How Many Layers Does Your Man Have to Peel to See the Real You?

Yes…a woman’s emotions are sometimes like an onion. You have to peel that onion to get to the core. You have to get through several layers to get to the real her…the real crux of what she is about. That said, how many layers does he have to literally peel to get to see the real you?

When he actually gets the opportunity to come close (not necessarily sexually but emotionally or even comfort level-wise) will he be in for a shock? Will he find a totally different person than you “introduced” to him when you first met?

In statistics, “Standard Deviation” is defined as the deviation or variation from the mean (average). In the context of this article, we are talking about when you are constantly so far from your “mean”…when you have so many layers to yourself that you now look far from who you look like naturally….and you depend on that always.

I am a guy and I do not know enough about what it’s like to be a woman so let me be the first to say that this article is NOT about telling you how much to do or not do to look pretty. I don’t even have the right to define that for you.

However, when the layers of makeup, the fake eye lashes, the hair extensions, the girdle and shapers, the one-size-smaller-than-your-actual-size bras for more cleavage volume, colored contacts, padded bras, acrylic nails, high heels and everything else comes off, who are you? Are you comfortable in that skin? Who is that girl? Do you think she is beautiful? Do you think she deserves to be loved by a good man? Do you think she is worth waiting for? Do YOU love her? Or do you think she is below standard…a far cry from what is deemed “acceptable”? Are you constantly covering her up so completely that she is basically unrecognizable? Do you despise her so much that you rarely ever feel like presenting her to the world?

This is a tough thing to talk about for most women because of the extreme and often unfair pressure that society puts on women to be a certain way. I don’t have a problem with taking care of yourself or adorning yourself to look pretty. The problem arises when a woman’s sense of self esteem and confidence is low when she is in her natural state, but shows up when she is “layered” with all these additional features. If YOU yourself don’t love “her” then no one else will. You’ll meet men who fall in love with the layers that you presented and you’ll end up frustrated that the man that you’re with doesn’t love you for the real you (without the layers) when the truth of the matter was that you led with the layers, you depended on the layers to “catch his attention” . “You wooed him with the layers that made you into a completely different person than the real you and now you’re stuck in that space.

Here is a message for the men though. One thing you must actively do is to help your woman detach her esteem from her “layers”. That’s not so say you should prevent her from doing things to look pretty, but you must work hard at helping your woman to feel self esteem WITHOUT the pain of high heels, oxygen draining shapers and layers of makeup and all the host of things they do to feel good about themselves.

Sometimes demand…(yes demand) that she wears little or no makeup, dresses comfortable, and then let her know how beautiful she is.,.how appreciated she is. She NEEDS that. Again , it’s not to say that she shouldn’t do the girly stuff to feel like a beautiful woman but she needs to be freed from the cage that society, men in her past and ESPECIALLY other women have put her in…the cage that says that if she is not in physical discomfort from the heels, girdle, painful braids, slapping herself in the head a hundred times a day because of the tight weave on her head , wearing hair from another race/country, wearing fake eyelashes, or if her nails are not a different color that what God made them in, if she has not used a flat iron or if she has not taken a picture in the classic standing cross feet female pose , she is not beautiful. Other women can be trapped in that cage…not your woman. No. she deserves better.

For reasons beyond the scope of this article, people (both men and women) ESPECIALLY women, get a very different response from the world around them when they look attractive (whatever that means. People DO treat them differently when they are looking good. But that should not be the case at home with you. YOU my man, should be the reason why she can go el natural and still feel like she can still maintain her full self esteem. YOU are her escape from the crazy world out there.

Now ladies, I know you liked that little section above with me telling the men to do this and that to help you build your self esteem. But as you know if you’ve ever read anything from me, you’ll know that I am more concerned with your growth than writing something cute. So here are some more thoughts for you.

It’s icing on the cake to have a man that works at making you feel great about yourself without the layers the world insists you must put on. However, the responsibility is still yours to take care of your heart and your mind. It is still your responsibility to love yourself the way you are. That’s not to say that you can’t feel prettier in makeup and all those fun girly adorning things…no that’s not what this article is saying. What it IS saying is that you must not hand over your self esteem to these eye lashes, heels, corsets, foundation or glossy lipsticks.

