Self Love Beauty spent time at Michigan State University this past spring to hear from women on what self-love means to them, how they became confident women and more! In partnership with MSU’s PRSSA Chapter, 18 women came together for our Beautiful Me photo shoot. They showcased the designs from the Beautiful Me shop and shared what these shirts meant to them.

These women all had different journeys, different stories and different definitions. It is amazing how we each have the same issues but different stories.

I was blown away to hear how these women have become confident woman through the process of finding self-love, so I had to share some of their thoughts: 

Throughout middle school and high school, I struggled with self-confidence issues. I was the weird, smart girl in school who did not always know how to talk to my peers, and while I had friends I still had trouble connecting with new people. By my sophomore year of high school I had settled into a good group of friends who cared about school as I did, which helped me embrace my academic abilities. I also joined the high school band, and found what I was good at; I was never really good at
sports, but I excelled in band. Performing gave me confidence and made me feel empowered and beautiful, and I carry those feelings with me through my daily life. – Allie Pail, 18

If I were asked to participate in this campaign a year ago, I would have never had the courage to say yes. In just a short amount of time, I have recognized that my worth cannot be measured by my appearance, the material items I own, nor by how well I am accepted by my peers. In focusing on those aspects, I limited my growth by belittling myself and refusing to escape my comfort zone. Since realizing where my real value is measured, surrounding myself by girls who lift me up, and believing in my abilities and strengths, I have been made new. – Edna Jordan, 18

I started volunteering at a special needs camp my freshman year of high school and it changed my life. The amount of love and beauty I found there helped me see the beauty in me. I was exposed to amazing beautiful young women who go through the greatest struggle related to there diagnosis and they embraced and loved themselves and found so much beauty in those around them! This
experience transformed the way I looked at myself. I have also been blessed with amazing friends who constantly remind me of my beauty in Christ’s eyes! – Sydney Evelyn Leonor Gibbs, 18

Growing up, I had always been shy.  I was the kind of girl who always followed the rules, got good grades and was involved in everything. My teachers called me SunnyD because I was always smiling, but I never felt truly happy.  I learned that it’s easy to put on a smile and hold everything in.  High school was not the highlight of my life.  It was full of cliques, mean girls,  and unnecessary drama.  I could not wait to get out and have a fresh start away from all of that.  My freshman year, I went to Central Michigan University.  At first I loved it, I was happy and felt like myself again.  Between studying, going out with new friends, joining a sorority and dating cute guys, everything was perfect.  That all changed at the beginning of second semester when I was sexually violated at a bar in Mt. Pleasant.  My roommates and friends left without telling me that night, while it was happening. I didn’t know what was worse, being sexually assaulted or being left by my friends, so I didn’t tell anyone about it.  I felt so alone and invisible.  The rest of the semester, I hid my feelings and was slowing slipping back to the person I was not.  I decided to transfer to Michigan State University and run away from everything that had happened to me.  So there I was again, starting over and starting from scratch.  I met some of the best people my first semester and I was happy again.  I think the breaking point was when I decided to major in journalism.  Never in a million years had I ever thought I’d be writing for my career, but it turns out that I have a pretty good way with words.  Writing has made me confident in myself and I love the concept of giving a voice to the voiceless.  Through my words, I want to empower women young to be the best possible version of themselves, leaving everything dragging them down behind. – Courtney Downey, 18

When I was younger, I had low self-esteem and worried a lot about how I compared to others. But by learning to focus on my unique talents and being the best version of myself I can be, I have grown in confidence. – Andrea Kelly, 21

First, I come from a low income socio-economic background, so I’ve learned to appreciate and find beauty in the more practical things in life. Including myself. I’ve learned to seek love and confidence within myself first before seeking it in other places. – Brandi Scarber, 20

I grew up playing sports and grew up knowing I wasn’t good at it. It took me awhile to be comfortable calling myself an artist and sharing that side of myself with others. Being able to JUST BE ME and having creative outlets has been life-changing. -Audrey Matusz, 20

I spent a lot of time alone with myself. I discovered what I like and disliked and took time to work in voicing that to others. Sometimes the lonely, sad feelings are exactly what you need. I had to address them head on to fix them, and now they no longer have a hold on me. -Kenedi Robinson, 21

A lot of my confidence has developed over the past year in graduate school. The experience has really taught me how to be assertive and embrace who I am. I think before I was more likely to let others speak over me, because I was polite and wanted to avoid arguing with others. Graduate school has taught me how to hold people accountable, and be more assertive. – Victoria Bowles, 23

I worked hard at it and persisted when I wasn’t fully there.  Growing up and having strong role models definitely helped.– Claire McIntyre, 21

This has been a long-time coming to get to where I feel like I can say that I am a confident, empowering woman, but I believe that it has been understanding the journey for everything that it has been for me to get me where I am today. Up until my second year of college, I had been quite insecure and always worried about how I looked, and worrying about it took up too much of my time and energy. However early on in college was when I realized what I wanted to do while being here- I started taking advantage of all of the organizations and opportunities at my disposal and getting involved in causes that are important to me. Making this my priority over worrying about things like my appearance has helped me become confident in who I am and love the person I am. – Neena Shah, 20

Learn more about the awesome things we are doing by visiting our Beautiful Me shop and checking out our stories! 

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