In the age of Instagram and Facebook, there’s greater pressure than ever for women to appear perfect. To combat the toxicity, a trend of ‘body positivity’ took hold, though what happens when this isn’t enough?
In theory, it’s clear that the notion of body positivity is a step in the right direction. Long gone are the visions of one, traditional definition of beauty, and here are the days of unabashed pride of your form, whatever shape or size it comes in. With Google Trends showing that searches for the term ‘plus size’ have steadily been on an incline, it’s seemingly a win for those that were degraded and othered for having a body that was less than perfect. This is especially welcome news in Australia, a country where the average woman is a size 14-16.
What once started as an innocent push to celebrate your flaws, has, instead, started to become yet another way to shame and police weight. The pressure of loving your body every day, whilst wading through the barrage of content that champions a very specific version of beauty, can often feel like a weight too heavy to bear. That you must be happy with your body at all times can seem forced at best, and restrictive at worst. The idea that peace with your body can only come should you love yourself at all times is completely idealistic.
Born from a more grounded and realistic place, the new push for women is one of body acceptance. Leaving room for understandable insecurities and frustrations, this movement humanises women in a way that wasn’t thought through previously. While body positivity expected women to be a constant, shameless source of pride, body acceptance allows space for self-improvement. With hashtags such as #bodyacceptance, #fatacceptance and #loveyourlines popular across social media and online marketing, women are able to take a personalised stance against traditional standards of beauty. Not even so much a feat of bravery, but one of necessity. Brands like Dove, Aerie and Fenty Beauty have been recognised and praised for their use of a diverse cast of models, to appeal to an even more diverse range of women.
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Businesswoman and coach, Maren took her health into her own hands after her battle with mental illness 💪 Showing us that our beauty and worth can't be defined by numbers, Maren exercises to feel healthy and balanced rather than to lose weight 🧘♀️ We want to see more women like her represented in the media and advertising 📺 Upload your photo to the #ShowUs gallery and tell us who you want to see 👀 @girlgaze 📸 @andreagjest 🇩🇪 💻 @gettyimages #Dove #ShowUs #RealBeauty #JoinUs #Beauty #Diversity #Unique #girlgaze #GettyImages #BodyPositivity #Yoga #Exercise #Tattoos
Her, powered by a team of incredible women, is a female-led creative agency that is always keeping societal trends and considerations at the fore of everything we do: from graphic design through to social media marketing. With a mission of empowering women for what makes them who they are through marketing, we’re excited to change the very foundations of collective expectations and judgements. Centring more on these voices will help the change we’ve strived for even more.