The Beauty Experiment

The Beauty Experiment

How I Skipped Lipstick, Ditched Fashion, Faced The World Without Concealer . . . And Made Over My Life

eBook - 2012
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A fascinating memoir of one woman's journey to reclaim her sense of self-worth?and ultimately redefine what beauty means?through a yearlong extreme ?make-under."
Publisher: Cambridge, MA : Da Capo Press, 2012.
ISBN: 9780738215433
Characteristics: 1 online resource (249 p.)


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Dec 06, 2017

She purges her makeup and chops off her hair in a bold experiment to find happiness. Is she any happier? It does not seem so. She thinks time spent on hair style, makeup and wardrobe decisions are time wasters but I think she ate up much more time agonizing over everything.

Also, the footnotes on most pages are really annoying.

Glad this Beauty Experiment is over.

Mar 16, 2016

The idea is alright, but I don't think depriving yourself of necessiticies like good underwear need be part of a challenge like this.

Mar 17, 2014

I found the Beauty Experiment insightful, funny and eye opening. I related to her trials as a mother, dependent on a spouse for income as well as some of the challenges she faced with being a woman. I didn't care much for the survey aspect of the book, but it didn't harm it any. I give it 4!

May 06, 2013

Although the premise of this book seemed promising, I did not find it that enjoyable to read. I guess I prefer writers who use a bit of humour/wit, and this book didn't have that. I found the language unnecessarily overly complicated at times, with sentences that were half a page long. I was hoping to be inspired at some point, or feel motivated to do some self reflection...but that never happened. Even at the end, I was wondering what the point of the book was, it never really seemed to come together for me.

ksoles Apr 19, 2013

Living in stylish, trendy Hong Kong and preparing for a New Year's party back in 2007, Phoebe Baker Hyde thought she had achieved the perfect look: the perfect shoes paired with the perfect red dress tied in a perfect bow. When she gazed into the mirror, however, she only saw an inexperienced parent, an awkward foreigner and a shadow of her husband's successful career. She then asked herself: how would it feel to go a year without makeup, jewelry, salon haircuts or new clothes?

Then and there, "The Beauty Experiment" began with a vow to swear off the trappings of artificial beauty and the hope of revealing the author's inner beauty. As she further explored the connections between inner and outer beauty for herself, she also started to wonder: “am I alone in feeling and thinking as I do?” Thus, she designed a 44-question survey and posted it online from June 30, 2010 to January 4, 2011 along with a shorter survey for men. The results of this survey combined with personal notes became the basis for this memoir.

Baker Hyde's quest for self acceptance begins thoughtfully but becomes disjointed and loses the reader's interest with its repetitiveness. As is typical of the genre, the book's narcissistic tone ultimately results in tedious reading. However, the author does successfully show how perfectionism can block happiness, confidence, and serenity.


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Jun 07, 2012

I looked at my reflection and despaired. As an exhausted young mother I felt ugly and saw that a new dress or face cream would never help. I was at risk of passing on a habit of feeling miserable about my looks to my baby girl--if nothing changed.Soon afterward Phoebe Baker Hyde
made a vow: to give up new clothes, makeup, haircuts, and jewelry in hopes of revealing something she had always paid lip service to but never quite believed in--her inner beauty. The Beauty Experiment chronicles Hyde's quest for self-acceptance in nothing but her own skin. In thoughtful, exquisite prose, Hyde holds up a mirror to all women and shows how perfectionism can keep us from achieving what we really want: happiness, confidence, and serenity.

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