Seeing is believing: Plus-size models may boost body image
A new study shows that society’s seeming preference for super-skinny models may be only in the eyes of their beholders.
Preliminary research from Durham University in the United Kingdom reveals (yet again!) that what women see in the media shapes their views about their own shape. It seems logical, but it’s a message that’s only recently filtering in to top fashion magazines and couture catwalks – namely that if plus-size models are used in advertising and glam fashion shoots, women will find those body types beautiful and aspirational. And this may also have the side effect of boosting the self-esteem of average and plus-size women.
In the study, the more images of thin models the participants saw, the more they preferred that body type. Yet, when they were shown pictures of plus-size models, their preference shifted to that figure. What this reveals is that women have a much more diverse view of female beauty than our media portrays, and what we’re exposed to absolutely affects our definition of an “ideal body.” Follow-up studies with more women (and men!) are forthcoming.
Related: Plus-size fall fashion guide
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Tell us: Do you think that we’d all be better served by a fashion industry that reflected our true diversity?
Photo: Courtesy of Scenicreflections.com
Now if we can convince people that this is normal-size instead of "plus-size", then I think we will have less problems with girls having low self-esteem.
The fashion industry does shape how people view themselves. Not it is up to them to do the right thing.
People are beautiful in every size shape and color. Just because some people carry their ugly on the inside doesn't make them better, smarter, more talented or worth more than someone carrying what society deems to be ugly on the outside. We have to be tolerant of diversity. Be kind to one another, everyone is walking a hard road.
The other comment I would like for fashion designers is: Make small prints for us big girls! I don't like big prints that make me look much larger in pics! Plus make clothes with drop waists or other more flattering designs (Princess seams)! An empire waist makes me look pregnant and that's not the look I'm going for!!!!
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