TLC: Unpretty Meaning
Song Released: 1999
Make you feel unpretty too
I was told I was beautiful
But what does that mean to you
Look into the mirror who's inside there
The one with the long hair
Same old me again today (yeah)
My outsides look...
1TOP RATED#1 top rated interpretation:anonymous Mar 2nd 2008 !⃝
This song is about people who on the outside may look happy and put a smile on(my outsides look cool)..., but deep down they are filled with emotion and feeling bad(my insides are blue)...
The chorus means that you can fix up yourself to look as pretty as ever,if its for a boyfriend or whatever..but deep down on the inside you don't know who you are and wonder what is your purpose and may you feel not so pretty
2TOP RATED#2 top rated interpretation:anonymous Apr 19th 2008 !⃝
I think this is more than just being pretty and made to believe that she's ugly, it's about how her boyfriend has changed her, this is what she means when she says unpretty - she doesn't like who she is now because of her boyfriend. She says she only has herself to blame - because she's let this happen. I think the chorus is about people covering up who they really are not really about changing your features because your ugly. She says 'Maybe get rid of you and then I'll get back to me' this is her saying she needs to get rid and then she can be herself again. Basically I think the song is about changing yourself into something your not for the sake of other people.
3TOP RATED#3 top rated interpretation:
my interpretation of the song is that you should accept yourself the way you are and not allow anyone to make you feel "unpretty" in any way. "You can't buy your hair if it won't grow, you can fix your nose if you say so..." You can try to change your appearance to please other people but what's the point if you are not happy inside
anonymous Mar 14th 2023 !⃝
I think this song is heavily inspired by a politician's wife or a female from a politician's family.
You can buy your hair if it won't grow,
Hair is often used to symbolized roots particularly heritage, here buying hair is most likely overemphasizing or exaggerating something that is minor or not well defined. Like a Spanish great grandma who you never knew while she was alive but are "supposed" to be similar in spirit and manner.
Then there is the fixed your nose if he says so. Nose often represents face, appearances, or perceived image, on the nose; flaunting an image or behavior that is usually stereotypical, cut your nose to spite your face; denying a heritage or background for a cause or using a heritage or background to cause damages to the heritage or background itself.
Sounds like he is telling her to act or behave a certain way in public.
Every time I think I'm through
It's because of you
I've tried different ways
This is actually super common in PR and Image Consultant. One doesn't just prop up a fully developed image in public perception, one unveils in stages something uncomfortable maybe discarded for something similar as long as one image is overall consistent. Sounds like a newly married young wife of an ambitious politician or a young lady from a political family being groomed.
Finally this is sort of far fetched for me but I will leave it up to you to decide.
My outsides look cool
My insides are blue
While both blue and cool are words used to describe coldness, here it could mean polite but detached behavior. Which sounds like isn't her. Also something else that inside? Blood. Blue blooded is nobility and in modern day often used to pointedly at the higher income families and especially politicians.
I was told I was beautiful
But what does that mean to you?
Often before a press conference or something important the subjects would be fluffed etc saying something to boost their own confidence. "You are a confident, good looking, successful man." For females it's often "you are beautiful" but due to how commonly they are called "beautiful" it's often been cheapen to not be a confidence booster.
Very often these young females feel being beautiful is the norm and standard amongst the elite and they are just average among their peers.
Look into the mirror who's inside there
This in particular sounds like a mask that sometimes fits so well she often forgets she wearing it, other times it feels like a heavy burden upon her face, this makes her confused between the woman she is perceived to be, the woman she wants to be, and the woman she is.
Great song though.
anonymous Nov 3rd 2020 !⃝
this song is about that you may look a certain way on the outside however on the inside you can feel unpretty and insecure. Many people can relate to this song because everyone now and then is jealous and insecure because they dont look a certain way. However it also shows us that you have to feel pretty inside before it shows on the outside. Feeling pretty in the inside helps people feel better about themselves and you shouldn't change yourself because you dont look a certain way.
anonymous Jun 20th 2020 !⃝
This song is soooo how I feel about myself especially when I see girls who are skinnier than me I think I look broad and wide And on a girl that’s not attractive and I wish I was skinnier... so I feel unpretty :(
anonymous Jan 24th 2020 !⃝
I think someone can make you feel unpretty in so many ways. I think this songs mean something different to different girls who feel I pretty for different reasons. The way I apply to my relationship is my boyfriend is emotionally unavailable and I was at a point I felt happy without a man and now having one who doesn’t pay me any attention although he has told me I’m beautiful and I know it isn’t my problem it’s his, it makes me try to act out for attention try to be more physically attractive looking for ways to grab his attention and at the end of the day that’s not the solution and I grow sadder and more unperturbed on the inside. It’s just a metaphor for losing yourself to please someone else or to get their attention and it applies to each girl a little different.
