Sheila Atim: Everyone should embrace their own uniqueness
Ugandan star Sheila Atim says everyone should embrace their own uniqueness.
Sheila Atim urges everyone to just be themselves and “embrace their uniqueness”.
The 32-year-old actress was born in Ugandan but raised in Essex, Britain, after relocating at just five months off, and she admits she didn't attribute beauty as a quality to herself because of societal standards.
Now that she’s older, the 'Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness' star has learned to accept and love herself and she has urged others not to judge themselves or conform.
She told Elle UK: “Everyone should embrace their own face, their own body, embrace their uniqueness. Don't endeavour to look like somebody else.
"I grew up in Essex so there weren't lots of people that looked like me. In fact, there was barely anyone. When I was younger, beauty was something that I didn't embrace or attribute to myself; I felt it wasn't for me. I didn't think it was something that I deserved so I didn't care about it. I didn't want to conform because I kind of couldn't; I already looked very different to everyone else. Now I don't care but my irreverence isn't towards beauty itself, it's to the societal ideals of beauty. There's a lot more freedom in it now.”
In most recent years, there’s been a push for diversity and inclusion within the industry and an attempt to stamp out Eurocentric beauty standards. However, Sheila thinks more still needs to be done.
She said: “Representation has got better, and it needs to improve still, but it's made people like myself, and I'm sure many others, feel like we have more of a stake in beauty. Going to events and working with glam teams now, it gives me the opportunity to craft that for myself. I'm feeling more beautiful.”
According to ‘The Woman King’ star beauty is not just surface level it runs skin deep.
She said: “I think beauty is primarily about how you feel, I think it has to be. It's a feeling and a state of mind and body within yourself. I think most people have probably had the experience of beauty being about how other people perceive you and that doesn't really serve us anymore.”