Body Image Issues In Modern Society

Robyn Lawley has been getting a lot of credit for posting untouched and and make-up free photos in protest of the airbrushing of photos in magazines and other professional photography. But, if you look at her untouched photos, you would never know that she is considered “plus size” to the fashion industry. If anything above an 8 in the industry is considered plus size then how should the 68% of women who wear a size 14 or above consider themselves?

Many women are lacking body positivity because of this. The majority of name brand stores such as vogue don't carry clothes over the size of 14. But as Kate Moss says, “nothing tastes as good as skinny feels.” In 2010 she got a lot of backlash for saying that. Many mothers were up in arms saying that she was invoking eating disorders into kids that looked up to her. Kids are very impressionable so most of their arguments against her were justified. Women magazines were chastising Moss for glorifying the idea of skinny women and encouraging many women to go on a diet to become skinny. Blogger were asked how could a women in such a spotlight say such a damaging statement? Doesn't she know that she is a role model to many young girls?

It looks horrible a first and seems to promote eating disorders and diets and glamorizes skinny women. But in all reality is it really any different from anything else that we see? How often do you see an ad in a magazine or TV or even on a billboard? Most people can't go a full day without seeing or hearing about something that is guaranteed to make you skinny. What makes a person prefect? Who is the perfect person? When ask people these questions they will usually name a beautiful actor or model who on the surface seems to be perfect. It looks like they have the perfect job, the perfect family, the perfect house, the perfect body. But when you really look closely at the facts, you start to see that everything isn't so perfect. To get that perfect job they are always away from their family. That perfect family you see isn't that perfect. They are fighting and getting a divorce but they act like nothing's wrong so they don't disappoint their fans. That perfect house never gets lived in and will be sold in a few years. That perfect body? That perfect body that so many people are envious of?

The body that has gone through eating disorders, diets, and workout plans that other people force them to do. The body that doesn't get a choice in how often they eat, sleep, or drink. Does that still sound as glamorous as it looks? It probably doesn't but you still look at yourself in the mirror and think “why am I not good enough? Why don't I look like them?” The media is still setting up impossible comparisons and you still feel like you aren't good enough. Even though most models are skinny and beautiful, many still aren't good enough for the fashion industry. 100% of fashion photos are retouched in some way. Usually, the eyes and teeth are whitened, any makeup or skin problems are corrected and hair cleaned up. Models are already skinny but many of them are made to look even skinner. Even celebrity snapshots from paparazzi are touched up. Photoshop can easily slim hips, or add to cleavage and make any change look natural. But why is everything touched up these days? Magazines are supported by ads and ads are about selling your product. If you feel good about yourself, then how many products are you going to buy? So advertisers have to make you feel like you need what they are selling by using unrealistic images, says author Jessica Weiner, who travels the world speaking to middle schools and high schools about their body image. For most girls, there are a lot of body image issues. They compare themselves to each other and to people they see on TV or social media. But often it's not just outside sources that cause body image issues, it can sometime be from sources such as your own family.

Many parents have gone through being teased and bullied over their weight and they don't want their kids to go through that. Numerous parents are concerned with their kids getting fat, but it is normal to eat more and gain weight during puberty, it just a part of growing up. Last year in the United States, over 300,000 teenagers under the age of 18 had some kind of cosmetic surgery work done. The most common procedures among teens are rhinoplasty (nose job), otoplasty (ear pinning) and skin enhancements such as chemical peels and microdermabrasion, usually to minimize acne scars. Many of them were following example of “reality” tv shows such as Extreme makeover, The Swan or I want a Famous Face. but, these kinds of shows are far from the truth. They emphasize on the results but don’t tell the whole truth on the cost, recovery and potential risk says Joseph Serota, a Colorado plastic surgeon. But, that number is nothing compared to the amount of people who suffer from eating disorders. In 2017, over 30 million people suffered from eating disorders in America alone. That is almost equal to 3 in every 326 people who suffer from an eating disorder. 95% of people who suffer from eating disorders are between the ages of 12 and 25. 50% of teenage girls and 33% of teenage boys will engage in unhealthy weight control. But many people are still trying to make the argument that the fashion industry can’t be held responsible for eating disorders or body image issues.

People claim that fashion is about the clothes, not the models. They say that if it was about the models it would be called style. But how many people actually know the difference between fashion and style. It is said that fashion is all about the clothes not the models because it doesn't go beyond the clothes. If that is the truth, then why are models always so beautiful. Why don't they just put the clothes on a mannequin at fashion show and let people look at the cloths that way. If it's not about the models then why is there a certain standard to be a model? That is a large part of body image issues because there is always a standard for everything. There is a standard for the amount of time you should sleep, the amount of food you eat, the grades you get in school, and the biggest one, how you look. Why does how you look have such an impact on your life? It's because we start comparing ourselves to others and start to believe that we aren't good enough. But we are good enough. We are all perfect just the way that we are. We don't need to compare ourselves to others and how they look. Be happy that you are you. Nobody can change that and no one should ever put you down for how you look. Everyone is beautiful in their own way. You may not always be able to see the beauty on the outside but there is always beauty somewhere inside of a person.

03 December 2019
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