The 10 commandments of beauty

A plastic surgeon's advice on how to be as beautiful as possible

"Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it" – Confucius

Beauty is the most overused, misunderstood and poorly defined word in the English language. What makes a woman beautiful? In my opinion it is the Perception of Beauty. That perception differs individually, and factors like geographical region, tradition, society values and personal opinion all contribute to the definition of beauty. If we can't agree on what traits define beauty because we each perceive it differently, how can a woman discover her own beauty? I believe that it is a combination of physical and mental traits that make someone beautiful. It is a mixture of intangibles, a brew combining attractive physical attributes with important mental ones, like intelligence, wit and integrity. Every woman has these traits; they need to be recognized. It is this philosophy that dictates what I believe to be the 10 commandments of beauty.

1. Own your beauty

Accept and recognize the beautiful traits that you already possess. Then build upon that foundation by enhancing and maximizing your best features first. Learn to Accentuate your Positives.

2. Accept your genetic destiny and build upon it

Like it or not, good and bad physical and mental traits are passed to each generation. Instead of mourning the fact that you inherited your mother's wide hips, embrace and celebrate the fact that you also acquired her incredible grit and determination.

3. Accept the age you are and make it better

A healthy outlook: There will always be someone older than you and someone younger! We must abandon the notion that youth is the only path towards beauty. We have to embrace the fact that beauty transcends the decades as we age. It is a state of mind!

4. Stop whining, start doing

The incorporation of positive changes into your life to raise your level of beauty is an important factor because you do have control. Change is really hard though. Start small and work your way up. Maintain realistic expectations and set reasonable and achievable goals.

5. Avoid the quick fix

Shortcuts usually do not work in the long term. Avoid the fad diets or crazy cleanses that promise immediate weight-loss with minimal stress and fuss. I am talking about a lifestyle change that may take time, but will endure.

6. Major change = major investment

Most changes you may make to increase your beauty quotient will be deeply satisfying and help to motivate you, but remember that major changes don't come from minor tweaks. You need to find the time and effort to make the commitment needed for the kind of lifestyle changes that will bring lasting results and happiness.

7. Don't compare yourself to others

Each individual's beauty is unique. Each of us possess qualities that are beautiful. Comparing yourself to anyone else is an exercise in futility, and will only erode your self-confidence. Be happy with who you are and instantly, you will be happier and look better.

8. Don't get stuck in a rut

Your beauty should evolve as you do. It should suit your personality, budget and body type for your current stage of life. Finding your best look is an inherent role to increasing your level of beauty.

9. Streamline your beauty routine

Create a simple routine that works for you so you can dedicate yourself to do it every day. A solid routine that is rote and you know makes you look great is a wonderful confidence builder. Once you get the routine down you will spend far less money buying makeup and clothes that you never wear.

10. Count your blessings!

It is grand to look and feel beautiful, but appreciate how lucky you are. Understand that good health is so fragile. Embrace the fact that you are healthy enough to worry about your beauty! Understand that the journey to a more beautiful you begins with being grateful.

About the Author:

Robert Tornambe, MD

Medical Advisor, Trueself

New York City Plastic Surgeon

Certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, Dr. Tornambe has been practicing plastic surgery for more than 25 years. He is a fellow of the American College of Surgeons, was featured in NYMAG's "Best Doctors" issue, and was the Chief of Plastic Surgery at NYC's Cabrini Medical Center for 20 years.

For more on beauty, check out The Beauty Quotient Formula.