You see, once you already love yourself the way you are, you will always be able to present yourself the way you are as. Unfortunately, women who don’t learn to love themselves how they are always “in character” like an actress taking on the personality of that done-up persona. It’s exhausting.

Think about it…you go out to the world, all done up and layered, feeling and behaving confident, poised and secure. You come home, take them all off and your confidence, poise and security goes off to (This is not a generalization of all women. If the shoe fits…) You’ll put pressure on him to give you ALL the affirmation you need.

The compliments on how pretty you are, your hair, your eyes, your fitted dress all come and at the back of your mind, you know it’s all the makeup, the hair attachment/weave you overpaid for that used to be the hair of someone else from another race, the lashes you attached, the shaper/corset……and all the layers you have added to yourself to totally hide the real you…and then you come home, take them all off and demand that your man “Love you for you” and “Love you the way you are” and he secretly wants to say “Even YOU don’t love you for you”… “Even YOU don’t love you the way you are”.

So Sista…work on loving yourself more and more. Your natural self. Connect with her. Make her naturally beautiful from time to time. Hit the gym if you need to, eat better if you need to, but know that you are probably more beautiful than you allow yourself to think. You just gotta walk and talk like you believe that, and you’ll see the world respond positively to that.

Deviation from your norm is good but If that deviation has now become your standard of living, then you’re trapped in a life of Standard Deviation…don’t be. You deserve better.

Photo Credit: stock-clip.com
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Tobi Atte is the writer behind www.ijustmetme.com – For more on relationships, motivation, personal improvement and more, Like the IJUSTMETME facebook page, subscribe on Youtube and visit the website. Be careful though… You might get addicted. 

69 Comments on How Many Layers Does Your Man Have to Peel to See the Real You?
  • Amaka July 12, 2013 at 9:32 am

    This is so true.

  • Hurperyermie July 12, 2013 at 9:33 am

    word!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Cat on a hot tin roof July 12, 2013 at 9:57 am

    Who is this guy? Your write-up is A.M.A.Z.I.N.G.

  • MEENAH July 12, 2013 at 10:00 am

    thank you for this article.

  • Teebabe July 12, 2013 at 10:01 am

    so true…nice write up

  • chi chi July 12, 2013 at 10:07 am

    Preach.

    jewelzmag.com

  • EfKay July 12, 2013 at 10:08 am

    Hmm…I like this guy. Are you single? :D On a serious note though, this is a conversation I’ve been having with myself lately. I’m not really into heavy make-up and weaves etc and I think most of my male friends have seen me without make-up at one time or the other. My own issue is deciding which side of me to show to a guy first, or better still, where do I find a guy who will love my two very different sides? I am quite ‘tush’/’posh’ you see. Thanks to my upbringing I have a certain polish that’s hard to miss and that’s the side people usually see first. However, I am very much in touch with my inner ‘jenifa’. I love fuji and afro-juju and these days I find that I prefer speaking Yoruba. Most of my friends can’t connect both sides especially because I only recently became confident enough to expose my ‘jenifa’ side. Even family members are like “when did you become so razz?” I think I’m closer to my ‘razz’ friends but even they complain that I can be snobby at times. L’oro kan sha, I love me. But I think it will be challenging to find a guy who will sing along with Natasha Beddingfield and also ‘komole’ with Shina Peters.

    • bussie July 12, 2013 at 1:15 pm

      Lol @Natasha and Shina: seemingly opposites but you’ll find that guy and soon by God’s grace who would ‘get’ both sides and appreciate both too!

    • Your Unknown Gemini July 12, 2013 at 3:04 pm

      Rotfl! You sound like me and trust me he’ll find you soon enough…My own razz but tush man found me and we having the time of our lives. The difference is my own local girl is a proper igbo girl aka monica…she can sawam and shake am along to sonny bobo, osadebe, oriental brothers, princess njideka, dr sid warrior, prince nico etc and everytime i speak igbo some people almost jump with shock especially in the market (too funny to watch)…You sound so fun…Continue being yourself!

