Glamour As A Role

Giorgia I doubt that anyone feels glamorous all the time. Effort is required to bathe, apply makeup or shave (if one does either), handle your hair, and dress in glamorous clothes. Reality-TV shows about aspiring models make it clear that would-be models can look fairly ordinary when just hanging around, and quite extraordinary when they have been prepared for a photo shoot by various designers and then photographed by a professional photographer with assistants helping with lighting (lighting is crucial).

Models are, to some degree, like living mannequins—sculptural canvases that designers can transform with make-up, hair styling, wigs, artificial lashes and nails, and different clothes and shoes. Clothing designers prefer that the models have slender bodies to hang clothes on, and the camera likes symmetrical faces with good underlying bone structure. And models have to be able to role-play. If the photographer wants them to look happy, sad, or peeved, they need to be able to project that quality.

For the ordinary person, glamour may also require playing a role. We are used to seeing ourselves in some roles—such as daughters, mothers, husbands, and people who do certain kinds of work. But we may not be used to seeing ourselves as a glamorous woman or man, because most of the time that is not the role we play in life. But there are occasions and venues that could allow us to play those roles, if we can manage to allow ourselves do it.

Some women and men that I know enjoy the opportunity to dress up and go out looking more glamorous than usual, while others are quite uncomfortable at the prospect of having to dress up for a special occasion, and will dress up as little as is socially acceptable. Perhaps the latter have a difficult time thinking of themselves in the role of glamorous man or woman going out for the evening. This might be easier if thought of as a temporary role.

An event that gives us the chance to dress up may only last a few hours, and some may find it hard to justify spending money in that way. (And to make an extra effort will likely involve spending some extra time and money, and has to be done within what each person can afford.) But the essential requirement is not spending a lot of money, but rather granting ourselves permission to look out-of-the-ordinary relative to our everyday activities, to be seen as having dolled up for an occasion--to play, for a limited span of time, the role of a more glamorous person. And, if we choose to play that role, why not enjoy ourselves and do it with a touch of panache?

[Photo courtesy of Giorgia Cifani. In the photo, she is dressed to attend the SAG Awards.]