The Athletes Who Love Beauty

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There are certain stereotypes that suggest that if you’re into beauty, you couldn’t possibly be into [checks Google]:
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It’s all a load of BS of course—we contain multitudes! And right now we're laser focused on sports. Blame it on meeting the US women’s national soccer team last month, or the upcoming US Open this month, or our new memberships to Classpass, but we’ve got athleticism on the brain (and beauty’s always hovering close by). The thing about being an athlete and participating in beauty is that you only do either if you like to, otherwise there’s really no point. But that seems to confuse people! From those who police the looks of athletes and call them “too much,” to those who those who police in the opposite direction, and .” In either situation, what’s an athlete to do? Whatever she wants, of course. And here’s 10 on just how:

Florence Griffith Joyner, American Track and Field Olympian

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“Someone made a comment in the paper years ago that ‘she won’t be able to run fast with fingernails that long and her hair that way and those outfits,’ but I just want to tell them it doesn’t matter what you wear, it’s what you can do.”

Venus Williams, Tennis Champion and Olympian

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“I'll look at the pictures [and think] oh, I look so bad, or oh, that's pretty good, I'll keep that hair… as far as everyone else's opinion, I mean, if I would have thought that everyone was right, I probably wouldn't have left Compton. I don't get too caught up in what the next person thinks.”

Michelle Wie, Professional Golfer

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“I have Nike to thank for making me look so good on the course. If I’m not comfortable, then I don’t feel good. And then I don’t feel pretty.”

Serena Williams, Tennis Champion and Olympian

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“Venus and I started out being successful, continued to be successful, and we were also unapologetically ourselves. We were not afraid to wear braids. We weren’t afraid to be Black in tennis. And that was different.”

Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, Jamaican Track and Field Olympian

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“As an athlete, one thing I love is hair. I’m fascinated with hair, and I’m fascinated with colors of hair. [Even] before I was an international athlete, I used to wear purple and green… all different hair colors. I love being able to change my look.”

Francisca Ordega, Nigeria Super Falcons Forward

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“I see no reason why my own [extensions] and makeup [should] be your problem, and if at all it is then [please] unplug your TV and never watch again, because I will do more of that for the next game… Be ready to see more.”

Natasha Hastings, American Track and Field Olympian

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“There is pressure to look a certain way, but I feel that it’s a situation where you’re also ‘damned if you do, and damned if you don’t’. I’ve seen Simone and Serena get criticized for their hair or makeup choices. I’ve also had people think I'm not taking my job seriously because of my hair and makeup choices. So really, you have to decide what’s for you; screw the criticism.”

Shanice Van De Sanden, Netherlands National Football Team Forward

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“I really like having my lipstick on. I play with it, train with it, and I feel comfortable with it. That’s why I do it. Everyone talks about it, and I like that people talk about it. One time we played against Japan, and everyone was laughing about me. That was really funny. It’s something for me. I feel comfortable with it, so people can laugh about it. That’s fine.”

Simone Biles, Gymnast and Olympian

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“I do my own makeup for meets. My go-to is probably a wing, some mascara, do my brows, nothing fancy. Sometimes eyeshadow, but not a lot. [Doing my makeup] calms me down for the meet. I love the getting-ready process.”

Lindsey Vonn, Skier and Olympian

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“I feel more confident when I wear [makeup], and I think that comes across in my skiing. If you look good, you feel good.”