    • Grayce July 14, 2013 at 4:54 am

      LMAAAO @ are u single?u would be surprised that because he writes this article wouldnt make him what u want in a man…but shout out to him tho..I hope he does/would practice what he preaches for guys to do

    • aaa July 14, 2013 at 6:59 pm

      Refreshing! :D more people need to embrace all parts of themselves.

    • Tobi-ijustmetme July 15, 2013 at 12:25 am

      Efkay you are toooo funny! Yes I am married :o) and she is AWESOME :o) I am really happy though that this resonated with you. You see, many times, its not even about what side of you to show first. Its about carrying both well. many women carry their done up self really well and don’t carry themselves well when they are not done up…cos “that” girl doesn’t matter. Also, girlfriend about finding the guy????are you kidding me. ..if what you say about yourself is true that you are so comfortable with BOTH sides , then the right guy is not going to say “I like her better when she is done up” OR “I like her better when she is natural” NO. its going to be the guy who says “wow…I can take her to the Oscars and we can go to my village after. Lol. You know what I mean . You see, being so comfortable with yourself will actually help a guy breathe a sigh of relief that he is not going to be under constant pressure to help you keep up “layers”. Many women don’t think about that. They want to always present that done up side and they don’t realize is that men are asking hmmm is this how she is all the time and will I have to help keep this up. Soo…..youre good girl. Enjoy you. dance your fuji and speak your Yoruba and stay classy.!

      • T-gurl July 15, 2013 at 11:47 am

        Tobi, this is a very amazing piece. I’ve been having a talk with myself lately about not forgetting my true ‘self’ and to keep improving not just the look but also the content.

        Efkay, your response had me in stitches. Still cant stop laughing. I’m sure a lot of people can relate to what you’re saying. I’m a proper Isale-eko (Lagos Island) chic. I’ve managed to gain some ‘polish’ over the years. I still cant get over the shock on people’s faces when I speak yoruba or even decide to infuse some serious accent into it. (People say I dont even look like a yoruba girl)
        Like you, I worry sometimes about meeting someone who will accept my ‘many’ sides. From my serious yoruba proverbs, to my love for 1960s and 70s jazz and blues; my different weaves to my iya-eko hair! (lol); my love for dressing up (whole works – spanx, lashes, make-up, weave) to letting it all hang.
        I’m sure he’s just somewhere around the corner and so is yours!

        PS: I wear coloured contacts but that’s cos I keep loosing the colorless ones and I hate wearing my glasses!

    • Miss Anonymous July 18, 2013 at 11:08 am

      I can totally relate to you. There are people who have almost fainted upon hearing me speak Yoruba. In my car, you’ll find me listening to all the regular Naija music, fused with some Mary J Blige, Rihanna or Chris Brown. Some days Oasis, U2, Bob Marley or Marvin Gaye/Nat King Cole. On some other days I’m strictly Ebenezer Obey, Yinka Ayefele or even Fatai Rolling Dollars . Although I ‘ll admit a few years ago I wouldn’t be caught dead listening to Yoruba music. With age I’m embracing myself more and no longer embarrassed at being thought to be ”uncool”. And as for make up, over the weekends I just don’t care, I’m out without make up, ear rings or high heels. As long as I look neat, the other things are add ons IMO.
      I’ve also done the whole long weaves, fake nails, eye lashes thing, but this year I did the big chop and lost the talons and I’m loving it!
      In all I think ones personality, heart and brain make you you! The problem is as humans, we usually have too much in the way, and it sometimes takes someone who is really determined to dig deep beneath all the cover.

  • Dorcas July 12, 2013 at 10:22 am

    True talk. Thanks Bro.

  • X- Factor July 12, 2013 at 10:34 am

    profound thoughts here….

  • Mp July 12, 2013 at 10:40 am

    I rarely comment on bellanaija. But this article has pushed me to. Mr. Writer, you’re good. Thank God for who I am and fog giving me a guy that loves me the way I am. Am not a make up person like that. And most times friends around me get to complain about my simplicity. Was thinking on improving on my style. But with this article, my mind’s made up. Sticking to my simple nature

  • Temizzy July 12, 2013 at 10:47 am

    Finally a new piece fro m Mr Tobi Atte on BN *dancing azonto* Thank you for this wonderful right up. This is what I needed to read.
    P.S
    Am an addict to your site. Regards to your wifey, YES HE IS MARRIED*tongue out to all the single ladies* lol

    • Alexia July 12, 2013 at 6:41 pm

      LOL!!! You so cruel…

    • Tobi-ijustmetme July 15, 2013 at 12:32 am

      Awwww!! Thanks! Glad you are part of the ijustmetme family! look out for some great posts on ijustmetme (videos too) coming up starting from this week! Take care!

