Unrealistic Expectations Of The Beauty Industry

Better Essays
Unrealistic Expectations of the Beauty Industry The idea of beauty is said to be intangible and completely subjective. Beauty is defined as a quality present in something that brings satisfaction to the mind. Advertisements and billboards often display an image of what society has deemed to be perfection, although the majority of average people feel this image is unattainable. Beauty products are incorporated into many people’s everyday routines, and the beauty industry often takes advantage of this in order to create an unrealistic expectation of beauty that can be harmful to one 's self image. Women in society are often pressured into conforming to unrealistic beauty standards. In America, the cosmetic industry is a multi-billion dollar…show more content…
Research has shown, “Beautiful people are treated more favorably and are regarded in a more positive light: they make about 10% more money, are apt to receive better grades in school, have more sex, and are more readily promoted in professional settings.”(Taga 6) Being beautiful depends on face symmetry, societal and cultural standards; therefore, obtaining beauty is just luck and genetics, so some people would argue that the advantages that beautiful people have are unjust. Taga poses the question “Strip all human beings down to the basics- food, water, and other human beings--would we still find some individuals more attractive than others?”(2). Yes, because instead of understanding beauty as something set in stone, humans tend to understand beauty through comparison. Although, typically women are more beauty conscious, according to Taga, “Women are the target of beauty campaigns because they are conditioned to believe they are inadequate without it- while women are kept busy attempting to push themselves toward the beauty ideal, men keep busy by climbing power hierarchies and gaining more control in the professional, economic, political, and domestic world.(4)”. While gender is a spectrum, and men do suffer from prescribed gender roles, it is obvious that men do not face the same societal pressures as women. Taga states that, “Male beauty standards…show more content…
Many struggle with their weight, and with a media culture that only features underweight models as normal, it can create a abnormal image of what we think people are supposed to look like. Cash explains that “While thinness might symbolize control and success in the minds of women who try to emulate the ideal, its unrealistic nature means that women’s energies are wasted. Women’s high levels of body dissatisfaction and the highest levels of eating disorders at any point signify problems with this cultural prescription.”(Cash 438) Standards of beauty are much higher for women and because of this, the pressure is greater for them to fit into the ideal body type. “The fact that eating disorders are gendered phenomena (women experience at least 8 times the rate of anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa compared to men) and that there is historical and cultural variation in the rates of these disorders suggest the importance of culture to their existence.”(Cash 439). An alarming number of women are even willing to go to the extreme to fit into society’s mold for them, “Women in the United States purchased more than 11.5 million cosmetic surgical and nonsurgical procedures in 2010, which is more than 90% of the total procedures performed.”(Cash
Get Access