After traveling the world, Jessica was back home in Los Angeles for last night's episode. She visited a high school, where she talked to a few female students about her journey — and their self-image.
Jessica admitted that high school was rough for her — "girls didn't like me very much." Some of he students talked about their body issues, and Jessica related to them. One young lady felt insecure because everyone on her dance team is thin and petite, and CaCee actually had good advice: "I would just be the best dancer out there on that team." I wish that all along, this show had spotlighted how talent, brains, generosity and kindness can be far more valuable than "pretty."
Ken, CaCee and Jessica urged all of the girls in the classroom to say, "I'm beautiful." If only it had turned into a dance number, with the ladies singing, "I'm Beautiful, Dammit"!
Panya, a woman Jessica met in the Thailand episode — who had severely damaged her face by using lightening cream — was flown in to take part in the finale, which involved a fashion show. Jessica and Ken — and some unseen makeup artists — gave Panya a makeover. For a "new Panya."
Panya was gorgeous after her makeover, but again: Part of me wished that the show had focused on the fact that she was a singer in Thailand before damaging her skin. What if we had heard her sing, and her singing was beautiful? Wouldn't that have added to the power here — instead of just marveling at the makeup and Ken Paves-branded extensions she was given?
The "fashion show" consisted of women walking down a catwalk, wearing clothes intended to represent the places Jessica had gone: Thailand, Paris, India, Uganda, Morocco, Tokyo and Rio. It was kind of like the "It's A Small world" ride at Disney World, only more creepy and awkward. Because are these women actually from these countries, or just dressed like they are? And did someone actually go up to this black woman and tell her she'd be representing the "Ugandan fattening hut" episode?
Also: three teenagers Jessica, Ken and CaCee had spoken to at the Los Angeles school they visited walked in the fashion show, wearing Jessica Simpson-brand clothing and accessories.
After the fashion show (in which Panya also walked), Jessica announced that she was "starting a movement" called Initiative Of Beautiful Me. Then my DVR abruptly stopped recording. Which was fine. Because this show has come to an end, and we've gleaned all we're ever going to get from Jessica's journey. She claims that she's learned that beauty starts from within, yet she felt the need to gussy up and adorn people suffering from low self-esteem. Of course feeling good can be connected to looking good, and women can find confidence in hair and makeup. And perhaps it would be asking too much from Jessica for this show to explore the construct of how we judge aesthetics; how beauty standards shift and change from era to era and culture to culture; and how there are people who manage to truly go far in this world — activists, scientists, teachers, revolutionaries — without caring much about makeup and fashion shows. But whatever. It's over, thanks for playing.
Price Of Beauty: Jessica In Rio, Plastic Surgery Capital
Price Of Beauty: Jessica Becomes A Geisha In Tokyo
Price Of Beauty: Jessica Wears Short-Shorts To Meet Veiled Women
Price Of Beauty: Jessica Visits Ugandan "Fattening Hut"
Price Of Beauty: Jessica Says India's People Are "Comfortably Beautiful"
Price Of Beauty: Jessica Meets An Anorexic Model
The Ugly American: Jessica Simpson's The Price Of Beauty (Thailand)
Price Of Beauty [VH1]