Beauty and confidence go hand in hand, says Emirates Woman’s columnist, Diane von Furstenberg. This month the fashion designer reveals her philosophy behind inner beauty.
Confidence is the most important thing. I have dedicated my life to empowering women to have confidence. Through fashion, through mentoring and through philanthropy, I aim to help women be the woman they want to be. “For me, confidence and beauty have always gone hand in hand. You cannot have one without the other, because confidence is always beautiful and beauty without confidence is merely decoration.
“Confidence represents an inner beauty and a self-knowledge that cannot be taken away by time. I always say that the most important relationship is the one you have with yourself. If you have this, your other relationships will thrive and so will you. So what does it mean to have a good relationship with yourself? People always laugh when I tell them that I wink at myself in the mirror, or that sometimes, when I return home after a long day, I smile at myself and say: ‘Hi, Diane.’ But if we don’t love ourselves, if we don’t believe in ourselves, if we don’t respect ourselves, how can we ask these things of others? “After all that said, it’s hard to admit, but sometimes I lose confidence. There are days when I feel like a failure and there are days I feel like a queen. Interestingly, it’s the former that come to define us. Insecurity happens to all of us. The important thing is how we react. This is where inner beauty and the relationship with yourself comes in. You have to be able to reason with yourself, to be honest about your strengths and weaknesses.
“I remember when I was re-launching my company in the late 1990s, I’d been away from New York and from fashion. My business, which I had sold in the 1980s, was really in a bad place. I was so afraid that everyone would think I was a loser that I almost didn’t start again.
“But then I remembered something that my mother, told me: ‘Fear is not an option.’ I reminded myself of this, and I set out to prove that my success had not been a mistake the first time around. Now my company is thriving all over the world and next year we’ll celebrate the 40th anniversary of the little dress that started it all.
“I’m very grateful to be able to say that I have become the woman I wanted to be. Deep down, I always believed in myself and I was willing to take risks. That is the definition of confidence and, in turn, the definition of beauty.”
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DVF collection is available at Diane von Furstenberg boutique in Mall Of The Emirates as well as Boutique 1 in Mall Of The Emirates and Jumeirah Beach Residence boutique1.com
Complied by Jade Sprowson Pictures courtesy of Diane von Furstenberg