anonymous Jan 9th 2015 !⃝
This song isn't about bragging about how pretty you are (as some of my friends thought) but this song is about having insecurities and how you can change your physical appearance, still knowing that the old you is still inside you hence the verse "I feel pretty, but unpretty". This song also tells a message to girls that everyone has insecurities but you shouldn't try to fix them because those flaws are what make you beautiful.
anonymous Apr 30th 2012 !⃝
To me this song is about trying to fit in,trying to look beautiful on the outside so other people will like you/accept you, trying to please other people but not being true to yourself and so not feeling good on the inside about yourself and not knowing who you really are and not being who you are around people. To me its also about pretending to look cool on the outside (apperances)but not really feeling it on the inside because its a fake feeling good and knowing you've only got yourself to blame for it by pretending to be someone youre not. The psychologist Carl Young did work on the persona - the image humans tend to portray to the world, the part of us we want people to see and how we want to be percieved by others and he also coined the term the shadow side. The shadow side is the part of us we dont want other people to see, the parts of ourselves that we dont like and dont want to own. Trying to look cool on the outside (just in looks) is like trying to portray this image to the world of 'i'm okay' but its shallow and superfical when it only comes from looks. on the inside looks have little to really do with how we feel about ourselves. so you can look hot but its not the answer to feeling good about yourself. and if you put out an image of yourself which isnt real to who you are/how you are really feeling, if youre not honest then probably youre gonna feel unpretty on the inside and not like this fake person you pretend to be. i think to feel good on the inside we have to love ourselves for our good and bad attributes and accept our shadowside - the parts we try to hide. i think the songs message portrays this human dilemma, and points towards the answer being self accepting of the bits we dont like about ourselves so we can feel good on the inside.
anonymous Mar 4th 2012 !⃝
Too many of you are describing the video, not the song.
anonymous Feb 10th 2012 !⃝
I think this song is about a girl who thought she was beutiful until she met this guy who didn't like the way she looked. so now she don't see herself beutiful.
anonymous Jan 25th 2012 !⃝
my interpertation is that everything pressures you to make to yourself prettier. Magazines, boys, girls-all of it. When i got my haircut, my friends kept saying that i was a boy. they would joke that i stuffed my bra, crossdressed, and they said that i wasn't telling them my real name, which they thought was a boy name. I knew i was suppose to laugh, and not take them seriously. but as soon as i got home from school, i'd go in my room and cry. I started wearing makeup to school everyday. I didn't have a boyfriend, so i didn't have anyone to go to. I didn't tell my parents becuz they might tell me to get different friends, which for someone of my social status-wouldn't be easy. I listened to this song about a million times when that was happening. Once i went to a school dance, and i wore crazy makeup and sprayed my hair crazy colors-and my friends kept commenting about my nose. it's a really weird nose. when i went home and cried myself to sleep. this song got me through those days. <3
anonymous Oct 13th 2011 !⃝
i think it is about body issues and how today there is all the surgery in the world that you can use to change yourself but on the inside you are always going to be you. no matter how you look on the outsid eyou have to be happy and fel pretty on the inside to.
anonymous Aug 2nd 2011 !⃝
What I think this song is about is how they basically say like i'm done trying to change myself for you && i shouldn't have to!!
anonymous May 24th 2011 !⃝
I like the interpretation they used in Glee, when Rachel and Quinn sang this song together. It may originally have been about a girl whose boyfriend pressurises her about her looks, but it's so much more often OTHER GIRLS who cause this feeling of 'unprettiness'. Girls look at girls who they think are prettier than they are, and try really hard to be like them. If there's a girl in your class that you find particularly beautiful, it can be really hard to look in the mirror and like yourself. But the truth is the same - you can get their make up and their hair, even their nose, but if you don't love yourself on the inside, it won't make a bit of difference and you'll still feel unpretty.
This interpretation has been marked as poor. view anyway
The song to me is talking about a young lady who has lost track of who she is because of a man. He wants her to change her physical appearance and has obviously been criticizing the way she looks. However, before she met him, she never felt those insecure feelings that are surfacing. Whereas she used to feel cute, she now feels ugly. On the inside, she feels sad and very blue even though to the eye she looks fine.
More TLC songs »
That Time Ronnie James Dio Saved Black Sabbath’s Bacon
What is a Left Hand Path? - Entombed and Swedish Death Metal
Song Analysis Corner: Convoy (1975)
What’s Up With Margaritaville?
This Album Links Duran Duran, Andy Warhol, and Kurt Vonnegut
Your Back-To-School Playlist
Blog posts mentioning TLC
|Eight Nineties #1 Hits You Wish You Could Forget|
|The Red Means I Love You||KaiseiNeedsSleep|
|Hard Luck Woman||anonymous|
|What A Fool Believes||anonymous|
|Somebody to Love||anonymous|
|To Know Me||anonymous|