I’m Happy I Was Ugly In High School

At 16 I thought I was the shit. My friend’s older sister occasionally sold me Mike’s Hard Lemonade for approximately triple the retail value of them, my crush occasionally asked me for help in English which everyone knew was the step before asking me on a date (spoiler: it was not), and I had somehow tricked my mother into buying me a Victoria’s Secret bra, that absolutely no boy took notice of. But I blossomed, I grew, and boys finally started to take notice of my boobs… even when they weren’t in a leopard print bra with enough padding to act as a floatation device.

However, it was those long, hellish years I spent dealing with puberty, raging hormones, and being forced to live as an awkward teenager that got me to the place I am today. My brows no longer resemble little sperms, my acne has been taken care of, thanks to expensive skincare that I’m now expected to own because I’m an adult, and when a guy offers to buy me a drink at the bar, I no longer automatically assume that he’s trying to murder me (because what other logical reason would there be for a man to talk to me).

Recently, my brother told me that a girl he goes to high school with was working at a high end retail store. This store was notorious for only hiring girls who might as well be Instagram models. Not only were their faces physically perfect, but they were instructed to only wear the clothes that the store sold, that were all trendy and impossibly cool, I have to add. I couldn’t believe that this store would hire a sixteen-year-old girl to work there, mainly because when I was sixteen they gave me dirty looks for even shopping there.

After a night of drinking far too much, my friends and I dragged our hungover selves to mall so that we could swipe our credit cards and make more bad decisions. I figured it was the perfect time to wander into the retail store where my younger brother’s “friend” worked, and see how the store that I still felt like I was too ugly/immature/trashy to shop at hired someone five years my junior. When I walked in the door, I was surprised to see not only this mystery girl, but a swarm of equally beautiful girls of around the same age. And they weren’t the kind of pretty that my mom said I was out of pity when I was crying over the heinous acne all over my face.

As my friends and I browsed around the store, none of these genetically perfect mutants approached us as they had obviously learned at a tender age that they were too pretty to actually work. I overheard them gossiping about their boyfriends, parties and everything that I only heard about in high school through the “young adult” books that I read religiously because I didn’t have any friends.

Now before you start to feel sorry for me, I’m thankful for my ugly teenage years. Firstly, it was during those years that I developed a sub-par sense of humor (that some of you don’t always appreciate). What else are you going to do at thirteen years old when your mother refuses to let you pluck your unibrow so you take a razor to them the night before class pictures, and end up with a each brow being two thirds of the length of a normal human brow, other than make a joke of it? Sure, I was insecure for years, but it was during this time, I learned to actually accept myself. If I was still trying to maintain bronzed skin, and long blonde hair, I wouldn’t have enough time in the day binge Netflix shows and alcohol… and that would just make me a shit 20-something.

Maybe I’m just bitter that at sixteen I wasn’t able to have better makeup than most Youtube gurus, stylish, designer clothing thats so revealing my mother would have disowned me, and boys like me for something other than how freakishly good I am at math. However, I’m pretty sure that all of those years taught me something… and I don’t just mean how to cover up a volcano-sized zit. Besides…. none of these girls have had the opportunity to gain the freshman 15 yet..

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Hiding from my mother and standards, both of whom would disown me if they heard most of these stories. Aspiring law school student, with a chihuahua named Bruiser and a head of unnatural blonde hair. Email me your “crazy” stories or any mixed drink recipes that taste like juice, but have copious amounts of vodka in them at [email protected] Watch the bitch behind these stories at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vrp2D9h3SMk&t=67s

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A few years ago, I was in Beijing.

My parents are very good friends with this watercolor painter, so I was in his studio. He had a huge space on the 2nd floor of this four star hotel, next to Jianguomenwai. Whenever I go back to China, where I lived for six years during middle school and high school, I get sick. I feel a little angry at my body for betraying me like this, turning feverish and cough-y every time I land in a new country, but I’ve grown to accept it.

