Naomi Campbell, Elle Macpherson, Cindy Crawford, Cheryl Diamond, and Twiggy, these are the names of only a few women who have been among the top supermodels of all time. These women are the role models of almost all young women and teenage girls, but these supermodel role models are presenting a real problem: a false sense of beauty.
According to the definition, perfection is: the condition, state, or quality of being free from all flaws or defects. There is a constant pressure for women to be perfect , even though it is truly impossible. As if the pressure of parents, guys, school, and maturing in general is not enough, we now have models to compete with. According to author Julia Savacool, “The fantasy body is 5 feet 9 inches, 115 pounds and 11 percent body fat.”
The average woman is “5 feet 3 inches, 138 pounds, 30 percent body fat.” The fantasy body is in the classification for anorexic. Anorexia is not appealing to most people, but being perfect appeals to all.
As a society, we have attempted to shape ourselves in the same way that our role models are shaped. In the instance of fashion, this means that we’re shaping ourselves after people who are influencing us to become skinny enough to where our bodies could shut down. The reason that our parents and grandparents are not shaped like Naomi Campbell or Kate Moss; they were raised when Marilyn Monroe, Hilda the plus size pinup, and Elizabeth Taylor were the women that people strived to look like.
These women were not overly skinny; they were shaped, not perfectly, but realistically, which is more than anyone can say for what society expects today.
I am only one of many girls who constantly compares themselves to everyone around them, but I wouldn’t have started to if I had not been made fun of at a young age for not looking right. According to supermodel Cheryl Diamond, “Being realistic and truthful in the fashion industry is not appreciated. We dispose of those who don’t meet our standards.”
The effect that the fashion industry and models have on society is deeper than most people realize until they step back and look. Supermodels are beautiful, built fantastically, and are some of the most idolized people in the world. I will argue that they have more of a negative effect on girls than positive.
If you don’t measure up to society’s standards, you become a human pinata for criticism. The current generation of growing girls should not look towards women that are expected to be perfect but, look to those who are expected to be real.