The Game of Beauty Standards, Which Could Give You Disorders
August 03 2021 · 4 min read
Would you like to get 1/3 of your feet or a giraffe neck, because people might consider you beautiful in some cultures of the world? You can attain them making your feet abnormally thin and wearing metal rings around your neck for years: only the person knows how much it hurts to elongate your neck like that. They are the beauty standards of China and some parts of Africa. Beauty standards are set differently in various cultures, but what remains constant is scaling a person’s beauty based on them.
Beauty standards today
Today when we talk about reaching social acceptability in terms of beauty we are supposed to have fair, flawless skin, no wrinkles, no eye bags, no acne, colored eyes, long legs, and curves in certain parts, six-packs for males,, and absence of every special feature that makes us different from others. If we have freckles on our faces or gap teeth that make us different, we are taught to hate them. When people, especially women, are given more admiration for reaching the beauty threshold it leaves all others pressurized to follow standards. As well as all else is thought of as ugly.
Do not get sick over, looking a certain way: your physical and mental health is more important
They keep on changing and getting modified. What was considered ugly a decade ago is considered beautiful today. And those whose confidence comes from the way they look need to understand that there is always someone more beautiful and smarter than them. Starving ourselves to get a zero-size figure, like the ones on magazine covers, does not make us beautiful. And those who starve themselves to look a certain way need real help.
We have a mental image of our bodies, it’s the way we experience our bodies. If we make a realistic image to perceive our body it has a positive impact on us. But if we have created an ideal image such as to attain an ultra-thin, socially prescribed body it can lead to depression, anxiety, and eating disorders.
Sometimes no matter how much effort we put in, our genetic body cannot attain our ideal figure. And when we do not reach the level of high-status attractiveness, the feeling of body dissatisfaction grows inside us. Then what we do is starve ourselves, induce vomiting, and exercise more than required. An individual is also at risk of substance usage sometimes.
Surgeries, Makeup, and Photoshop beauty
Fat shaming and anti-obesity messages spreading in society coerce those ideally unfit to alter their bodies. Such propaganda gives a false understanding of beauty and introduces options like going for various surgeries irrespective of the genetic and nutritional needs of the body. They think maybe having a lighter skin tone or dimples can make them happier. Thus, they search for self-esteem in satisfying the beauty trends.
The situation where one is suffering from health issues due to obesity, should not normalize obesity as beautiful. It can lead to further health issues. But even then it does not allow to fat shame such people.
What good beauty standards bring except making you try makeup and filter beauty. Now those beauty-centered look at the world through the lens of beauty trends. They do not understand that in the end beauty is temporary and has no lasting value. After all, he who dies with the most beautiful face still dies right? Unable to grasp this idea and to become photogenic people apply makeup. In our society women are generally expected to wear makeup anyway. Moreover, media has introduced all these apps with filters and other options to alter the real picture. And people love to remove their pimples, edit themselves to look thin, make dominant curves, and whatnot.
All of it stops them, usually women, from embracing their real selves. It prevents them from seeing beauty in whoever they are. Instead, they look at their body as an object which requires to be beautiful to be gazed at socially. The fashion industry has also cultivated these ideas creating standards in their industry. They look at beauty as real based on visible qualities and appearances, which are more desirable than others. No matter what culture we discuss, there always are faces more acceptable than others and above others.
Beauty standards change with what is representative of high social status. Today going to the gym, thin waist, a clear jawline, and staying fit is what portrays our ‘Photoshopped’ beauty icons. Filters and powder beauty which promises to erase our flaws and birthmarks makes it impossible to attain beauty normally. This fills us with the aspiration to get a perfect body image. It changes the way we experience and treat our bodies. Sometimes it becomes our only goal and not achieving it leaves us dissatisfied with what we have and blinded to see the true gifts we are given as our marks. Beauty standards are not worth getting the mental illness.