  • Esther July 12, 2013 at 10:52 am

    Lol…@ slapping her head a hundred times…. Guess we’ve all been there. Honestly though, on days that I choose to get all dolled up, I look and feel like I can take on the world and on those days I choose to go au natural, I still think I’m hot and I dare anyone to think differently.

  • blownaway July 12, 2013 at 11:09 am

    ….3 letters: W.O.W !!!!!

  • Toinlicious July 12, 2013 at 11:16 am

    Amen!

  • Eugenia July 12, 2013 at 11:16 am

    SO inspiring……..thanks

  • Zainab July 12, 2013 at 11:17 am

    Well said!!!!

  • Berry Dakara July 12, 2013 at 11:34 am

    Apart from my occasional wig (to give my natural hair a break sometimes), there are very few ‘layers to be peeled.’

    Makeup – only started wearing regularly, recently. and I like a natural look.

    Eye lashes – ALL MINE

    The hair extensions – #TEAMWIGWHENNOTLEAVINGMYFROOUT #INEEDBRAIDS

    Girdle and shapers – Ok, I think I need this one sha.

    The one-size-smaller-than-your-actual-size bras for more cleavage volume – :-0 Do females actually wear smaller bras on purpose?!?! I can’t o. “they” are LARGE enough already.

    Colored contacts – Sawry, but I’m not putting anything in my eye, much less anything colored.

    Acrylic nails – They look nice, but do damage to my nails, so I stay far far away

    High heels – I miss being able to wear high heels. Old age has forced me to choose flats.

    I must note however, that sometimes I do want to be like the Kim K make-up, heel-wearing, brazuvian hair-flipping, eyelash-fanning, almost-claw-like nehls-snapping, green-eyed, beach-balled cleavage (actually, I have those already), hour-glass-from-Spanx body-swishing gals.

    berrydakara.blogspot.com

    • Mz Socially Awkward... July 12, 2013 at 1:54 pm

      Hahahaha! I feel you on those heels, though and these days find myself sensibly going for 3.5inches and below (although I refuse to wear flats as work shoes. Na only pregnancy fit cause that one).

      But yeah, I don’t see anything wrong with a gal wanting to release her inner diva every once in a while and getting seriously glammed up with the hair/make-up/nails/body-con-dress effects (your cleavage, from description, will be killa in one of those body-con dresses). I see the writer’s point but personally, I like to look good always, hopefully not at the detriment of self-esteem but due to my job and the environment I have to work it, there is always with this adage in my head when I get dressed in the morning – “Dress how you want to be addressed”. Make up always on point, clothes always on point ‘cos ain’t no way, no how these oyibo folk are gonna be seeing my ‘Jennifa’ traits, even when we go for social functions outside work.

      With my home-skillets, dem know as I be local ibo gal…

  • jinkelele July 12, 2013 at 12:11 pm

    hmmm

  • Jay July 12, 2013 at 12:48 pm

    Lovely. tnx

  • what is sawry?? omo alata July 12, 2013 at 1:02 pm

    so you ae an old lady? what are you doing on this page then??

  • Bibi July 12, 2013 at 1:21 pm

    Wow! Bless you Tobi!

  • aunty July 12, 2013 at 2:28 pm

    eh heh!

  • PRINCESS ADUN July 12, 2013 at 2:47 pm

    Hmmmm on point

  • Annie July 12, 2013 at 3:06 pm

    Nice write..Just imagine the extra butt and extra hips stuff..smh

  • Odutola Roots July 12, 2013 at 3:44 pm

    Whoever you are God Bless You For This Writeup!

  • the special one July 12, 2013 at 3:48 pm

    too long and boring for an article, i actually dozed off somewhere in the middle *yawning* ok bye!

