Important Sh*t I Learned From Being Raised By A Former Model/Sex Symbol

by Zara Barrie

I’m a girl who has a BEAUTIFUL mother. I know what you’re thinking; all girls find their mothers to be the single MOST breathtakingly gorgeous creatures on a planet adorned with an endless supply of stunningly gorgeous creatures.

While you probably think I’m but another girl besotted with the biased exquisiteness of the woman who raised her, I must confess my mother’s beauty goes into a territory far beyond the typical “mom” beauty.

I grew up with a MODEL mom. I'm not talking about the mom, who embarked on a brief flirtation with a mild gander at modeling in the 70s, but rather had a hyper-successful face of major cosmetic campaigns, attended-every-fabulous party, stops-you-dead-in-your-tracks-because-she’s-so-insanely-pretty, billboard-grazing, bombshell of a mother.

As a teenager, it was difficult to decipher who worshipped her more, the heterosexual teen boys or the homosexual teen boys (like most women blessed with looks, depth and a keen champagne habit, my mother is a total gay icon).

To top it all, she's got a iconic personal style, a wicked sense of humor and a twinkling, enviable, English accent to boot (an accessory coveted just as deeply as a croc Hermes Birkin among the New York fashion set).

People always ask me if I felt pressure growing up with such a beautiful mother (which is kind of a f*cked up question if you think about it).

Herein lies the truth of the matter: While it's most certainly a lot to live up to, the positives I gained from being raised by such an incredible force of nature are immense and priceless.

In fact, having such iconic mother was akin to having a secret key slipped to you, a key that unlocked the treasured secrets of LIFE:

Beauty Is Boring

One would think that having a gorgeous mother would put me under the false impression that looks serve as the single golden ticket to success.

I regret to inform those of you seeking scandal and sin (aren't we all) that being raised by a model taught me the very opposite.

Allow me to let you in on a petite little secret that will save you a plethora of time and stress: Beauty without substance is BORING.

My mother taught me that while we DO exist in a beauty-obsessed culture, it's over saturated.

There are so many beautiful girls in the world; it's not that special a trait.

Your looks might first strike the attention of that casting agent, potential lover or future employer — but it’s vital you have the personality, brains and wit to back it up.

Having a unique personality, a fresh perspective and a real, live work ethic will set you apart every single time (a posh English accent doesn't hurt either).

People Will Be Assh*les.

If you have anything that the general masses covet, people will let their jealousy run with the acceleration akin to a wild cheetah speeding across the great African Serengeti.

I know it sounds like the tiredest of clichés, but it’s oh so very true. Jealousy is a disease and needs to be properly managed by the person infected with it.

It’s always the envious girl filing her nails, whilst watching you innocently play from the sidelines, who relentlessly judges.

You might assume my mission is to counsel you to disregard their sorry asses, but, while it’s very tempting, my MAMA TAUGHT ME BETTER THAN THAT.

By observing my mother, I learned the invaluable lesson to throw nothing but compassion unto this bitter breed. Kindness will get you mind-blowingly far in a cruel, cold world.

In a society where the dark cloud of cattiness heavily hangs infinitely in the sky, genuine niceness is the burst of light everyone is longing for. When you simply listen to and invest interest in a mean girl, her guard will drop.

It's a far lovelier world when we can all coexist as friends.

Keep Your Nose "Clean"

Anyone who has ever laid two capable eyes on my mother poses the same question: HOW DOES SHE DO IT? “It” refers to how she looks so goddamn incredible for her age. Beauty, like money, is fleeting for most.

Some of the most beautiful girls to ever hold court in the atmosphere burn out so quickly because they're caught up in the flaming temptation of the “lifestyle.”

The girl world is stocked with a million little wicked temptations: drugs, cigarettes, poisonous relationships, STDs, anorexia/bulimia and the stress of keeping up with the Joneses'.

Too much indulgence in these toxicities can result in a girl looking a weathered 45 before her 21st birthday.

I learned from my mother that the key to looking YOUNG and FRESH past your due date is to practice the fine art of doing everything in moderation (including moderation).

If you throw back too much champagne on a single night — don’t kill yourself over it (stress exacerbates wrinkles, especially on the forehead).

Keeping a healthy distance away from the corrupted, drug-addled scene (uppers in particular, accelerate the aging process), EATING (being too thin will make you look at least 10 years older, girls) and diminishing bad relationships before they hit the surface, will keep you gorgeous well past your "prime."

Sexy Is A Girl Who Can Laugh At Herself

There is absolutely nothing more grossly unattractive than a gorgeous girl who is too focused on her cunning beauty.

The signs are ever apparent; she’s the girl who is more interested in gazing at herself in the reflection of your mirrored Ray-Ban sunnies than having an actual conversation with you.

She’s the girl who has a depleted, mundane personality because she feels she’s never had to “try” at anything.

She's the girl who is so obsessed with being “pretty” that she’s under the false impression that being fabulously silly is “unattractive.”

Oh, do I pity that poor girl. A girl, who can openly laugh at her own awkwardness (which every human-being has in abundance), display a hideous face for the sole purpose of entertainment and fearlessly make a total and complete idiot out of herself, is the finest girl in the world.

Laughing is an active feeling, and you will always remember a girl for the way she makes you feel — not necessarily the way she looks.

Beauty Has Nothing On Style.

It’s getting easier and easier to purchase beauty in this increasingly bizarre day and age.

We can buy silken-cuticle-sealed hair from India, add additional eyelashes cut from mink (which is totally f*cked, you really want to wear a slaughtered animal on your EYES?), a more voluptuous set of lips and boobs -- the list is endless.

Each and every day, I hear of a more extreme method girls will utilize in order acquire beauty. Everyone can be "beautiful" at this point (if you have the financial means).

My mom is truly mesmerizingly stunning, but more importantly she has style. Personal style is the outward representation of who you are.

Pretty is "nice"-- but having fabulous style will leave the image of you burned into the brains of those who have the pleasure of visually taking you in.

While style can't be bought, it’s a talent inherent in all women (but not all women have the courage to access it).  Know this, trust it and run with it.

I learned from my mother that owning your style is owning who you are — and thriving individuality is the at the very ROOT of true beauty.