Beauty and the Definition of Attractiveness
Beauty among women is an inexhaustible subject of debate. Time and again debates about the concept of attractiveness have been taken forward. Unfortunately, the conclusion on this topic has never been unanimous. Human beings are special in nature. We also have our own conceptions of attractiveness. Our eyes are a gateway to our minds. Our minds harbor our emotions, and our thoughts send us our perceptions. These interpretations are our own views. Beauty is an opinion, to be honest with you. There is no one thing that can be said about appearance. Not even what you think is beauty will be acceptable to all people. Think of the stunning women you know of. Is she not beautiful by all standards and definitions as per your views? Defiantly yes. She is an angel, and she can only be likened to the brightest rose flower planted by the riverside. But unfortunately, not everyone thinks so. So this begs the question, what is the current definition of beauty?
The Changing Concept of Beauty
Not long ago, five decades ago, slender women were taken to be the definition of malnutrition and as a sign of lack. On the other hand, a lady with some flabby cheeks, rounded face, plump and curvy was stunning. She was the symbol of beauty. Everyone wanted to associate with her. Fast forward to the year 2017 in the 21st century. Who is a beautiful woman? Well, she is the exact opposite of the 20th-century beauty (Jessop, 2012). She is amazing. She is slender, she possesses high self-esteem, and she does not have a flabby face. Her breasts are firm with a well-curved cleavage. She turns heads whenever she passes. She is extremely attractive. No one gets enough of her. She is indescribably amazing. If you have one or happen to know one, then you are extremely lucky. These beautiful women make up only 2% of the total global populace. Therefore, is there a body that controls the definition of beauty?
The Influence of Social Media on Beauty Standards
A recent study carried by Dove among some 1000 women found that around 82% of women feel that social media holds the definition of beauty. These women were in the age bracket of 18 to 64 years of age. It is on these social media platforms where women tend to showcase their beauty. Unfortunately, many have been trolled negatively by online bullies. These bullies have driven them to believe that indeed 'beautiful' should conform to some set standards. Ten years ago Dove conducted a similar survey and found out that 23% of women had the belief that they could be in a position to control their beauty. Impressively the percentage has more than tripled. Many women now believe that they can be in control of their beauty. They have taken measures to ensure that they become stunning and amazing. Cases of plastic surgeries are on the rise globally (Anton, 2014). More women would like to attain this idealized shape and look like this beautiful woman. Electronic and print media alike are fast propagating this image of the ideal woman. She is receiving unconditional adoration from all spheres of life.
The Phenomenon of Selfies and Self-Esteem
Probably you have come across a lady taking a selfie. They smile wide and pose transfixed aiming to get the best shot at their beauty. They then take these photos through their filtering applications and choose the best to be shared with friends on the social media platform. Though this practice is annoying to some, it is a common phenomenon on our media platforms. In fact, in the year 2013, "selfie" was Oxford's word of the year. Despite being numerously shared, most social media users do not have a liking for selfies (Mugea, 2015). A recent study on Facebook users showed that 82% of them would like to see fewer selfies on their walls and more regular pictures. Selfies are mostly used by women as a way of raising their self-esteem that is probably dented. They are targeted at reaching that one, two or several persons who might have approval for their beauty. These social platforms are full of love-hate. At times a selfie shared might lead to the woman having a better self-esteem but in some other unfortunate incidences, they have resulted in low esteem as the bullies have a free day trolling the women involved. Professor Jenkins (a psychology expert) advises women against trying to get approval from other people. He advises that they should seek it from the inside and in that way, they are certain to see their true beauty.
Encouraging Women to Embrace Their Unique Beauty
In conclusion, even though it is difficult to quantify beauty, it is relatively easy to encourage any woman struggling with their image. Being kind to others does not cost a thing, and as such, it should be our collective duty to encourage our girls and women. They need not make use of enhancers for their looks. Neither do they need to undergo surgeries to attain that perfect look? We are wonderful and unique in our way, and our view of personal beauty supersedes all other definitions.
Mugea, T. T. (2015). Definition of Beauty. In Aesthetic Surgery of the Breast (pp. 3-5). Springer Berlin Heidelberg.
Jessop, T. E. (2012, January). The definition of beauty. In Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society (Vol. 33, pp. 159-172). Aristotelian Society, Wiley.
Anton, J. P. (2014). Plotinus' refutation of beauty as symmetry. The Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism, 23(2), 233-237.