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Unrealistic Standards Of Beauty

Portrayal Of Beauty

What is beauty ? How do we define what is beautiful and what is not?

Today, we live in a world where everything is quantified and rated based on the same quantification. Yet, it is really hard to quantify beauty. Sure, something that looks attractive may get thousands of likes on Instagram or crash Facebook’s servers, but that doesn’t set a standard of beauty. Alas, for the society we live in, beauty is anything that majority of people agree that they are attracted to, which in itself creates a unrealistic standard.

Since childhood, we have read stories in which a beautiful woman has been described as having features akin to goddess.

Her toned body and glowing skin makes her desirable. No woman can hold a candle to her.This often makes us feel pressured – pressured to be skinny, to be the type of beautiful that the media portrays. 

But this beauty isn’t normal. A lot of effort goes into making this. So why are we, being compared to them?

Why is the media demanding such a high, unfair standard of beauty that people are comparing us, to these people?

So what do you think beauty is; what defines it?

So if we don’t have a tiny stomach or tight thighs are we too big? The media would consider us too big and they would make some clever remark about us needing a diet. Another thing that has perpetuated the superiority of beauty is the stereotype that beautiful people are good spirited people with hearts of gold.

Anyone who doesn’t match the standard of beauty is mean, has a heart of stone. The dark skinned girl in Bollywood films has always been considered to be inferior. This sort of mindset has been cultivated in us, our parents, the previous generation and their predecessors for years, dating back to centuries. Adding to the woe is the fact that a whole industry strives on this mindset and feeds the same to our future. Millions of girls, even boys, get the idea that their future is doomed if they do not look good. Maybe they won’t get the job they desire, or maybe they won’t find a person who loves them. It is heartbreaking, but it is true. When it comes to beauty, our society has an unrealistic standard that it set and never bothered to introspect it.

We can end this illusion though, so that our future doesn’t suffer the same issues that our generation does. The first crucial step is to erase the concept of ugly, and start looking at everybody with the same lens. Skin tones do not decide your character. We have to accept people for who they are, not on how they look.

At the same time, it’s important that we speak out against those who push unrealistic beauty standards and show them that people are more than their physical features. After all, beauty is a feeling rather than being a superficial quality. It’s unfair to judge people on how they look and mould the society on the basis of discrimination and superiority.

Beauty is everywhere around us and in each one of us. All we have to do is accept and see everyone through the same lens.

Pratishtha Parashar

Pratishtha Parasher is a history enthusiast and has graduated in history from Delhi University. A voracious reader, a cinephile ,she is currently pursuing her masters in mass communication from Jamia Millia Islamia.

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