Finding Yourself in the Neverending Tale of Beauty Standards

Isabel Umekubo, Photo and Video Editor

If you think this is going to be your regular uplifting, inspiring speech about body image, you have come to the wrong place. The stars of the new century have brought forth brand new beauty standards, along with brand new messages. Of course, the projection of self-love is a beautiful thing, and as a global community we need to encourage others to prioritize loving themselves.

However, hypocrisy is common in today’s society. You praise beauty, but shame expressed confidence. You tell someone they are ugly and shame them for retaliating. Someone expresses self-hatred or lack of confidence, and you call them attention-seekers. A person aims to be different and to be themselves, and it is labeled as a try-hard. They remain casual, they are labeled as plain or ordinary. Society seeks perfection, perfection that is only given in temporary bursts by what is known today as beauty standards.

90% of women and young girls are unsatisfied with their appearance, says an article titled The Complicated Truth about Social Media and Body Image. Out of that 90%, the other 10% could have either gone through powerful journeys to achieve self-love or have endured terrible measures to have a body in which they think others will love.

All over the media and its widespread community, there are countless number of platforms that advocate for the upliftment and encouragement of positive body image as well as confidence in regards to mental health. There are a number of social media platforms, organizations, campaigns, and influencers who share personal stories about body image.

Little Mix, a pop girl group from the U.K., has released multiple albums centering on women empowerment and confidence. One specific song that stands out from their recent album is the song “Strip.” The music video highlights the struggles the girls overcame, from cyberbullying on appearance, slut-shaming, and the music industry’s beauty standards. With words written in black on each member’s naked body, the song perfectly captures the female perspective on a journey through self-love and empowerment.

Here is a sample of lyrics from the song “Strip.”

Take off all my make-up ’cause I love what’s under it
Rub off all your words, don’t give a, “uh”, I’m over it
Jiggle all this weight, yeah, you know I love all of this
Finally love me naked, sexiest when I’m confident

The emphasis of young women expressing not only confidence but acceptance sets priorities straight. The concept of self-love, self-acceptance, and perfect imperfection steps towards finding yourself.

As a young woman living in a world aiming to bring us down, I truly believe it’s important to acknowledge transformed lives by the neverending tale of beauty standards.