The Pressure to be Perfect

Reading through a women’s magazine the other day, which I only ever look at when I’m at the hairdresser, my first thought was, ‘Oh, I see they’re still making women feel like shit about themselves, even in 2019.’ 

I know these magazines have come a long way, and aren’t only about making yourself look good ‘for your man’, but the majority of the models in them—and models everywhere, actually—are still super skinny white women, as if very thin and white are the characteristics of an ideal woman.  And also, WHO is buying $600 pants?  Or $12,000 outfits?  Only the very, very rich. The 1% probably. Or people who can’t afford it but want to look like celebrities, and therefore incur debt in order to do so. 

I get that it’s editorial and meant to be a fantasy, or aspirational, but it upholds this beauty standard and standard of living that’s unrealistic for most women (womyn/womxn). And, showing mainly skinny white models as a fantasy –whose fantasy is it? It is so harmful to anyone who isn’t white or isn’t super slim.

Everything in the universe gives off a vibrational frequency. Concepts such as love, joy, peace and appreciation are some of the highest vibrational frequencies in existence.  Hate, grief, fear, and jealousy obviously give off very low vibes. But also every physical thing in the universe has a frequency. (Some aren’t necessarily what we would call good or bad, they’re just neutral, like a desk or a glass).

What is the vibrational frequency of beauty magazines, I wonder. If they make you happy and feel good reading them, then by all means, don’t be put off! Joy is scarce (and sacred) in this world, so do what lights you up! I love beauty. I love to look at the latest fashions. Lots of people do. But if it stirs up the comparison bug in you, making you feel not good enough, just detox that crap right out of your life. You won’t be missing much, and you’ll be saving your sanity (and probably some money).

I want to give a shoutout to the brand Rag and Bone: they feature two types of women modeling any given outfit on their website.  The skinnier one is still shown more prominently—you have to click further to see the fuller-figured lady, but at least we have another choice. It’s an important start.  They also include women of color as well.

The images we get every day as women in society –even in the year 2019, people! —are that we aren’t thin enough, pretty enough, don’t have the right clothes and on and on. It’s a business model that sells you stuff you don’t need so you think you’ll be a better (more perfect, and hence, happier) person. It’s BS! We need to call BS on this stuff! The messages for men are this way too. I realize it’s how companies sell products but can’t they do it without preying on our deepest insecurities and fears?

Children’s movies have thankfully evolved. But my generation grew up with the clichéd and tired ‘handsome prince/man/savior saving the helpless but beautiful girl’ trope. So it was ingrained in us from a young age that you need a savior and you’re not capable on your own. Combine that with fathers telling their daughters they need to ‘marry well’ or be taken care of and you’ve got a recipe for a struggle ahead, unless you do the deep work of de-programming that message. Again, that has mostly changed, (for example the movie ‘Frozen’) and we’re seeing the beautiful results of that change now in our young girls and womyn. Strong confident girls and womxn who are changing the world for the better.  Thank God(dess)!

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