10 things Brigitte Bardot can teach us

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Brigitte Bardot, French actress and animal rights activist, is 84 years old.

Hundreds of pictures of the young, gorgeous superstar flood Google image searches. Her trademark blonde locks, short skirts and lots of black eyeliner defined the French beauty.

There are other pictures of Bardot on Google as well. These ones are not so flattering. Instead, her face, once one of the most beautiful on the planet, is heavily wrinkled and bloated. 

Fortunately, whilst her beautry may have faded, the fiercely independent and unique personality has not.

10 Things Brigitte Bardot Can Teach Us

1/ ANIMAL ADVOCATE
Bardot retired from acting at the age of 40 to devote her life to animal rights. She campaigned to save baby seals from being clubbed to death and for the more humane treatment of animals slaughtered in abattoirs. She attended anti-fur demonstrations and helped  abandoned pets in shelters as well as being an anti-whaling advocate (she has a ship named after her) and much more.

Despite the lack of public interest and big business opposition, she continues her animal advocacy unabated. 

We could all do with her determination and bravery in speaking on behalf of those with no voice.

2/ PRO-AGEING 
Bardot has eschewed Botox, anti-ageing creams and surgery.

If one of the world’s most famous beauties copes with ageing gracefully then we  shouldn’t worry about it either.

3/ ADMITS FAULTS
Bardot admits her faults. She confesses to hurting past lovers and family and to inciting racial hatred. 

If she can admit she’s imperfect, then so can we.

4/ STYLISH
Bardot was never a slave to fashion. She continues to wear lashings of black eyeliner.

She sets trends rather than follows them.  

5/ REJECTED HOLLYWOOD
Bardot didn’t care about Hollywood. She was never interested in a superficial Hollywood lifestyle. 

Bardot didn’t care about money or fame. 

6/ TAKES RISKS
Bardot has tried acting, singing, writing, modelling and dancing. 

She is unafraid of failure or of ridicule for doing what she wants.

7/ HAS REGRETS
Bardot regrets starting an unhealthy trend with sunbathing on the French Riveria.

She cautions people about skin cancer and ultraviolet radiation and points to her damaged skin as a warning. 

Most of us would feel humiliated using our weathered faces as an example but Bardot always considers the bigger picture.

8/ DOESN’T GOSSIP
Bardot has never spoken negatively about ex-lovers and husbands.

She hates the negativity of gossip.

9/ PATRIOTIC
Bardot is fiercely patriotic and writes to government officials and the media to keep the French ideals alive.

She often gets into trouble for her beliefs but she stands by them anyway.

10/ FELT HUNTED
When queried in a 1960s interview about her passion for animal rights, she responded that she knew how it felt to be hunted. Men pursued her for sex with a primal intensity that made her feel vulnerable, trapped and akin to prey. 

Bardot believes beauty can be a curse. No wonder she is unafraid to let it go.

Sue Bell

Sue Bell is an entertainment writer and author of Backpacked: A mostly true story, Beat Street and When Dreamworks came to Stanley.

2 thoughts on “10 things Brigitte Bardot can teach us

  • April 2, 2013 at 9:26 am
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    After reading this I googled Brigitte Bardot images. I do admire her stance on ageing – this is very brave in the current climate of obsession with plastic surgery etc. A very telling comment about the hunted feeling and how it gave her compassion for animals. Thanks for this article, Sue.

    Reply
  • April 2, 2013 at 5:14 pm
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    So true Merridy, her comment about feeling hunted is something that really struck me as an honest response to the downside of beauty.

    Reply

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