The depiction of an ideal body image in the popular media

A A A Icomment on We live in an era where obsessing over our bodies and our looks have become a daily activity. In mainstrem media the most beautiful are rail thin, have long hair and perfect skin. If one is pleasing to the eye, one is acceptable to society. However, the projected image that media places on women is a big controversy today.

The depiction of an ideal body image in the popular media

View the BMI Graph With the rise of mass media throughout the 20th century, the popular image of women in America has undergone a substantial change. From Marilyn Monroe to Kate Moss, the body shapes of the most admired models have remained consistently slimmer than that of the average American woman, representing a nearly impossible ideal.

This has resulted in a severe rise in weight anxieties and negative body image among women and girls. Dissatisfaction with weight is nearly universal among women, while dieting is pervasive.

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Girls as young as 6 are commonly unhappy with their weight. This trend has likewise been reflected around the world wherever this media culture has become dominant. The result has been the massive spread of previously rare eating disorders and lifelong unhappiness toward one's own body. The Gibson Girl The Gibson Girl, a creation of illustrator Charles Dana Gibson, was a synthesis of prevailing beauty ideals at the turn of the century.

The incongruous and exaggerated look was achieved by way of corseting, pinching the torso and waist significantly. Gibson Girls were portrayed as up-to-date on fashion and style, as well as physically active and in good health.

While the ideal originally began as the invention of an illustrator, the look was soon brought to life by various models and actresses such as Camille Clifford — winner of a contest to find a real-life analogue of Gibson's drawings — and Evelyn Nesbit.

Following World War I, this idealized image gave way to that of the less prim and more informal flapper girl. The archetypal flapper was an immature young woman — a teenager or young adult — who was scantily-clad and had little regard for uptight behavioral norms.

They were often described as independent, wise-cracking and reckless. Their easygoing style represented a rejection of the Victorian style and also came to emblematize widespread disagreement with the Prohibition movement. Their appearance was one of boyishness and androgynous youth, with minimal breasts, a straight figure without any corseting, and shorter hair.

Flashing of the ankles, knees and legs was a common feature of flappers — dresses and skirts in the style were designed to be loose and reveal the legs when women would dance to jazz, popular among flappers.

Bare arms were likewise nearly universal. Larger busts were frowned upon, and bras were made to tighten so as to flatten the chest.

View the BMI Graph With the rise of mass media throughout the 20th century, the popular image of women in America has undergone a substantial change. From Marilyn Monroe to Kate Moss, the body shapes of the most admired models have remained consistently slimmer than that of the average American woman, representing a nearly impossible ideal.
A noblewoman during the Italian Renaissance. Society often constructs our behaviours and beliefs, such as personal developments, physiological and psychological interactions, and the common "perception of our bodies as a reflection of self worth".
We see images of perfect bodies all around us, on television, in movies, in newspaper and magazine ads and online. Reporters and gossip columnists even comment on the appearance of people in the news and political figures.
Here are the ideal types broken down by place in time: In this era, the ideal woman is described as:

Blush, dark eye makeup, and substantial lips were in style, as well as tanning; a sporty and healthy appearance was prized. The ideal of thinness and an enhanced appearance often drove women of the s to diet and exercise in order to achieve this look, as well as buying cosmetics.

The look to aspire to was increasingly depicted in advertisements. This freewheeling lifestyle came to an end with the onset of the Great Depression.

Fashion in Wartime The impact of the Great Depression brought a more traditional style back to women's fashion and body image. Though short hair remained commonplace, skirts once again became longer, and clothing that showed off a natural waist was in style.

Shoulder width was particularly emphasized, and the prevailing shape at the time became starker, highlighting the specific contours of the body rather than draping and disguising them in softness. With America's involvement in World War II came wartime requisitioning of fashion materials such as silk, nylon, and clothing dye.

Women's attire therefore trended toward practicality, with simple blouses and un-elaborate jackets becoming predominant. Women even received instructions on how to tailor the unused suits of men away in combat, remaking them into everyday women's wear.

And in contrast to the lean boyish flapper style, women now aspired to become more curvaceous and emphasize their feminine figure. In particular, advertisements now told women how they could avoid a too-skinny look. In this era, the celebrity image was almost within reach of the average woman.

The depiction of an ideal body image in the popular media

While American women had an average BMI of Post-War The ideal body image for women remained fuller-figured in the post-war period of the s. A busty, voluptuous hourglass look was prized, as exhibited by models such as Marilyn Monroe and Grace Kelly. The increasing popularity of Hollywood films helped propel glamour models like Monroe to widespread public consciousness, and combined with the increased freedom of material after the end of wartime rationing, women's fashion options were once again extensive.

However, this expansion in options now meant that women were expected to take full advantage of beauty products and never leave the home without looking their best.enduring nature of social media websites result perhaps in a wider and more detrimental impact to the body image concerns of college aged women than advertising or the media generally.

Social organizations online have become very popular in the last few years, as hoards of women have taken to platforms like Tumblr to talk about body image and reject our culture's body shame. Perceptions surrounding beauty and body types not only vary by culture, but have greatly evolved over the span of time.

In a visually dynamic attempt to recreate this evolution, BuzzFeed Video showcased a diverse cast of models to depict over 3, years of women’s ideal body types by each society’s standard of beauty. Much of the research pertaining to how the media effects body image examines the change in models and magazine articles over time.

Breaking Down the Media's Distorted Views on Beauty | HuffPost

Garner, Garfinkel, Schwartz, and Thompson paid particular attention to the difference in body shape of Playboy centerfolds over a year period. The danger of body modification is that bodies are not recyclable, the ideal image of beauty is perpetually changing and fleeting, and trying to keep up with it is both harmful and impossible.

When the media gain power, women inevitably lose it. History Of Body Image In America: How The ‘Ideal’ Female And Male Body Has Changed Over Time Nov 6, AM By Lecia Bushak "The Large Bathers" was painted by Pierre-Auguste Renoir in , depicting an ideal female form in the late 19th century.

The Media and Body Image