  • pynk July 12, 2013 at 5:10 pm

    I have come to conclusion that God didnt make a mistake when he created me. I dont wear weaves, cant be bothered, no make up etc. I remember about 7 years ago when i used to actively tan – i’m multiracial; i ended up with really burnt skin. My father asked me if i thought God made a mistake when he created me. Truth is a man cant make you secure, only you can understand your beauty and believe in it. I have come across women who werent “the most attractive” but i thought of them beautiful bcos they left me no choice but to see them in such light.
    Its all relative at the end of the day.

    • Grayce July 14, 2013 at 5:04 am

      I like that point u just made…”a man can’t make you secure”
      I see nothing wrong in wearing make up either…I see something wrong in people thinking that not wearing make up makes one a natural beauty…keep in mind that makeup is meant to enhance beauty…if you’re not already beautiful, there’s nothing makeup can do….I’ve seen people wear make up and still look…. *____*

  • tuush July 12, 2013 at 5:38 pm

    God i looove this write up, it simply amazing thank you.

  • Tiki July 12, 2013 at 6:31 pm

    Thank you! It’s refreshing to see someone whose viewpoint is not that dressing to the nines is bad, but that depending on your ‘warpaint’ for validation is dangerous. I like to dress up, but I think I’m more comfortable, more at ease and hence prettier, when I dress down. We all need to love ourselves at our lowest, so that from there the only way we can go is up!

  • Lizzie July 12, 2013 at 6:46 pm

    Exactly my take on life….

  • Mimi July 12, 2013 at 8:43 pm

    This takes Emile Sande and Labyrinth’s song See beneath your beautiful to another level. Well done Tobi

  • Adeyinka July 12, 2013 at 9:41 pm

    your write-up is so on point. for a couple of months now I”ve been wearing flats everywhere including weddings too. I make my weaves on month and the next month go natural. Believe me there’s no feeling that can be compared to being comfy in your own skin. without the extras. thumbs up to the writer

  • Jayne July 13, 2013 at 12:49 am

    Thanks Tobi…..At least someone out there still believes in being natural and seeing beyond the artificial make-ups….most at times,i stare at my make up bag and still cant believe i haven’t been able to finish my mac powder i bought about a year ago cos i feel so comfortable after applying my “ponds powder” *dusting my palms*….lol

  • koffie July 13, 2013 at 2:11 am

    I love this write up. I fixed my lashes once n had to remove it at immigration without oil initially, it was so embarrassing cos all these my egba people were staring at me like i was a druggie or worse. Let’s just say i vowed to never do them again. I feel Miss S Awkward on the heels ish, hia!

  • Eve82 July 13, 2013 at 9:12 am

    To every man his own. I say whatever floats your boat! There are no hard or fast rules to this one. I can leave the house all dolled up, at the same time, I am very comfortable stepping out with my face all freshly scrubbed. Being confident in who you are, and having that self esteem is what makes the difference.

    Btw all these men claiming that they prefer natural girls…if you see natural beauty, you will still not know what hit you on the face. Practice what you preach!!!

  • comment awaiting moderation July 13, 2013 at 2:25 pm

    Where was I to read this article late???

  • MeanJean July 13, 2013 at 10:31 pm

    Advice to guys, just hit that shit good and all the layers will peel by force. Great sex will do it. You don’t really know a woman until you’ve slept with her.

  • peggy July 14, 2013 at 2:13 am

    From my observations, going “natural” works for some but not others. It all depends on various factors such as your facial features, skin type, shape, how you look wearing your hair natural etc. Let’s face it some women are born naturally beautiful, others are not and if enhancing your looks gives you self confidence, then why not ? It’s common for people to feel unsatisfied with something about their bodies, but that doesn’t mean they don’t love themselves, unless there are some underlying factors.

  • optimum success July 14, 2013 at 1:07 pm

    good talk! I have tried that lately and am loving it..

  • Gloria July 15, 2013 at 12:30 pm

    Very True!!!!!

