Thursday, November 3, 2016

12 Things Every Elegant Black Woman Must Know

In upcoming blog posts I am going to review the things that I have learned about being an Elegant Black Woman (EBW) and how you can become an EBW too. This is what this blog was originally all about--my journey towards achieving my goal of becoming a high-quality woman, despite my upbringing or lineage, so that I can attract good, successful men of any race (you can read, It's Time for The New Elegant Black Woman, my original post that explains why I started this blog). I have learned so much over the years and I have changed so much. I am treated better than I was in the past so I think that this endeavor has been a success!

The last step I have to achieve is settling down and starting a family but I am hopeful that this is just around the corner. Education and starting a career interfered with my romantic opportunities unfortunately so I was not able to "have it all" while trying to become an educated career woman (sigh). But now is the time for me to date and find someone to settle down with, who is grown up enough to want the same thing.

In reviewing my old blog posts I think that I can summarize what I have learned into 10 lessons that every BW must learn in order to become an EBW (I narrowed things down from 12):
  1. How to dress
  2. How to wear your makeup
  3. How to wear your hair
  4. How to smile
  5. How to speak
  6. How to sit, stand, and walk
  7. How to interact with others
  8. How to spend your free time
  9. How to date
  10. How to be virtuous

***UPDATE November 11, 2016. Visit this PAGE to view the l0 lessons.***

Some might complain and ask why are all of the appearance lessons listed first? I did this because when you are trying to make changes in your life, it is better to start with small easy steps. That way you can start with some early successes that can boost your spirit and give you the momentum you need to complete more difficult tasks. It is much easier to change the way you look than it is to change the way you feel and the virtues you embody. You could shop for a day or two and totally change the way you look. People are also likely to treat you differently based on your feminine appearance so you can benefit from the positive treatment right away. First impressions matter, and we all know as BW that we are often stereotyped based on first impressions, just because we are Black. Also, when a change is new, the reasons for some things may be complicated or difficult to understand. Changing your look to appear more stereotypically feminine, so that people assume you are feminine, is not complicated to understand.

On the other hand, people may not notice your personality or behaviour change right away so you could feel disappointed by that. Lessons 11 and 12 will take much more time to learn and practice. People are accustomed to women changing the way they look, but they are less used to women totally changing how they act, speak, and respond to things. It is in this area where many modern women will object, often due to feminism (let's be real, they would object to the other lessons as well). Also, unfortunately many people associate being well mannered, soft, and virtuous with being White and some may actually oppose these changes for BW. They will exclaim "just be yourself and do what's natural". The problem is that being ourselves and being natural has not been helping many of us, and while feminine behaviour is rarely questioned in other women, it is both expected and discouraged for BW at the same time! When we don't act feminine we are compared to non-Black women and told we are inferior, but when we act feminine we are accused of being self-hating and trying to be something we are not! My choice is to be feminine and ignore that haters because being feminine leads to better treatment by people who matter in my life. 

Furthermore, what is natural? Most of us learn how to act by observing others starting with our parents, siblings, teachers, classmates, and eventually people in the media. A child will observe these people and will often act in the same way. But what if a Black girl's role models are all highly masculine acting, aggressive, angry, depressed, uneducated, or poorly mannered? Then that girl may act the same way! Due to this negative influence, many BW will have to re-learn how to be feminine and undo the unhelpful behaviours they learned in the past. Self-improvement and remedial learning is necessary for anyone who didn't get the best training when they were younger. There is nothing wrong with self-improvement and striving to improve your life because nobody is perfect!. By leaning these 12 lessons you will feel better about yourself and other people will feel better about you! Stay tuned :)


  1. Just be careful that you are making changes for yourself and not to defy a stereotype. Regardless of what you do people will still view you through that stereotype if that is their mindset. I use to feel the way you do years ago, yet much has changed for me. One of the things that came from that experience is feeling like I was in the strait jacket of femininity. Now, I am my fullest complete self without the world dictating how I am suppose to be. That means I soft, hard, feminine, masculine, smart, loud, quiet, ect. I've experienced rage and vulnerability, have displayed my mechanical skills and slayed in dresses and makeup. In other words, I was and still am, myself. So unless you are trying to attract a very specific type of man, which I totally understand and more power to you, being yourself is sometimes the most revolutionary act, especially for black women.

  2. Well said! There was a time when African-American women projected a very feminine image, just as their white counterparts did. In a way, after slavery ended, it was the black family's way of saying that their women aren't workhorses and they deserve to be treated as ladies also. I see no reason to throw that away.

    Incidentally, feminine dress is frequently more flattering to a woman's body, of any race, than clothes that are a) loose and sloppy or b) so tight they look painted on.

    Looking forward to getting into your blog.

    1. Thanks Valerie,

      I definitely think feminine dress says something about what you do for a living and the role you have in society. Some may find this unfair, but I deal in reality not fantasy ideals. Thanks for your visit :)