Essay on The Affect of Media Beauty Standards on Women's Self Esteem

Essay on The Affect of Media Beauty Standards on Women's Self Esteem

Length: 2170 words (6.2 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Term Papers

Open Document

Essay Preview

The Affect of Media Beauty Standards on Women's Self Esteem

In the daily fight for the emancipation of women and the pressures and influence of advertising, women of all ages are coerced into physical and psychological self-torment trying to achieve an optimum look or image. This is something not limited to a few. One can see the work of television advertisers in high schools everyday as girls wear the same clothing, makeup and accessories as their favorite stars. They may also try to imitate models they see in teen magazines. While it is fairly obvious that such a phenomenon exists, what is not so obvious are the detrimental effects.

One question looms large. Is self-esteem affected by media? Many think it is. Morant (2000) reports on the BMA's findings that media should take more responsibility. A report was done about body image and the media and calls for a more realistic range of body types (2000). Council Chairman Dr. Ian Bogle claimed that there is a cult of
"bodily perfection" that is perpetuated by media (2000). Recommendations include a policy regarding the use of thin women in advertisements and school programs to teach media literacy (2000). Many girls watch television and see women who by most standards would be considered underweight. While that may be the case, these waifs are symbols of beauty and so few question whether they look good or are healthy. Rather, girls question why they themselves are not also pencil thin. This can affect self-esteem.

Tessa Jowell, minister for women, said: "Young women are tired of feeling second rate because they cannot match the thin ideal that they see so often in the media. For many, poor body image can lead to low levels of self esteem; for some it is far more dangerou...

... middle of paper ... follow and so the media needs to take more responsibility for their actions.


Holsey, S. (1996, July 30). Former rapper disenchanted with rap's direction. Michigan Chronicle, p. PG.

Morant, H. (2000). BMA demands more responsible media attitude on body image.

Pipher, M. Reviving Ophelia : Saving the Selves of Adolescent Girls (Ballantine Reader's Circle). Ballantine Books, 1995.

Thiruchandran, S. (1994). Major Trends of Feminist Approach. Contemporary Women's Issues Database, 11-21.

Vargas, J. (1996). Expanding the popular culture debates: Puertorriquenas, Hollywood, and cultural identity. Studies in Latin American Popular Culture, 15, 155173.

Wolf, N. (1994). Fire With Fire. Fawcett Book Group .
Wolf, N. (1992). The Beauty Myth; Doubleday; Company, Incorporated.

Douglas, Susan J. (1994) Where the Girls Are. Epilogue

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Beauty and Behavioral Standards and Disney Programs Essay

- When discussing the definition of beauty in today’s society, thin, fair-skinned, and long-haired are all words that are agreeably in the top five adjectives used. These standards of beauty tend to be engraved in brains of children, teens, adults, Americans, Asians, Europeans, men, women, and etc. all day every day. These ideals are portrayed through television commercials, billboards, newspaper ads and all other forms of media, such as Disney channel programs. Behavioral norms are also a major topic depicted in Disney channel programs; these programs depict that certain races, social classes and genders behave in certain ways, some which are sometimes stereotypical....   [tags: social issues, beauty]

Term Papers
1180 words (3.4 pages)

Beauty Pageants Are Self Esteem Killers And Distort The Views Of A Woman 's Role

- ... Yet, women applying for these scholarships must be unmarried and not presently pregnant or have been pregnant at all. This is addressed so that the winner can devote all their time during their reign as the pageant queen, without any distractions. Protesters are outraged by this rule, simply due to the fact that it is unfair that only women are obligated to take care of their children. No one has questioned if a man’s ability to care for their kids while having a job, is a requirement, whether or not they can be hired....   [tags: Beauty contest, Beauty, Miss Universe]

Term Papers
1658 words (4.7 pages)

Personal Statement On Self Esteem Essay

- ... It may involve other’s view on how she raises her children, cares for her home, her husband or any other matters. Women have habitually been homemakers and now they’re getting executive positions in companies and superseding in the fields that once were only given to men. At some point of her life she may have experienced failure. The fear of failure causes her to suffer from low self-esteem. On the other hand, women may feel like the problem is that none of this is true for the majority of women, and hardly at all for girls of the 21st century....   [tags: Self-esteem, Childhood, Child, Female]

