Beauty—Myth or Fact?

Asmaite, Writer

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  In today’s culture, many can argue that it’s harder to embrace yourself when you’re exposed to the media’s portrayal of beauty. A woman with a toned stomach and long legs with blemish-free skin is what we expect to see in our world  because of the media. But many don’t put two and two together and ask where these “perfect” women are, outside of television screens and magazine covers. It’s easy to see a pretty actress, and then think, “I wish I looked like that” or “If only my body looked like hers.” There’s a reason we don’t look like our favorite celebrities—they don’t even really look like that.

   Recently, Aerie, the sister clothing company to American Eagle Outfitters, launched the “Real” spring 2014 lingerie campaign, which uses models that have not been digitally retouched in their ads. It follows in the footsteps of Dove’s “Real Beauty” campaign ads, one of which tried to show women that they see themselves in a more critical light than the rest of the world. Both advertisements focus on promoting the idea of women feeling beautiful and accepting how their bodies look. These ads portray women in a more natural way; they don’t shy away from healthier body types, or attempt to hide curves and blemishes, which is completely the opposite of other lingerie companies’ ads. These ads challenge supermodel standards and move towards breaking the social norm of beauty. Women are realizing they don’t need to live up to the beauty they see in the media because they’ve come to a realization that they finally have something in common: being flawed. There isn’t one woman in the world who can say she is perfect, so with that being said, shouldn’t women just come to terms with themselves? Photoshop is just media’s way of exploiting teenage girls and women, making them believe that perfection does exist. The quicker we can accept that, as cliché as it sounds, imperfection is perfection, the quicker we can stop obsessing over stick-thin women and their “flawless” skin. Because of campaigns like Aerie, we can begin appreciating women for who they really are without modifying their appearance. Aerie sends message that being flawed is normal. By having real girls with real figures as models, it reassures women and girls all over the world that they are beautiful the way they are. This is the end to low self-esteem and self-loathing and the beginning of acceptance. After acceptance, there will surely be a shift in our definition of beauty. Because of Aerie, women and girls are becoming less reliant on outside sources and are finally defining beauty for themselves. Because of Aerie, this is now one small step for women, and a giant step for womenkind.

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Beauty—Myth or Fact?