Don’t get me wrong, I love what they’re doing. The problem is that many aren’t buying into those pictures as being truly beautiful. There’s still a part of us that looks at the women with the rolls or the wrinkles and we try, oh we try to look and say, “What beauty!”. The words aren’t effortless. We WANT to believe Dove. We know what we’re seeing is truth, but our eyes are still lured by the photoshopped woman on Vogue. Why? Because there’s something about perfection, even unattainable perfection, that entices us.
Don’t believe me?
Now, more than ever, our eyes see more than 400 ads every day by marketers telling us what beauty is.
Put a few oddball ads up with a visual that directly contradicts its mass, and even if heart agrees with it, we have a hard time wrapping our minds around it because it’s just… odd.
You know what gets me? The abs. I just want flat abs. I don’t think I’ve ever had the kind of abs I covet from the model in the magazine. She has them, so it must be possible. There’s something about trying to attain what we don’t have. There’s something about a woman who wants to conquer perfection, the unattainable, so we can stand confident at the end of the day as to say, “I’m finally perfect!”
The problem is, we never arrive. Even if we do attain some measure of great abs, we always strive for more perfection. We will always be 5 pounds away from our goal. Who teaches us that? Just throwing it out there, but the fact magazines take a perfectly beautiful model and photoshop her to be even thinner probably doesn’t help.
I’m thankful for counter-messages Dove is trying to send. We need more messages of the like so our minds can compute that is indeed beautiful. We have enough women who aren’t buying it, but they’re falling for it. Ask any woman if she thinks the message media is telling women is real, they will all say “no.” The reason we’re falling for it is because, whoever gets into our minds and hearts the most, wins.
To not fall for it, means we have to fight. Fight with our minds and hearts to buy into another message.
Who told us that an aging body with wrinkles is ugly?
Who told us to fight for a 20 year old’s body when we’re 40?
Who told us that grey hair should be covered up at all costs?
Who told us to not leave the house without having a teeth whitening treatment?
Who told us that a lil bump in the lower ab should be conquered at all costs?
It’s time we stop listening and choose to keep it real.
Tangibly, what does this look like? Why does it matter? What can be done? What do you think?