Portrayal of Women in the Media
Everywhere we turn, advertising is telling people, women especially, what it means to be desirable. Many of these messages share a common theme: women must be “beautiful.”. Women have always been measured against cultural ideals of beauty, but advertising often uses sexism to make images of “ideal beauty” more prevalent and increasingly unattainable. Twenty years ago, the average model only weighed 8% less than the average woman, whereas the average model today weighs 23% less. Most models today are thinner than 95% of the population. In a recent study by Dove, the researches found that out of the survey respondents, only 2% considered themselves to be “beautiful.” Many researchers argue that the unrealistic portrayal of women in the media can be detrimental to advertisement viewer’s health. Studies show that advertisements of ultra-thin women increases a viewer’s body-focused anxiety.
The question arises: can advertising be a reason that 1 out of every 4 women have an eating disorder?
The “Barbie Doll Figure” is literally unattainable, yet images of the Barbie-like figure are constantly show through advertising.
Just how thin is too thin, and how is society supposed to regulate? The portrayal of ultra-thin women is going too far. Sure I know the importance of a healthy diet and exercise, but there are also high-risk factors for being ultra-thin.