If you were to look up the definition of beauty, what do you think it would say? What do you believe it should actually say? Media plays a huge role influencing our ideas of what beauty is. It portrays an image that anything that pleases the aesthetic senses, especially sight, is beautiful. Most of the media’s idea of beauty could be considered distorted. Rather than focussing on overall qualities and characteristics of a person, we tend to base everything off of looks. This is causing many insecurities, depression, and eating disorders in women across the nation.
Magazines, advertisements, and celebrities give us a false sense of what we should look like. From a business perspective, you have to give the media credit. We all are guilty of spending unnecessary amounts of money on products to make us feel “beautiful.” Although this may work for our capitalistic society, the emotional effects it has on young girls self esteem, leave us with the question: What should the media really be telling us?
Socially constructed ideas of beauty have been placed into our heads since the start of playing with barbie dolls. But no one will tell you at a young age that a barbie body is not even possible. Barbie’s 16 inch waist would be 4 inches thinner than her head, leaving her room for only half a liver and a few inches of intestine. According to Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders, by the age of 10 about 81% of girls are afraid of being fat. As well as 95% of those who have eating disorders are between the ages of 12 and 26.
Most adults don’t even realize the media feeds distorted ideas of beauty into our heads wherever we go. A women sees about 400 to 600 advertisements daily. These advertisements are filled with unattainable images, leaving us to wish we looked differently. Body types in advertising are naturally possessed by only 5% of females, but these are things media will not tell us. People fail to remember that celebrities and models in advertisements have professional make up artists, professional trainers, and professional editors.
We can’t really blame society for these issues because we are society. There is nothing wrong with outer beauty, and it is important to carry yourself in a proper manner as well as take care of your body. But more importantly, the media should be focussing on more than just appearance. That is why bringing awareness to the issues we face with beauty in the media can help to push for a focus on inner beauty as well.