Beauty, Identity & Body Image

How the media has changed the realistic vision of  "beauty" for today's teenage girls.

The above video shows how the media perceives beauty.

The above video shows all the advertizing the industry does for products that are suppose to make us look "prettier"."

The above collection of pictures show how most photo shoots go. The model comes in looking like a normal person (top left), then gets a ton of makeup and hair work (top right), and then after taking pictures, the photo is extremely photo shopped (bottom left), making the photo look extremely fake, and then the picture is finished, making an unrealistic image that looked nothing like the model who first walked in to take the photo (bottom left).

 All we see in the magazines are stick skinny models, wearing barely any clothing, loads of makeup, and a man plastered to their sides. What is this message sending us? Teens today are trained to think that the only way to look pretty is if you skinny and covered in makeup. What we think is 'pretty", is unattainable and fake. The photos in magazines are PHOTOSHOPPED, and are sending the completely wrong message to the young girls growing up today.
    When you look in the mirror, what do you see? Do you like the person staring back at you? Are you happy with what you look like? A recent study showed that
53% of American girls are "unhappy with their bodies," and this grows to 78% by the time the girls reach the age of seventeen.

Here are some statistics about body image:

  • 8 million people in the US suffer from an eating disorder
  • 90% are women/girls
  • 8 out 10 women are not happy with their reflection
  • 80% of children are afraid of being fat
  • more than 50% of 10 year old girls wish they were thinner
  • Americans spend more than 40 billion a year on diet and beauty products
  • The average American woman is 5'4" and 140 pounds
  • The average American model is 5' 11" and 117 pounds
  • In your lifetime 50,000 people will die as a direct result of their eating disorder
  • The current media ideal of thinness is achieved by less than 5% of the female population

Always remember to:
  • Listen to your body. Eat when you are hungry.
  • Be realistic about the size you are likely to be based on your genetic and environmental history
  • Exercise regularly in an enjoyable way, regardless of size. 
  • Expect normal weekly and monthly changes in weight and shape 
  • Work towards self acceptance and self forgiveness- be gentle with yourself. 
  • Ask for support and encouragement from friends and family when life is stressful. 
  • Decide how you wish to spend your energy -- pursuing the "perfect body image" or enjoying family, friends, school and, most importantly, life.

If you or someone you know is dealing with an eating disorder, call 855-429-2533

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