beguilingblackness asked: I'd like to take some time to thank you for your most thoughtful and gentle reply to my previous (eyebrow-related) question. I have to say that it got me thinking; you're a great role model for all of us! That said, have you noticed how some people can look absolutely gorgeous seemingly without paying much attention to their appearance? How is it that we find Neil Gaiman so adorable, yet it seems he never brushes that head of hair?
Oh, thank you darling! Carful, you’re making me blush~
We don’t have Neil Gaiman here in Equestria, but I did look up some pictures of him. I see what you mean about his hair! It’s got quite a disheveled look to it, but perhaps because I do not know him, his general appearance does not strike me as “adorable.”
His large nose, small eyes, and thin upper lip strike me as someone raw and passionate. But this is because judging by appearances only causes lots of problems, and we cannot judge someone without getting to know their inner beauty. (Inner beauty and outer beauty are different, but they are still related.)
Your world is full of films and television that sets up characters who look a certain way, and has trained you to expect a certain personality from them. There’s no malicious intent in it. Having those stereotypes allows you to believe the story more readily, because you are used to and accustomed to it.
However, when we meet people and ponies in our lives, there is always something much deeper than what we see on the surface, and a lot of that inner beauty seeps out and makes someone beautiful externally.
Have you ever noticed that? You might meet someone and think they’re positively gorgeous, but they don’t necessarily meet a particular cultural standard of beauty. This is because who we are on the inside is so important to how beautiful we are on the outside.
I know this is starting to sound rather trite, but I do really mean it. The care you put into your outer beauty should be the same care you put into your inner beauty, and vice-versa, of course.
So, perhaps Mr. Gaiman has a wonderful internal personality that your world finds so positively adorable in his laugh, or the way he brushes his impossibly tousled hair out of his eyes, or the way he talks. Or maybe it’s something deeper in his writing (because all good writers bare their soul on paper and you can get to know them rather well if you know where to look!).
Whatever it is, it’s a combination of external and internal beauty. I think that ponies and people often make the mistake of saying you can either have a “good personality” or you can be “pretty.” But real beauty is both. Real beauty comes from within and with-out. Like most things in life, it’s never a plain either-or option.
Caring about what you look like says, “I have respect for you.”
Caring about what you look like says, “I have respect for myself.”
Caring about what you look like says, “I have the time to pay attention to what I wear.”
Caring about what you look like says, “I am going somewhere with my life.”