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Why I Won't Apologize 

for wearing grey contacts anymore

"You have beautiful eyes"

-  is a compliment I hear often.

Thank you would be the appropriate response. But mine is a bit different. It goes something like – "Oh, but they aren't real!"

Let me get this straight, my eyes are real. But I wear colored contact lenses. And I know that when people compliment my eyes, they're talking about the color.  Once I mentioned about wearing colored contacts, some said "Oh, they're still beautiful eyes", some said "the lenses look good on you." 

colored-lensBut there’s a third kind – people who look at me with a judgmental stare. I can see them retract the compliment in their minds and replace ‘beautiful’ with ‘fake’. Some even say it to me.

But here’s the thing – to me, my lenses are an accessory that I wear the same way one wears a gorgeous dress or shirt. But since they're on my eyes, many find it hard to comprehend how it's the same as wearing a piece of clothing. 

Although I know that the nuance of this is lost on those who judge me, I don’t want to be called beautiful and watch people change their minds about that in front of me. So I'm quick to let them know that what they're complimenting are accessories.

This has been going on for 13 years. I realized that I needed visual aid when I was 12. Glasses were always a temporary step for me to get to where I wanted – contact lensesI got my first pair of contact lenses when I was 14. My choice was the transparent ones, but my sister asked me to have fun with it and try on the grey ones. So my second set of contact lenses was sterling grey. 

grey-lens-on-Indian-skin

Over the years, I've tried on other shades – honey, hazel, and olive green, to name a few. But my favorite has remained sterling grey

Don't get me wrong, I love the dark brown shade my eyes naturally are. And someday, when I can't put plastic in my eyes any longer, I’ll be feeling just as beautiful with my brown eyes. 

I don't define beauty by the color of someone's eyes, the shape of their body, or the shade of their skin. And if you spoke to me for even a few minutes, you'd know what I consider beauty to be. To me, beauty is in the way people light up when they talk about their dreams. It's in the way they love and celebrate their people. It's in the way they can unapologetic-ally be themselves, from what they wear to what they say. It is the authenticity of choosing what they want to, despite what anyone else thinks.

colored-lens-in-my-vanity

I do think I'm beautiful. Not because of the color of my eyes but because I choose to be true to myself about what I like. Because I choose what brings me joy over what fulfills someone else’s notions of beauty. 

I wear my colored lenses for the reason most people wear clothes or makeup, because they like how it looks. Not because they think they aren’t good enough without it.

So I've decided to no longer strip away my right to be called beautiful. I'm learning that I do not have to justify my choices to be worthy of a simple compliment. 

Which is why the next time someone compliments my eyes, I’m going to respond the way I’ve always wanted to, the way anyone else would – thank you! 

Barunii Recommends:

 

Swati Coloured Lenses

 

Be your own beautiful!

 

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