If you were to do a Google search for “man + magazine cover” as well as “woman + magazine cover” the very first image that pops up on both is not the least bit surprising. The man is handsomely clad in a business suit and tie, while the woman is none the less beautiful, but wearing something a little less…professional. Now ask yourself, why is that? Why does the magazine cover of the woman depict her sexuality more than it depicts her as a person aside from her sexuality? Of course the first answer most people will come up with is that sex sells. As true as that may be, why do women more often have their bodies define them? Why is there such a pressure on women to have the body of a runway model?
Not very often do men get together at the bar and search for other men to pick apart and analyze from head to toe. However, I am sure all of you have seen or even been part of a group of ladies who spend a vast amount of time pointing out every woman that walks by and discussing what she could do better or the things they notice wrong about her. It has been a trending topic that women are seen more as “parts rather than a whole.” I am not going to say that it is wrong to notice a woman’s beautiful hair or the fact that she looks like she has such a healthy, toned physique that she looks as though she practically lives in a gym, but these aren’t the things most often talked about. What I think most people don’t realize when they are making comments about other people is that it hurts a lot more than just a few feelings. Many girls and women alike go home after hearing these negative comments, even those made about others, and begin to analyze their own bodies and notice everything that they don’t like rather than focus on the amazing person they are a whole. The fact that 58% of college-aged girls feel pressured to be a certain weight saddens me because there isn’t a perfect weight for everyone and I wish that more people would realize that.
It just doesn’t seem to be enough anymore that someone has earned a stellar career, drops off and picks up two kids on the
way to and from work, and still has time to come home and make dinner for their family. It is no secret that with the busy schedules of most people, it’s hard to balance everything you want and need to accomplish along with exercising and eating healthy on a daily basis. Body shape shouldn’t be a means to determine who you are as a person. The fact that you’re not a size zero or you have some natural body fat shouldn’t yield the power to fully define anyone. Let’s take Robyn Lawley for example, Sports Illustrated’s first ever “plus size” model. Now take a look at her picture, does she look plus size at all? She’s in fact a size 12, but that does not take into account that she is over 6 feet tall with an athletic build. This distortion on the view of what it is to be “plus size” is, in my opinion, absurd! Why does the term even exist? There isn’t a widely used term for people who are extremely small in size, so why should a phrase with such a negative connotation be used to describe women who are a little larger than others? It should never come to someone putting themselves down because of the numbers on a scale or the measurement of their waist – everyone is beautiful just as they are, even more so if they can project confidence without having a stick skinny body.
Never once have I heard a man be describes as not skinny enough so why should it be said about a woman? This may be like comparing apples and oranges, but I don’t think women should be criticized because they don’t fit into the status quo. They should feel empowered for having a unique quality but embracing it to still be fabulous! No one should ever feel as though they aren’t good enough simply because of the way they look. Each and every person is entitled to feel beautiful and wonderful in their own body and it is in no way anyone else’s right to make them feel otherwise. I don’t believe any woman should ever feel like they need to squeeze themselves into too small of a dress or feel like they have to wear as little as possible to be noticed. I think the saying that it’s good to leave a little to the imagination should be taken a little more seriously than it is today. One of the most beautiful songs I have ever heard that I think more people need to listen to was written by the magnificent Colbie Caillat and every women, young and old, should hear the message behind the words. You don’t have to be anyone other than yourself to be loved, you should never feel the need to cover your natural beauty up with makeup to be noticed. Those that don’t see your true potential really aren’t worth convincing, and you should never been seen as only a portion of the amazing person you really are as a WHOLE.