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Were You A Real-Life Ugly Betty?

01/11/2007 at 05:00 PM ET

Do you know what it feels like to be smart, hard-working . . . and completely underrated because of the way you look? Then we want to hear your story! PEOPLE magazine is looking for real life “Ugly Bettys,” who like the character America Ferrera plays on the popular TV show, are “an ordinary girl – a slightly plump plain-Jane,” as ABC puts it. Maybe, like Betty, your intelligence, warm heart and hard work is overlooked because you aren’t as glamorous as your competition (a.k.a. Amanda).

How did you manage to get ahead despite your offbeat appearance? What pressures did you feel to fit in and how did you face them? What’s the meanest thing anyone ever said to you? Did you ultimately decide to undergo a makeover — and, if so, why? If not — how did you get people to take you seriously? What advice would you give to all the other “Ugly Bettys” out there?

Click here to submit your digital photos and a summary of your story, in 200 words or less, to PEOPLE. And remember: Ugly is the new Beautiful!

Photo: RON TOM/abc

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Showing 157 comments

Kiran & Velinka on

THE BEST SHOW OF THE SEASON!!!!! WE WANNA SEND A SHOUT OUT TO ALL OUR HOMMIES @ WHTC. UGLY BETTY RULEZZZZZZZZZZ……AND YOU KNOW IT…THE AGE OF THE BLONDES IS OVER!!!!!

GoddessLu on

Ugly Betty is FABULOUS. America Ferrera was 1st fantastic in “Real Women Have Curves”, an HBO movie out on DVD–rent it, but she is definitely the heart of a show that has so many great things going for it. It’s well cast, the lines are HILARIOUS and so well delivered by its very able cast. I love the Marc & Amanda & Betty dynamic, love Wilhemina, love Christine, love the Suarazes (the funniest Spanish family on TV). I hope it’s at least on for a few good seasons so that there are DVDs, which I will buy for sure! Need more Fashion TV please and less Sofia.

Beth on

I’m 5’6″ 120 lbs. I struggle to keep weight on because of a thyroid disease. I think America Ferrera has an enviable body. I definitely think inner beauty is more important than outer beauty. But I must say, I am treated very differently when I have done my hair and make-up and are wearing fashionable clothes, than when I am out with my hair in a ponytail, no make-up and sweatpants/baggy pants, people are much nicer, more inclinded to smile back at me, or even look me in the eye. And 5/7 days I have my hair up and I’m dressed in house clothes, I have 3 kids and a man to take care of.. and I wish I could always look gorgeous, but I definitely don’t!! And that’s okay too. The people who matter love me no matter what I look like.

Aja on

Admit it or not, almost everyone was an “Ugly Betty” at one time or another growing up!! LOL

“Ugly Betty” is a most wonderful show that let’s young girls know that being ‘smart’ will get you farther than being pretty. She’s only considered ugly because she works in a superficial world. It hasn’t dawned on those in that superficial world of size and clothes that brains got the coveted job with Daniel. And, really, “Ugly Betty” won’t be so ugly once (if) she gets rid of her braces.

I love that show……..and Wilhelmina is a hoot!!

Cheryl on

Yes, I was an “Ugly Betty”, but the opposite of Betty….skinny and not fortunate enough to get braces, not in the popular crowd. I’m over 50 now, lived through it..have the extra pounds now.
I love the show! I look forward to it EVERY week!! She is a great actress and she looked beautiful at the awards!

Kelsey on

Why is the show called UGLY Betty ????? I think she is the most beatiful person I have ever seen ! I’m 12 and I love fashion so I live on wesites like these ! I say change the shows name to BEATIFUL BETTY !!!!!!!!!!!

LAUREN on

I LIKE THAT GIRL CUZ SHE IS MY FAVORITE SHOW!

Annie on

Seriously? I think the shows great but come on. When Kate Winslet did Titanic and had some curves she did all this stuff about how you don’t have to be thin and now she’s lost all this weight and is just like every other hollywood star. How long due you think it will take America once she’s finished this role to start dropping her curves? I give her a few scant months.

a on

So why is it that we all feel compelled to buy into this idea of the “Ugly Betty” The only reason that Hollywood is able to make the standard for who is beautiful and who is not is because we let them by buying into it. It is so sad to me. Inteligent, hard working, and off beat does not equal ugly. Curvy a.k.a. healthy, does not equal ugly either.

Jen on

Since when did FAT become curvy??? I’m so sick of this trend, calling obese women “real” and overweight women “curvy” or “healthy.” You are kidding yourselves. Eat well, work out, take care of yourselves. Not only will you be able to wear smaller sizes but you’ll actually BE healthy. I’m no advocate of walking skeletons, but when fat women make themselves feel better with these ridiculous ego boosting terms it piss me off and isn’t fair to the portion of the population who DO work hard at keeping fit!

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