So I had a fever, in this cavernous studio, and my mom insisting that I drink tea to flush out the cold. They had a tea table set up in this studio, one of those gnarly wood ones with a little tube that drains the excess tea away. Do you know what I’m talking about? Maybe not. There are very elaborate tea rituals that I know I am offending with my big, runny nose presence. But there I am.

Various characters cycle in and out of this room. The wife of a government official. Some very humble apprentices of this painter who keep very quiet. Finally, I meet a woman in her 40s with braces, who we’ll call Madam. She wears a very expensive purple Moncler jacket, and soft slippers. She is a bit of a shaman. We start talking about health, as I’m clearly sweating, and she starts advising me. Madam gently tells me that I shouldn’t wear round neck shirts, that I should wear v-necks exclusively. She says it with so much love and care that I’m not even phased; I’m leaning in so close to her it’s creepy.

Madam talks about how she has a friend, who also has a round face just like mine, and after she stopped wearing round neck and cowl neck shirts, her whole energy changed. Her entire life changed when she started wearing v-necks. Maybe it was the jetlag, but I could not get enough of this conversation. Of course one’s life would change! This seems most natural!

Later, Madam shows me pictures on her phone of her friend. Glossy, dark, long hair. Round face, yes. And the deepest v-neck I’ve ever seen. Dangerously deep, like past the cleavage line. I had to admit though, it was flattering.

Madam shared her personal story: she was previously overweight and went through a “wake-up” transformational process. So Madam was friends with a woman, a beautiful woman. At first, she thought, since she is so beautiful, there is no way that she could be smart, warm, and wonderful too. But as she got to know her, she found out that not only was she beautiful, but she was wise and courageous and smart and loyal. That this woman was the best. I’m skeptical, but transfixed by this story. I quickly realize that I have some pretty judgmental, dark beliefs about beautiful people. She said to me in Mandarin, it is possible as a woman to “have everything.” She kept saying, “ke yi, ke yi” which means “you can, you can.”

So how it happened was that Madam went to sleep one night, and before sleep, she spoke to her body. She willed it to lose the extra weight. She imagined herself waking up lighter. That the fat would simply disappear. She woke up the next day 6kg lighter. “Zai jian, zai jian (goodbye)” and it was gone.

I tried it, too. When I got home to my apartment in NYC, as I was going to sleep with my cat at my feet. I closed my eyes, and whispered, urgently. Goodbye, fat. Goodbye. Did it work? I don’t even remember. Probably not. What’s important is that I so desperately wanted to be beautiful, that I was willing to whisper strange things to myself in my sleep.

I have some really, really beautiful friends. Like, gorgeous. When I was in high school, and if I would walk next to a beautiful friend, I would get a taste of how people would react to them. Strangers pausing, looking, making little comments, I could see how their eyes would pop a little. Whoa, I would think to myself, is that what it’s like to be that good looking?

In high school I had this insane crush on a friend. We had an easy banter and we would chat on AIM all the time. We got along so well. Months later I confessed to him that I liked him (definitely not something a beautiful girl would do, but alas, I was terrible at flirting so romantic confrontation seemed like a good plan). He let me down very gently, telling me that I was one of his best friends, but that unfortunately he just wasn’t attracted to me.

It’s like when you have a zit, and you convince yourself it’s not that bad, and no one sees it – and then finally a friend comes up to you and makes a joke like, hey that’s a REALLY BIG WHOPPER and you laugh along like, haha I know! But inside you are dying a slow, brutal death of hot-faced humiliation. OK I know I’m not Cindy Crawford or whatever, but holy hell, was it that bad?

I think early on, when you have those kinds of reinforcements of “you’re cute” or “you’re pretty” or “hey have you ever tried contact lenses” you start to come up with Plan B. Alright, so I’m not going to kill it on the physical attractiveness front, so I’d better sharpen my other skills.