  • God dey sha July 15, 2013 at 2:10 pm

    Personally, I do just my eyes and lips on a daily basis. I reserve foundation, powder and blush for weddings and huge occasions. Since my hair grew back after the traumatic 6 yr secondary school low cut, I’ve either had it out natural (could be straightened though) or in braids. However, these are personal choices. I think having weaves on is perfectly fine for experimenting with different looks. And if you find one that works, stick with it. I don’t think it’s that deep. I never see having weaves or makeup on it as a self-esteem thing. I think it’s just a way to look different and you can change that look whenever. That’s why I don’t see the point of congratulating me for having natural hair as women in this obodo-oyibo are prone to do. It’s a look not a statement. I can change it anytime. That said, I agree with the being healthy part. Eat right, work out 4-5 times a week and stay healthy. The happy hormones will make you glow and the endorphin from working out is more effective than any anti-depressant.

  • Babious July 15, 2013 at 2:11 pm

    WORD!

  • proverbs31 July 15, 2013 at 2:19 pm

    In my opinion, it’s about accepting & embracing the way God made you. If you want to enhance your beauty, it should look natural. As a 28-yr old Igbo woman, I’ve seen so much hair weave amongst African women, and sometimes it looks ridiculous. Aspecially if we have African features but choose to wear long silky weave, colored contacts & spider-like eyelashes. It looks unnatural. I haven’t heard a man who says he likes weave or prefers it. If your husband is fine with it, that’s great, but it could be something that is keeping a woman single. If a man doesn’t like you when you are 100% natural, they’ll be another man who will like it.

  • Tim July 15, 2013 at 4:36 pm

    The writer of this article is a cheap -! you have no right to tell ladies how to dress and adorn themselves. In the part of the world where I presently live in, people do surgeries to enhance body parts to feel good about themselves. Plus the writer needs a english 101 class poor english structure thanks.

  • Naomi July 15, 2013 at 4:51 pm

    Lovely write-up! Kudos Tobi…

  • HOPE July 15, 2013 at 11:59 pm

    @ Tim:sorry, but i think you need the english class more than the writer does.
    GREAT WRITE UP. i lovvve my natural self more.

  • Bella July 16, 2013 at 11:35 am

    Great words well summed up,this writeup spoke volumes to my heart and further helped to justify my recent thoughts. Well done Tobi Atte.

  • Lolol July 16, 2013 at 6:07 pm

    Funnily enough I have this friend who always has on her honey colored contacts (she’s also black) and she accepts compliments on how unusual her eyes are all the time with a “Why, Thanks.” Lol! Honestly, I couldn’t be bothered. When I shower before bed, the face that emerges actually looks like the one that I went to work with. Look presentable and fine sha. And I don’t know who made this comment (too lazy to scroll up and check) but you’re right. I’ve never heard a guy say he prefers weaves funnily enough. It’s so strange but it’s true.

  • Lolade July 17, 2013 at 11:33 am

    This is amazing. I met tobi and his wife during RCCG convention Chicago, may God continue to bless u bro. Keep d eagle flying!!

  • olutayo July 19, 2013 at 1:02 pm

    Hmmm.

  • Wanluv July 22, 2013 at 9:13 pm

    I don’t think any BN write up has every brought tears to my eyes. In this day and ages when we are told we need to look a certain way to be beautiful, be a certain size to be beautiful… This is so refreshing. It is so important as you said to be able to detach your self esteem from the makeup, the weaves and all of that… True beauty is to be comfortable on your own skin…

    • Tobi-ijustmetme July 26, 2013 at 4:44 pm

      Wow. I am glad that it touched you that way. keep your head up and keep working on defining yourself outside of the looks. God bless!

  • TheTruth13 July 23, 2013 at 3:09 pm

    Wow! Beautiful piece, hit a few spots. The world of today and its pressures *deep sigh*

  • Osie August 5, 2013 at 6:08 pm

    I enjoyed the piece. Thoroughly. I like the fact that it emphasizes how these ‘layers’ should never be able to control one’s actions, inactions or reactions. I like the challenge it poses to me, as a person and as a young female.Thanks Sir.

  • Kryx August 21, 2013 at 6:07 pm

    @MeanJean and @Tim : you guys have really tried to rob this article off its shine, but am glad with the way fellow comments have snubbed your collective myopic reasoning and obvious lack of understanding respectively. @ Tobi, I’m glad you wrote this and even more happier that I saw this, would really help my baby see what I’ve beem preaching since day one. Amazing article!

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