By Caroline Bennett
Looking down at yourself, you realize that you will never have what it “takes” to be like the women you see all the time in the media. You get so depressed and obsessed with achieving the perfect body image that you go to extreme extents as a result. This is happening to thousands of girls each day.
Online, on television, in magazines and pretty much anywhere you look, young women who are shown through the media all have “perfect” bodies and gorgeous faces to match. The display of these particular women who often struggle themselves to get their bodies this way, is the cause of young girls feeling negatively about their bodies and being pressured to have identical bodies to these women.
Girls as young as eight and nine view themselves in a negative way. When girls see thin models over and over, they are convinced that the only way to be “beautiful” is to look like one of these girls.
Victoria’s Secret is one company where “thin is always in.”
Victoria’s Secret recently had a campaign for “The Perfect Body,” which displayed about ten models, all with the identical super thin and fit bodies.
The extremely thin models shown in the Victoria’s Secret campaign are promoting a very unhealthy way of life. The average model is 5’10” and weighs about 115 pounds. For that height, weighing only 115 pounds is extremely unhealthy, especially if you know your body is not meant to be that size.
Dove is a company that had a campaign for “Real Beauty.” This showed women of various heights and weights, all of whom are healthy and realistic.
Dove reached out to every different body type, skin color, hair color, and everything else that makes people unique. They showed skinny women, women with beauty marks, women with short hair, and other varieties. This campaign was extremely successful and it gave young girls, as well as women, the confidence they need.
Some people are born very thin and they become models, and that’s okay. Some people, however, are not born with “model bodies.” It is these people, who try too hard to achieve this “dream body” that do the most damage to themselves.
Looking at the same type of bodies over and over agin might convince you to act out and harm your body. The wise words “it’s on the inside that counts” that you’ve heard and devoured and soon forgotten, are replaced by the constant fear of not being good enough.
When some girls realize that they are nothing like young women in media, problems soon arise. No matter how smart, kind, or friendly some of these girls are, they develop a negative mindset and they can’t see how great they really are. Depending on the type of person, disorders develop–commonly anorexia, depression, and bulimia.
It is within their own privacy that these young girls become “obsessed” with the body image they want to have, and they will do whatever it takes in order to be successful. These diseases are serious and can lead to a life of misery. They are especially dangerous because they often remain undiscovered.
Do you really agree that this is the type of world you want your daughters, friends, and family members exposed to?
Upon researching why it is that girls feel the need to have perfect bodies, there was an article about positive ways to look at yourself and your body. At the end of the article, there was a series of advertisements encouraging all different forms of wight loss.
It’s okay to have advertisements that promote health and well-being for adults; however, when they are put on sites that young children view, it becomes a much bigger issue.
These advertisements are a clear example highlighting the constant pressure young children–most commonly young girls–feel in order to be accepted. Even when young girls go to see an encouraging article for a little hope, they are discouraged yet again by the advertisements following these articles.
Many people might say that there are “plus size” models for encouragement and that they are there to balance out the “stereotypical” model. However, these models are never in the center of attention–nobody really cares about what they model for and what they do on the weekend. In reality, these models are average weight and very healthy compared to the dangerously thin models in the big industries.
Still, the models who are selected for top-name brands and have shows every week are coincidently the women who are all over billboards, on television, and in clothing magazines. Again, these women are dangerously thin and they are influencing young girls in the wrong way.
To fix this problem, there should be more top models with all different and more realistic body shapes. There should be some skinny models, some average weight models, and some heavy models. This would show young girls that beauty doesn’t have a size.
The main message should be: you do not have to be thin to be beautiful–you should be comfortable in your own skin.