The Importance of Being Classy

Posted on September 2, 2010 in Specials

By Ayesha Khan:

Some people think luxury is the opposite of poverty. It is not. It is the opposite of vulgarity.

-Coco Chanel

It is a little too late in the day to ask, but where have all the classy women gone? Why are there no classy women in our generation? Where are the Madhubalas, the Maharani Gayatri Devis and the Sharmila Pataudis of our generation? This question may appear as a bit frivolous on the face of it, but think deeper and you will realise the importance of this virtue.

Class is the use of restraint and modesty, tempered with small doses of elegance and charm. Money does not bring class; in fact, it is the rich who are lacking this virtue the most. Many of the classiest women, such as Coco Chanel, have come from very humble backgrounds. It is the way a woman carries herself, the way she interacts with others and the way she presents herself to the rest of the world that signifies the class she possesses. Being classy is not about being stuck up, it is about having style and taking care to be polite to others and to reflect a genuine interest in them. It is also about being confident about oneself.

A classy woman chooses who she befriends carefully but is not a snob. She is genuinely polite and kind to everyone she meets She is careful about the words she uses and does not use profanities, or talk in a manner which attracts attention. She dresses elegantly without showing any unwanted skin or cleavage. In social settings, a classy woman would be one who would be ‘low key’. A woman with class does not swear gossip or slander as she realises the implications her words can have. However, she’s not a pushover and asserts herself in a way that merits respect. Such a woman takes utmost care of her education and realises its importance in her life. In all, she is a perfect blend of the best, a balanced individual.

Looking through this perspective, not many celebrities in the public eye would qualify as being classy. Most of them may dress elegantly, have knowledge about fine wines and expensive places to eat in, but that wouldn’t mean that they possess the grace and kindred of spirit that a refined woman has.

Most of our celebrities believe in doing the complete opposite. Their lives are prime examples of how one should NOT conduct themselves, case in point, Rakhi Sawant, Dimpy Ganguly, the wannabes on shows viewed by the majority of Indian youth like Splitsvilla, Axe Your Ex, Dare to Date, Roadies and such like.

Is this the way girls are expected to behave? Does being liberal in India signify the death of modesty and discretion? I do not wish to be sexist and will also hold the men guilty of behaving in a crass fashion, but a society where women cannot control themselves and behave with restraint, can really not be called a ‘civilised’ society in the true sense of the word.