even her spiritual health can depend upon how the topic of beauty is handled and taught by those around her. As her parents, you have a lot of influence in how she views herself. But how does a Christian parent balance the concepts of humility, beauty, self-esteem and inner versus outer beauty.
It’s a minefield for sure, and one the social media beauty expert Chelsea Crockett attempts to tackle in her new book Your Own Beautiful. Crockett, known for her BeautyLiciousInsider videos, has attempted to address a lot of topics of interest to teen girls. The book covers everything from beauty to boys from a Christian perspective.
Barely into her young adult years, Crockett knows what is important to tween and teen girls. She attempts to address those topics from a Christian perspective, and most of the time she succeeds. She has great practical tips on things like Bible study and accountability. As often is the case with this type of book, the author shares how she strayed from God for a bit and what she learned in the process. (Which is great, but I still would appreciate an occasional book from a teen who didn’t go “off the rails” – not perfect, but who was as consistent as any of us at trying to live the life God wants for us.)
The only concern I had about the book is that at times I felt as if it were sending mixed messages. Crockett tries to get her readers to focus on what God wants for their lives and then will suddenly throw in a sidebar on hair or makeup. In fact there is an entire chapter on beauty – clothes, skin, hair, makeup – the works. I understand that’s what makes her popular. I realize she isn’t promoting a total focus on outer beauty. I would imagine if you asked her, she would say she is just encouraging teen girls to make the best of what God has given them. It still left me feeling a bit torn and uneasy.
I realize inner and outer beauty aren’t mutually exclusive. I just keep being haunted by the verses in I Peter 3:3-4 – “Do not let your adorning be external—the braiding of hair and the putting on of gold jewelry, or the clothing you wear— but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God’s sight is very precious.” (ESV) Is Crockett undermining the critical faith messages in her book, by constantly returning to the outer beauty tips and suggestions?
Honestly, I don’t know the answer. The book gives pretty good, godly advice for a young woman. The beauty advice itself isn’t bad. I just keep wanting her to “pick a side” and stick to it. And of course the cynical side of me wondered if the money for her beauty advice suddenly disappeared, would the book be the same?
In the end, this book probably won’t hurt your daughter and may even help – especially if she is already a fan of Crockett. Personally, I just prefer the many books by Rebecca St. James for a more mature, balanced, spiritual approach to the topics that interest teen girls.
This book was given to me for free in exchange for my honest review. Affiliate links are included for your convenience.