I saw this interesting video on Facebook:
This is a great video. It reinforces what we all know about the media industry: that it promotes unrealistic body image standards by working miracles with makeup and then further manipulating pictures with Photoshop.
The problem is: we all know this already. We know that we are bombarded by unrealistic standards of beauty, women as well as men. We know the industry has its tricks for creating these images, and we know that it’s unhealthy.
Yet we all still wander around perpetually unsatisfied with the way we look (and even if we’re satisfied now, we’re worried about maintaining what we have).
So here’s something you can do about it:
STOP BROWSING MEDIUMS THAT PROMOTE UNREALISTIC BODIES
Some of these messages we can’t avoid – like what we see in ads, for example – but some we can. And it’s oh so important that we do. Outside of the “You’re supporting an industry that shows these images, so you’re contributing to the continuation of these images” argument, you need to do it for yourself. Constantly bombarding yourself with images and articles about unrealistic bodies is cruel. Give yourself a break and stop.
Does that mean no more magazines? No more makeup? No more clothes? No more fitness articles?
Of course not. You don’t have to be self-denying hermit to build a better body image. You just have to critically engage with what you encounter, and evaluate how it makes you feel. If it makes you feel excited and empowered, you’re probably browsing a good medium. If it makes you feel insecure, needy, ugly, or like you need a certain product to avoid spiralling down a vortex of hideous, close whatever you’re looking at.
At the end of the day, it’s important that the things you are reading, looking at, perusing – are things that make you feel good, that support your goals, and that fit with your values.