Home Leisure & Lifestyle Media-Driven Beauty Ideals Challenge Self-Esteem. This Needs Positive Self-Acceptance Strategies

Media-Driven Beauty Ideals Challenge Self-Esteem. This Needs Positive Self-Acceptance Strategies

Reading Time: 2 minutes

In a world awash with filters, likes, and trending hashtags, our notions of beauty are constantly evolving. Social media, glossy magazines, and the glittering realm of celebrity have taken the driver’s seat in dictating what’s “in” and what’s not. This isn’t just about the latest fashion or makeup trend; it’s deeply personal. The way we perceive beauty has become intertwined with our self-worth, playing a pivotal role in our daily lives. As society’s beauty barometer shifts, so do our perceptions of ourselves, with profound implications for our confidence and overall mental health.

Media’s take on beauty

In the digital age, where magazine cover models and pristine Instagram snapshots dominate our screens, we’re submerged in a sea of curated perfection. These idealised depictions, though captivating, often distort our sense of reality, setting a bar that feels dizzyingly high. Many grapple with the pressure to emulate such standards, and falling short can take a toll on their self-esteem.

Comparison is innate to us; it’s how we navigate our social world. Yet, in the beauty arena, this seemingly innocent act of juxtaposition can be a double-edged sword, often leaving us feeling less than.

Body image’s role

Body image is all about how we view our physical appearance. Constantly seeing these “perfect” standards can make people feel bad about their bodies. That can bring on negative feelings and even issues like anxiety and depression.

Also, the way media shows the “perfect” body can make some obsess over tiny flaws. Some might struggle with body dysmorphic disorder (BDD), a condition where they can’t stop thinking about minor or even imagined flaws in their look.

What peers think

Outside of media, what friends and peers think can also shape how we view beauty. Especially for younger folks, what their friends think matters a lot. Some may take drastic measures, venturing into crash diets or even surgical alterations, all in the pursuit of social acceptance.

When you’re constantly measuring yourself against these towering beauty benchmarks and finding yourself lacking, the blow to your self-esteem can be deep. This emotional weight might spiral into more severe mental health challenges.

Beauty across the globe

Remember, beauty looks different around the world. Different cultures have different views. But today, these ideals often mix and merge. This can make some feel torn between two different beauty standards.

Boosting positive views on body and self

Addressing these issues means tackling them from many angles. Teaching people to critically view media or talking openly about beauty can help. Therapy, like cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT), has also helped many people see themselves in a healthier way.

It’s also essential to create welcoming spaces where everyone is valued, no matter how they look. Let’s remember to value traits like kindness and smarts as much as looks.

To wrap it up

Society’s lens on beauty undeniably sways our self-image. Amid the whirlwind of media portrayals and peer pressures championing idealised appearances, we must anchor ourselves in the belief that beauty is diverse and boundless. By challenging these constricted ideals and centring our mental well-being, we pave the path to a more self-affirming outlook.

Ali Raza is a professional social worker and freelance writer from Pakistan.

© Copyright 2014–2034 Psychreg Ltd