Term Papers
1085 words (3.1 pages)

The Media 's View Of Ideal Beauty Essay

- ... Men and women become dissatisfied with their bodies because media commercializes unrealistic bodies. When men and women see what media portrays, they look at themselves and start thinking negatively about their image. Markey and Markey states, “In addition to potentially affecting adolescents and young adults’ development of behaviors aimed at modifying or “improving” one’s attitudes regarding attractiveness, research suggests that the media may affect appearance” (Markey and Markey). Media thinks that women need to fit a certain “mold” to be beautiful....   [tags: Beauty, Human physical appearance, Muscle]

Term Papers
885 words (2.5 pages)

How Marketing Is Distorting the Idea of Beauty Essay examples

- Most individuals believe that fat or overweight people are lazy, ugly, stinky, unwanted and unkempt. This fat hate is what motivates the “cult of thinness”. Our Americans know consciously that the men and women in the magazines look better than any person possibly could in real life. However, unconsciously the message presented is that we should look like this. The truth is that the media wants to sell all cultures of men women discontentment in order to make a profit. Perfect idealisms of beauty negatively impact our children, our teens, our young women and men differently but equally....   [tags: self esteem distortion, eating disorders]

Term Papers
1312 words (3.7 pages)

The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison Essay

- In The Bluest Eye, by Toni Morrison, Pecola Breedlove attempts to measure up to the standard of beauty set by the Master Narrative: an ideological truth imposed by those in power. Pecola, persistent in her attempt to reach the convention of beauty, is never fully satisfied with herself, and quickly becomes obsessed in becoming ‘beautiful. Pecola begins to associate beauty with happiness and respect. This infinite pursuit for beauty has extremely destructive effects on Pecola’s self-esteem. By portraying Pecola’s perpetual, unrealistic endeavor to reach society’s standards and how she becomes submissive to these standards, Morrison reveals that one’s life can be overrun by viewing the world s...   [tags: beauty, self-esteem, happiness, Pecola]

Term Papers
1162 words (3.3 pages)

Essay on Why Teenagers Get Plastic Surgery and the Effects on Their Lives

- Do you ever look in the mirror and think that your face would look better if it wasn’t for your nose being there. Or maybe your ears just stick out a little too far. Perhaps you’re self-conscious and your breast are too large. Maybe it’s a bad day and you have severe acne that has left massive scares or zits on your face. Overall your just self-conscious about physical characteristics, you may be along with thousands of teens considering plastic surgery each year. I want to discuss why teenagers get plastic surgery and the effects that it has on their lives....   [tags: unrealistic modern beauty standards]

Term Papers
625 words (1.8 pages)

The Impact of Self-Esteem, Significant Others and Media on One's Self- Image

- Imagine a special mirror that not only reflected your physical features, but also allowed you to view other aspects of yourself. What do you think you would see. Better yet what do you think influenced you to come to your conclusion. How you answer this question determines your self-image. Self- image isn’t something a person is born with. Self- image are numbers of self impressions that are built up over a period of time. These impressions are influenced by a group of elements. I believe three of the most influential elements are self- esteem, significant others and the media....   [tags: media, self image]

Term Papers
1200 words (3.4 pages)

Does Television Affect Social Interaction? Essay

- A major research concern for behavioral psychologists and sociologists today circles an integral part of the American family routine and life. Something that has become so inset into homes that it would be rare to find one without it. Research has shown a hidden danger lurking in our homes, and the origin may surprise you. Television has been around since the early 1950’s but behaviorists have just recently begun to start studying the effects these machines may have on children, social interaction and families....   [tags: Psychology]

Term Papers
1031 words (2.9 pages)

The Role of Physical Beauty in Relationships Essay

- The young woman looks into the young man's eyes and realizes that they cannot get married and spend the rest of their lives together. They have absolutely nothing in common. They were just drawn together by mere physicality, and are not attracted to each other as a person because their backgrounds and personalities are far too incompatible. Questions begin to circulate on the role of personality in relationship, how much of a role does it play and why is it important to communicate clearly our personalities in a relationship....   [tags: Gender Studies]

Term Papers
1313 words (3.8 pages)