24 Mar 2017

Media Stereotypes and Comparison


Ah, the media. You can't escape it. It is always going to be right there, staring at you in the face and subconsciously forcing you to compare what you see in the media to real life. And you know what... we all know it's fake, exaggerated, edited, stereotyped yet we still want our lives to be like what we see on the telly or in movies or in magazines.

Seeing photoshopped images of slim women with flawless skin and perfect hair is undeniably the ideal goal for some women, yet it is physically impossible to even get there because it is edited. Even the people in those pictures can't achieve that 'perfect' look. And we know it isn't real but some people still want all of that.

And when there is an unedited image of someone in a magazine or on the Internet, people feel the need to comment on their 'imperfections'.. why? Because we are so used to seeing the 'ideal' and 'perfect' representation of people all of the time that when there is something to break the stereotype, it is unusual and not normal. Somehow, there is still an issue with this too!

Scrolling through social media accounts with #RelationshipGoals and #FriendshipGoals everywhere... it's not even real but for some reason we still want that 'perfect' lifestyle. If someone posts a picture on Instagram with their significant other and the comments read 'they don't even look good together' - what does that even mean?! How is that possible? Who makes these rules? Who are you to judge? Yes, you are entitled to your own opinion but is it worth commenting your thoughts to make someone else feel bad about posting it?!

These ideologies that are presented online via social media, in the media (TV, film and the general Internet) start to mirror our everyday lives. We want to act like actresses and models. We want to look  like them too. We want our lives and lifestyles to reflect theirs. We want to be like what we see. Why can't we be ourselves?

Maybe it is a possibility that people make assumptions about other people based on what they've seen in the media. We are so used to being surrounded by size 4 supermodels with long legs and their makeup done so effortlessly. We are so used to seeing those Hollywood couples on the news with all of their juicy details about their million pound wedding or designer shoes or expensive apartments. We are so used to seeing images that the media consider 'perfect' and 'normal' that we consider ourselves to be the opposite if we don't have those things or qualities.

Obviously, we all want what is best for us and we all want to be normal but is what is portrayed in the media even 'normal'? Is it achievable? Is it realistic? Most of the time the answer is no.

I think the media is to blame for others to pick on little things such as how pretty someone is or whether they are dressed 'on trend' or even whether a couple looks good together. Why does the media continue to force us into a trap of constant comparison? Why must we put others down because of this? More importantly, why do we put ourselves down because of what we see online, on tv, in movies, in magazines...?

I see some publications and mediums are trying to break the stereotype and step out of this social norm and ideology of what we should be like, look like, dress like, act like etc. But clearly not enough if there is still so much negativity in the world!

I love when there are articles in magazines that celebrate plus-size women bossing it in the modelling world. I love seeing videos of black women breaking stereotypes, especially in the beauty industry. I love when online influencers (i.e.: bloggers, Youtubers, vloggers etc) are preaching the message of embracing who you are rather than what someone else is. It is refreshing to see but people need understand that it is the truth, they need to listen to it more and then actually practice it.

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All I can say is that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Wearing makeup doesn't make you pretty. Doing your hair in a certain way doesn't make you look good. Outfits don't make you appear any more fashionable. Your body type isn't what defines you. Travelling and owning materialistic goods isn't what make you better than others. Being yourself is what makes you, you!

You are not defined by what you look like, what you wear and what you do. You shouldn't compare yourself to others because what makes you special is being 100% yourself.
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2 comments

  1. Inspiring!

    XX

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    Replies
    1. Thank you! I think it is a very important issue to talk about :)

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