Other skills might include: becoming really good at school, having a deep understanding / empathy of other people’s emotions, working really hard, getting good at sports (um, this is hypothetical, I’m terrible at sports), becoming president of the debate club (dork alert! That really happened).

This article will not end with a link to Christina Aguilera’s iconic 2002 hit, “Beautiful.”

But rather, I think it’s important to know what you’re compensating for. Do I feel the need to be the smartest person in the room because I believe I will never be the most beautiful? Did I feel the need to get an MBA so that I could have sustained earning power even in my 50s when everyone’s looks fade? And damn, that sucks. Because that comes from a place of fear and defensiveness.

When you come to my site, I’m trying to project my “brand” as smart, honest, trustworthy, in the know. Because deep down somewhere I believe that’s where I’ll have the most success. What if that changed though? What if I instead wanted my brand to be about authority and weirdly, maybe sex appeal? It’s not impossible. So my operations-mind starts making a short list of things I would have to do to reinvent myself:

  • Go to spin class 4x per week
  • Get Lasik
  • Japanese straighten my hair
  • Get a manicure, weekly
  • Wear a push up bra, or at least one with underwire you lazy fuck
  • Invest in lipgloss, the gloppy kind
  • Wear more red, and definitely more v-necks
  • Follow Kendall Jenner on Instagram (ugh)

Well, we know that’s never going to happen. I’m exhausted just writing about it, sitting at my dining room table in head-to-toe Gap Body. That I’ve been wearing. ALL DAY.

But, I do think we have a responsibility to examine and intentionally deconstruct closely held beliefs about ourselves. When you run a business (especially where you’re selling yourself as the expert, regardless of where you are on the narcissism scale) you need to have a clear understanding about the choices that you’re making. Which choices are being made because you still feel like the dork in high school that’s overcompensating? Which choices are self-limiting? Which choices are true?

I’ll continue to think about this as I get ready for bed, no whispering allowed.

I Was Ugly As A Kid And Then This Is What Happened…

James AltucherFollow Nov 2, 2016 · 3 min read

When I was 13 we had a class on square dancing and for the first time in my life I had to touch girls.

As we spun from partner to partner I heard each girl say to whoever was unlucky enough to dance with me, “You don’t have to touch him. Just hold your hand an inch or two from his.”

A few years later, I heard two girls talking about me. Do you see it? Do you see what’s on his face?

I had bad acne. But also bad cysts. From my eye, down my nose, across my cheek. Big purple blotches.

I had glasses. Braces — the kind with the rubber bands, the metal all over. Like train tracks.

I had tangled curly hair that couldn’t be combed and buck teeth and I was very unathletic. I was the last picked for every team. I was the one kid who played chess all the time.

The first day of junior high school, the first day of high school, I was an easy target for the bigger kids.

They were so big they were real adults. They had beards and flannel shirts and packs of cigarettes and got girls pregnant and threw desks in the classroom. And would also beat me up.

Nobody said…there shouldn’t be bullying. The teachers didn’t care. My parents had no clue and I wouldn’t tell them because there was nothing they could do anyway. And they were busy with work.

I would skip school as much as possible. Sneak across the farm in my backyard and take a bus into New York City and hang out in bookstores or chess clubs (like a tough guy should).

And I never went to the bathroom during school. That would be death sentence. No matter how badly I had to go I would hold it in. I only peed in my pants once during this time.

I’d go to the library instead of going to lunch. I became more and more shy.

And by the time youth spit me out into the outside world, I was desperate for any attention and any person who can help me inflate my tiny self-esteem.

I’d latch onto the first woman who kissed me. Then, the second and third. I’d be afraid to lose anyone. I’d be afraid they’d see the pimply, braces, tangly, unathletic, shy kid that was still buried deep inside me.

My therapist said to me the other day. You’re 48 now. We are all secretly still that 13 year old. You carry those insecurities with you throughout life.

You have to realize that you aren’t that 13 year old anymore.

