It's a time we should all remember fondly: When Christina Aguilera shot the music video for “Beautiful” in 2002, she was fully engaged in her Xtina mode — but it became quickly evident that there was more to her edgier alter ego than her sass, her barely-there clothing, and her seductive/sexual dance moves. As the fourth single off her Stripped album, "Beautiful" was extremely raw, and depicted Aguilera as a vulnerable, relatable individual with struggles that are often masked by pop stardom. However, the intense video that accompanied the single is what truly set it apart from many of her previous musical efforts.
Obviously this song and video spoke to anyone who has dealt with self-loathing, and no matter if the culprit for your emotional funk is a bad hair day, or the negativity stems from something much deeper, Aguilera’s “Beautiful” video is basically a visual pick-me-up. Through vivid imagery depicting a myriad of personal struggles, it aims to inspire tons of people to embark upon a path of self-acceptance. Whether the number one enemy you face is society or inner feelings of inadequacy that thrive in a dark corner of your subconscious, the video still delivers its message of acceptance for all, loud and clear.
It may have been a while since you’ve watched the “Beautiful” video, so allow me to refresh your memory. Here are eight things you probably forgot about Christina Aguilera's "Beautiful" video.
First, the video:
The Wilted Flower
The video opens with this flower, which appears to symbolize all those who were made to feel less than beautiful.
Her Facial Piercings
The Aguilera we see today no longer sports the facial piercings she was criticized heavily for wearing during her "Dirrty" days.
Her Black and Blonde Dreads
Xtina hair was in full effect.
Her Awesome Co-Stars
Their completely transparency enhanced the video's relatable, realistic feel, and reinforced the song's message that everyone deserves acceptance.
The Stance Against Mainstream Beauty Standards
The burning magazines made a bold statement that totally reflected the song's lyric, "You are beautiful, no matter what they say."
The Mirror-Breaking Scene
This scene of a young woman struggling with an eating disorder was one of the video's most powerful images.
These Amazing Smiles
The Revived Sunflower
The "Beautiful" video came to a beautiful, full circle close with a fully bloomed sunflower.