Society’s beauty standards are slipping through the cracks of well-intentioned businesses.
Every second, the media spits out more unrealistic images of physical beauty into the impressionable faces of young people. Although men don’t escape the spray, women seem to be especially targeted.
One trend that has taken the media by storm is Photoshop, which allows anyone with the program to completely alter a picture to their liking. This results in young females having impractical expectations regarding their own appearances.
Don’t believe me? Just scan through the covers of some of today’s most popular magazines and you’ll see pictures of seemingly flawless women, almost all of which have gone under the knife of Photoshop.
Perhaps this is a factor in the distressing statistics regarding female insecurities. Fortunately, though, some companies are taking a stand.
Aerie, a brand that markets its underwear and pajamas toward female teenagers and young adults,recently started a new campaign called #AerieReal, which uses photos of models that have not been altered or retouched. Some have criticized this campaign for actually enforcing beauty ideals by using models who already fit our society’s standards of attractiveness.
Still, as reporter Roo Ciembrello so eloquently states in her article, “…in a world where Photoshop morphs already super hot models into super hot models with thigh gap and flawless skin and inhuman proportions… this is a step in the right direction.”
Furthermore, girls can now see Aerie models in all sizes on the brand’s website; by clicking on the size of a bra, one calls up a photo of a model wearing that same sized bra.
Dove, the soap company, has taken it even a step further. This year marks the ten-year-anniversary of their Real Beauty Campaign, which aims to portray women of all shapes, sizes, and colors as equally beautiful. Their ads feature a variety of women that differ from the stereotypical exteriors we are so used to seeing on our television screens. Dove was inspired to take on this project in order to inspire more women to be proud of the way they look.
There is still much work to do, however, as indicated by a 2011 study conducted by the company which found that “…only 4% of women around the world consider themselves beautiful, and that anxiety about looks begins at an early age.”
Although we still have a long way to go in terms of changing beauty ideals for young girls and women, at least some companies are willing to lead the charge.