OK, doctor, see you next Tuesday.

It’s the most wonderful time of the year, and that means – ugly sweater season is upon us! See photos of Bella Hadid, John Legend & more stars breaking out their ugly sweaters this holiday!

Once a year, the time rolls around where it’s not only acceptable to wear an ugly outfit, it’s encouraged! Ugly sweater season is here, and stars like Bella Hadid, 23, John Legend, 40, and more celebs have got the look down pat. Their festive fashion choices are next-level, and we are loving their horrible holiday getups! From obnoxious colors, to overstated embellishment, we’re looking at all our fave ugly Christmas sweaters from this year, and years past!

You would never associate the word “ugly” with supermodel Bella but that became the case in the form of a sweater which she was seen rocking while heading to a holiday party with her older sister Gigi, 24, in December 2019. Bella did her best to keep a low profile in her multi-colored top and oversized black pants and shoes that were nothing short of understated. Gigi, on the other hand, sported a green jacket over a red and white t-shirt, faded jeans and red shoes. Talk about the opposite of sisters thinking alike!

“All Of Me” singer John brought the heat in his own unique version of what an ugly sweater can be. The reigning Sexiest Man Alive sported an elf-themed sweater vest on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon in December 2019 that showed off his impressive physique. John was part of a hysterical segment where he belted out scentual renditions of holiday classics like “Jingle Bells.” Wonder what his wife Chrissy Teigen, 38, thought of his naughty ensemble!

Gwen Stefani, 50, got into the holiday spirit when she was seen in a blue and white version holiday sweater while doing some major food shopping with her man Blake Shelton, 43, in December 2017. The couple were spotted in great spirits while exiting a Los Angeles supermarket where their cart was filled with goodies in preparation for the days to come.

It’s great to see these stars get so festive! So, who wore the ugliest sweater of all? Click through the gallery below and decide for yourself!

Your eyes do not deceive you. Photographer Danny Evans has transformed America’s sweetheart into the homely middle-aged woman she might have been in the absence of a $141,037 beauty routine and an (alleged) nose job.

Evans didn’t stop at Aniston. The New York photographer has worked Photoshop magic on an entire swath of the celebrity crowd, converting everyone from Beyonce to Brad Pitt into ugly regular people. There’s Gwyneth Paltrow with a soccer-mom bob and a leathery wattle. There’s Becks in a sweater vest and Posh in a bad perm. There are the Olsen twins looking, well, every bit as uncomfortable as usual–but CHUBBY!–and, my favorite, Kanye as a short, fat guy in a barfy blue suit, awkwardly clutching Kim Kardashian as if they were posing for high-school prom pics.

Evans doesn’t reveal much about his process. “I don’t like to discuss the technical side of my work,” he tells Co.Design, “but I will say that they are photo composites, and not products of age altering software.” There is sweet justice in taking Photoshop, the very tool that makes celebrities seem so insufferably flawless, and turning it cruelly against them. The point, Evans says, is “to show celebrities in a different light. my interpretation of how they might appear if they were never famous.”

And spent their days hanging around the local Olan Mills.

Jennifer Aniston has revealed the bitter feelings she still has for her late mother Nancy Dow, two years after her death. And she’s implied that the feud stems from Dow’s focus on looks.

While promoting her new Netflix movie, Dumplin’, in which she plays the Southern beauty queen mother of an overweight teen who enters a beauty pageant, Aniston compared the role to her real life with her own mom. Aniston, 49, was famously estranged from her mom for years, reportedly right up until Dow’s death in 2016.

She recalled to The Sunday Telegraph about stunning Dow, “She was a model and she was all about presentation and what she looked like and what I looked like.”

The former Friends actress added that her new character of a mother who has a plus-sized daughter is reminiscent of her own upbringing. “I did not come out the model child she’s hoped for and it was something that really resonated with me,” Aniston said. “This little girl just wanting to be loved by a mum that was too occupied with things that didn’t quite matter.”

