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How Media Effects Body Image Essay

951 words - 4 pages

Media Effect on Body Image: Effects Media has on the Way we View Ourselves and Others Attractiveness
We all have our ideas of beautiful and attractive everyone views themselves and others differently. Growing up, many people judge others by looks before they get to truly know someone. Media portrays people in ways that make society believe that everyone should look the way photoshopped, airbrushed celebrities look. As seen in a recent online video “SEE IT: Woman's body dramatically altered with Photoshop.” A 37-second video which shows a model who is transformed to the point that she is almost unrecognizable. From the length of her legs to the size of her nose is changed in post-photography stage (nydailynews). The video has gone viral in a week. It is a shocking representation of what the media does to make celebrities and models look “perfect.”
Magazines are a big part of social media and they can be found in almost every store we shop in. Media clearly emphasizes idealized body images in the women of today. For instance, a recent content analysis of ten women’s magazines showed that 95% of the models in fashion magazines were lean, in fitness magazines 55% were lean and 36% were muscular-only 6% of the models in both magazine types had a soft, round body types (Knobloch-Westerwick & Crane, 2012). This research shows that most women's magazines are most likely going to be filled with leaner, more attractive women.
There are very few pictures of overweight or heavier people in magazines, especially in mens magazines. In mens magazines like Sports Illustrated, women are usually portrayed in a sexual manor. A study called “Role of Media and Peers on Body Change Strategies Among Adult Men: Is Body Size Important?” evaluated the way men view women in social media (McCabe & McGreevy,2011). The study tested the differences between about 500 men aged from 18 to 60 years in three different groups: normal weight, overweight and obese. The study examined body image, body change strategies and messages about bodies that were received from peers and the media. Body images and media messages happened to be the strongest predictors of losing weight (McCabe & McGreevy,2011). This study is another indicator that media plays a huge part in peoples body image. It shows that people do try to lose weight because of the way people are portrayed in the media.
Another study (Dittmar, 2009) was done that proposed two different psychological processes that take place whenever females look at attractive models. They were evaluated by how much they respected the model (comparison processing) and the other process was putting themselves in the shoes of the model (fantasy processing). This experiment manipulated the processing through different instructions when the women looked at different ads with...

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