Michelle Wong

 

Since the dawn of media influence on society’s perceptions of beauty, there have always been strong and varied opinions on how we define beauty. Valeria Lukyanova, also known in mainstream media as the “Human Barbie,” is no different.

Valeria Lukyanova has spent countless hours of exercise, appointments, and plastic surgeries to achieve what she considers to be true beauty. In a short excerpt from GQ magazine, in one of the most all-around bizarre interviews I have ever read, she stated, “…a Russian marries an Armenian, they have a kid, a cute girl, but she has her dad’s nose. She goes and files it down a little, and it’s all good. Ethnicities are mixing now, so there’s degeneration, and it didn’t used to be like that… Remember how many beautiful women there were in the 1950s and 1960s, without any surgery? And now, thanks to degeneration, we have this.”

It seems that Lukyanova has spent some time pondering the evolution of beauty, though I must disagree with what she has to say. Not only is this statement contradictory to how she lives her own life, but nobody has the authority to claim multi-ethnic children as generally unattractive. Furthermore, beauty is not limited to a being’s exterior. Confining beauty to a person’s outward appearance is nothing but a devastating limitation.

Though Lukyanova seems to have given some thought to her interviewer’s questions, I don’t feel that she thought through them enough to give sound answers. If her goal was to enforce the qualities of natural beauty found within a race, then theoretically, any time spent under the knife is contradictory to her statement.

Though she claims to only have had minimal surgical procedures, if she truly believed in preserving the integrity of one’s natural beauty she wouldn’t need it at all. Plus, since beauty is subjective, who’s to say that interracial children degenerate beauty?

As time progresses, how we define aesthetic beauty is constantly changing. Different cultures and individuals find different things attractive. To say that the mixing of races creates children that don’t look like “classic Barbie” might be a more accurate statement, but to say that those children aren’t beautiful is a whole different and impossible claim. Seeing as how these claims aren’t sound, it is my hope that media will not give her voice any authority on our society’s definition of beauty.

If Lukyanova feels satisfied that she has achieved true beauty, good for her. But if one must assert that natural beauty should be preserved within a race, in order to be a spokesperson for that statement, the individual would have to be someone who was actually satisfied with their own natural assets. But, her statement is still unsound. Beauty is not limited to one person’s definition, and there is no one race that is more beautiful than another. Beauty is defined differently by everyone.