Dow — who was married to Aniston’s Days of Our Lives star father John Aniston –acted in small roles on TV as well as modelling.

Credit: Classic Retrovision Milestones on Facebook/Facebook/original owner(s). Jennifer Aniston, Nancy Dow, John Aniston and Telly Savalas pic.twitter.com/4rj0rejPTn

— FriendsShow (@FriendsShow) April 16, 2017

But her daughter was the one who became world famous as Rachel on Friends and then as the star of numerous movies. Aniston stopped speaking to Dow after her mom wrote the tell-all book, From Mother and Daughter to Friends: A Memoir, in 1999. The star was reportedly furious that her mother had violated her privacy.

Aniston didn’t invite her mother to her 2000 wedding to Brad Pitt, although they eventually reconciled after the couple divorced. But she reportedly hadn’t seen her mother in several years prior to Dow’s death at age 79. She had earlier suffered a couple of strokes.

However, as InTouch reported, Aniston attended Dow’s funeral service on May 27, 2016. As Radar reported, court docs after her passing revealed a bitter family battle over money. It was shown that Dow had completely disinherited Aniston and her half-brother John T. Melick III in favour of her favorite granddaughter, Eilish Melick, according to legal papers obtained by Radar.

Aniston told The Hollywood Reporter in 2015 about her mom, “She was very critical of me. Because she was a model, she was gorgeous, stunning. I wasn’t. I never was.”

“I honestly still don’t think of myself in that sort of light, which is fine. She was also very unforgiving. She would hold grudges that I just found so petty.” But now it appears Aniston is the one holding the grudge.

Fox News Flash top entertainment headlines for September 4

Fox News Flash top entertainment and celebrity headlines for September 4 are here. Check out what’s clicking today in entertainment.

Jennifer Aniston fans are upset that the 50-year-old star looks unrecognizable in her latest magazine cover shoot.

The former “Friends” actress appears on the October 2019 multicover issue of InStyle. The star is featured in a variety of looks and poses, in images released in advance this week to the official InStyle Instagram.


“Jennifer Aniston has been a beacon of American glamour for the past 25 years, and now she’s stretching her boundaries. In a series of five newsstand covers (just try to choose a favorite), she channels iconic beauty looks from the ‘60s and ‘70s,” the first image’s photo caption reads.


However, what’s getting more attention than the fashion from commenters is the fact that the actress appears very airbrushed in some of the snaps. A handful of commenters quickly seized the opportunity to call the magazine out for heavily editing the image.

“Beautiful cover, but why is she ten shades darker than she really is,” one user wrote.


“k but where is Jennifer Aniston? This ain’t her,” another wrote.

“Where is the lovely Jennifer Anniston? This photo editor should be fired,” a third user commented.


“She is gorgeous n has natural beauty. What u did to her on this cover is insulting to her,” someone else noted.

While there are several users lambasting the magazine for photoshopping the actress’ natural beauty, most of the comments across all five cover images are positive and complimentary toward the actress.


The star is of course best known for her role as Rachel Green on the hit 90s sitcom, but this year she’s changing things up by taking on an entirely new role in Apple’s forthcoming streaming series “The Morning Show.” In it, she plays a daytime host who is thrust into the public eye after replacing a longtime TV personality who has been accused of sexual misconduct.

“The show gives you a behind-the-curtain peek at a lot of things — what it takes to pull off a morning show, the unique lifestyle of these anchors, the obsession with celebrity culture, and humanity in the midst of corruption. Plus we’re addressing the ugly truths of how men have treated women in our society, particularly in the workplace, for all these years,” Aniston told InStyle of the series. “We’re looking at the ways in which we’ve all normalized this behavior and how we’re all by-products of our environment, having grown up with sexism encoded in our messaging, however extreme or subtle. This show looks at how a culture of silence can slowly evolve and how we sometimes participate without even realizing it.”

Ugly before and after

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