Body Image Weighs Deep

Illustration compiled by Kerrigan Arnold | Reporter

Illustration compiled by Kerrigan Arnold | Reporter

Kerrigan Arnold

“Body image is the way that someone perceives their body and assumes that others perceive them” according to “This image is often affected by family, friends, social pressure and the media.” It’s no secret that the perception of body image has a way of affecting the public – all ages and all sizes. Media should not put unrealistic expectations on what body image should be. In today’s culture, body image can take anyone victim.

“Approximately 91% of women are unhappy with their bodies and resort to dieting to achieve their ideal body shape,” said “Unfortunately, only 5% of women naturally possess the body type often portrayed by Americans in the media.” So, why is this? What causes women to look at themselves and not love what they see? Sure, it’s normal for people to look at themselves and see room for improvement, but to look in the mirror and be completely unsatisfied? That’s not okay.

Many throw the blame at the media. “Media can have a negative impact on self image. TV, movies, magazines and the Internet all bombard teens with images and pressures about what their bodies should look like,” said “The problem is, their version isn’t realistic. These images are airbrushed versions of models that weigh 23% less than the average woman.”

As a girl myself, I can relate to the pressure of needing and wanting to look like what I see on the screen and in magazines. Girls deal with these pressures daily. Do we look good? Do we look skinny? This is the issue. We don’t look in a mirror and say, “Wow, I look great today.” No, we look in the mirror and instantly pick out the flaws. We think to ourselves that, “I wish I was skinnier, I wish my face were more clear, I wish, I wish, I wish.”

“Usually the first thing I do when I look in the mirror in the morning is point out everything I don’t like – I know I shouldn’t, but I do,” said Kaylee DeWilde, General Studies.

It’s a constant battle within ourselves to look like what we see all around us everyday. “There will be times that I’m on Instagram and I’ll come across a gorgeous (and fit) girl and then I constantly start to compare myself to her,” said DeWilde. “Magazines don’t bother me as much. I know that those girls are photo-shopped.”

So how do we fix this? I think instead of the media giving out unrealistic perceptions of people, they actually portray the real beauty in real women – not those who have been photo-shopped. Now, with this being said, the media needs to publicize those who have good health. A bigger girl can be healthy, just the same as a smaller girl can be healthy. We don’t need to look down on those who are not a size two, just as we don’t need to look down on those who are a size two. It’s a cliché, but one that has so much truth behind it. Beauty comes in all shapes and sizes, and that’s what the media, and all of those who are affected by it, need to realize.