Talk of diets and body shape is an all year round topic, but it definitely has its peak seasons and summer is one of them! The whole ‘beach body ready’ type of theme that runs through product advertising and advertising campaigns is at its highest right about now. Some ads will just body shame many in a very straight forward, obvious way and others are a little less obvious and prefer to use patronising manipulation instead. Neither of them are helpful but I’d guess the second tact could be more dangerous.
The thing is, a lot of products are now sold under the ‘be healthy’, ‘look great’, ‘be you’ and try to convince us that we absolutely must own this magical product or else we are are somehow failing at something. I’m unsure of what it is we are supposedly failing at, but it’d seem to be sort of, well ya know, life?
I am all for body confidence and I think it’s fantastic that people can do little things to improve their self esteem – nail varnish, body creams, pedicures etc. but I hate how much emphasis is placed upon someone’s appearance. If a person has a wonderful personality, is incredibly talented and has a heart of gold, we are almost led to believe that none of that matters because she isn’t aesthetically ‘good enough’. She is not deemed to be ‘beach body ready’. Someone who fits into the ‘ideal’ appearance bracket could be an awful person with a dull personality, a spiteful streak and be completely and utterly self obsessed, but according to these adverts she is what should be aspired to! Now, I know it isn’t as simple as this and most people know that, but some seem to be so blinded by the power of advertising and the media that they believe every single word…
There is more of a push towards body acceptance and being happy with who we are but there is still the constant push from advertisers to have the perfect body… People worry about their appearance, the advertising perpetuates that, people talk about their worries which often leads to more worries because it becomes a bigger focus point. Then there’s that doubt; what if they think I look… If everyone is, to varying degrees, feeling this way it means that everyone is doubting everything and feeling a little uncomfortable which is totally nonsensical! Society needs to change and to do that there needs to be more acceptance, more focus on health and less focus on judging others.
If you want to wear a bikini, then wear a bikini and if you don’t, then don’t. It should be your decision, it’s your body! There is no right or wrong and if you’re worrying about being ‘bikini body ready’..? Erm, if you have a body and you have a bikini then that’s pretty much it really, you just put it on *poof* and you are magically transformed into a body in a bikini – which technically is a step on from being ‘bikini body ready’ if you think about it! You’re ‘body in a bikini ready’ – so go!
If everyone spent more time working on the important aspects of a person, perhaps people would be less keen to jump up and judge, embarrass and hurt someone they do not deem to meet the criteria of ‘body ready’. To those people, I can assure you that when you’re saying spiteful things, bitching behind someone’s back, making snide comments and causing someone to lose their confidence; you look anything but ‘pretty’. If you can belittle someone and make them feel ashamed of who they are? Well, you may look nice on the outside, but you’re incredibly ugly on the inside and when your looks fade, that’s what you’ll be left with and that’s really quite sad. A pretty face will only get you so far and every single person is capable of so much more than being ‘just a pretty face’.