Deciding to quit her job and set off into the world with all but a backpack and camera, Romanian photographer Mihaela Noroc began a journey that would lead her to photography women from all over the globe in their natural state of beauty. As diverse as the customs of each diverse society in a country, so to is each’s unique perceptions of what’s “beautiful.” Noroc experienced risky situations and at the end spent her entire life-savings, but the work proves itself well worth the risks. With the aim of creating a collection of work to show the diversity and meaning of global beauty, Noroc successfully traveled to 37 countries to see and capture what women believed and showed about beauty. Going from Cuba to Western Europe to China, and places bellow, above and in between, Noroc’s “Atlas of Beauty” reveals the that the overarching beauty ideal is to be yourself. “Maybe in 50 years all women from all around the world will dress and act the same. I hope my project will remain a witness of my era’s cultures and traditions,” said Noroc on her hope to preserve beauty in its rich diversity globally.

The compiled photographs were taken both in quick, street photography and private photo sessions with the subjects. The women she sought out were to be as natural as possible with little make up, unless it be dyes of a customary tradition. Though she has only posted her photos on Instagram for now, she wishes to continue her project of photographing authentic beauty.

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Images by © Mihaela Noroc