“Are you sure you want to eat that?”
I heard this phrase constantly growing up; from friends, family and roommates. I don’t hold this against them. As women, we automatically think to watch what we eat so we can be more “appealing and attractive.”
Media outlets consistently tell impressionable young women that if we don’t fit a certain mold, we are less worthy. Social media can sometimes feel like looking through rose-tinted lenses. Everybody seems perfect through the glass, but in reality, everything is harsher in the daylight.
We spend our entire lives looking at “perfect people” on apps. Through Instagram and Snapchat, people can use filters and Face-tune to make themselves look the way they think they should.
Recently, I went on a beach trip with people who think of themselves as “Instagram influencers.” It felt like the entire trip consisted of taking pictures for their Instagram accounts.
One girl used Face-tune on her photos to completely modify her body and get rid of unwanted fat on her arms, thighs and stomach area. She then took one of my photos and did the same, completely altering my appearance.
Body dysmorphia will always be an issue for me, and I know a lot of other women deal with similar issues. I have never been ‘fat’ by society’s standards, but I also have never been ‘skinny’. Being healthy has always been my main goal.
Despite the negativities, social media is also used to help promote self-love and body positivity. One example of this is Dove’s “Love your body” campaign. Directed toward women and their daughters, the campaign promotes loving your body.
Aerie is another company that promotes similar values. The “no retouching” campaign by Aerie began in 2014. Aerie also features models of different shapes and ethnicities. Most recently, they’ve included women with different medical conditions such as models needing insulin pumps, crutches or wheelchairs.
Everyone is all different shapes, trying to fit into some mold. Though some fit that mold, the reality is that most of us don’t.
We shouldn’t have to airbrush away stretch marks or use apps to get rid of unwanted fat. We should be able to accept one another and ourselves because none of us are perfect, we all have flaws.
It’s time to take off our rose-tinted glasses, step into the daylight and accept people as they are.