Flaws in flawless


photo by photos by Ava West and Alexis Mandlang

Students come from all different backgrounds. No two people look or act the same, but all are beautiful.

Whether it be Kim Kardashian, Emma Chamberlain or Chris Hemsworth, there is a specific appearance that others strive to obtain despite their differences. In the era of social media, being “perfect” has a negative stigma.

The MV Organization, a non-profit social startup, defines the beauty standard today as having a small waist, long legs, narrow hips, fair skin and plump lips.

Beauty standards, like having a small waist and thin legs, promote an unhealthy relationship with oneself. Nobody is ever considered “perfect” since everyone is different in their own ways. An unattainable goal of ‘perfection’ causes people to feel like there is a specific way that they need to look to be accepted by society. When it is farther from the truth. 

Beauty standards are not just one specific set of qualifications. According to Teen Vogue, beauty standards vary from culture to culture and change over time.

The constant change of standards makes it hard for anyone to be completely set in each bracket. Trying to keep up is like a competition of who has the better lips and favorable hair at a specific time. 

Today, society loves to pretend that the beauty standard has become more inclusive since the start, which is not true at all. Beauty standards are forever changing, and since social media is much more popular, society is altering their ‘face of beauty’ to fit with the trends on social media. 

Instead of trying to fight against these norms in our society, beauty standards should not even be considered when trying to determine if someone is beautiful or deserves respect. As a community, we need to turn our heads away from social norms and accept everyone for who they are. 

Not only are the beauty standards toxic surrounding women, but they also affect men. No matter the gender, beauty is defined at specific statutes, according to society. 

In 2016, CNBC described the male beauty standard as lean, muscular bodies, above 6 feet tall and clean, cut hair (2016). 

More than ever, males have been placed with an unrealistic view of how they should look in order to be considered up to par with being considered perfect. Height as an expectation is similar to race: it is genetics. There is no way of changing what you are born with. 

These beauty standards can have negative effects on body image and mental health. Not looking a certain way to fit into society leads people to believe they are not good enough, which then makes people want to change their appearance to be accepted. People can go as far as permanently altering their bodies to fit into the ‘perfect type’ that society chose. The idea that self-worth is based on society’s perception of beauty allows for other people’s opinions to matter, when the only person who should define your self-worth is you. 

Individual people are beautiful in their own ways. Whether it be their looks or their personality, everyone is born into different lives which makes them unique. Teens tend to look at others and feel envious of what they look like, no matter race, gender, ethnicity or orientation. It is time that the beauty standards that society is centered around are overlooked and a person’s individual beauty is truly appreciated.