Every single body shaming story is different, but for sure you will definitely hear something about them the society body standard, so what exactly causes body shaming?
After doing some research on the most common reason on why people body shame, I found that most the internet is one of the biggest issue, but why is that? That is because nowadays, the internet contains a lot of fake advertising and it is made so surreal that everyone fantasise to be like them or expects someone else to be like them. For example, there are all sorts of different model agencies nowadays that would only hire ’skinny’ models, this has a huge impact on all the girls that used to love their body. Beauty magazines contain mostly adverts and it is really disturbing for women because it is based on the same principle : telling women that they are not beautiful enough, there is something wrong with them, they are not smart enough, they are not skinny enough… In fact, 85% of an issue from ELLE magazine was made of adverts, and Cosmopolitan with 65%, these two are some of the most popular magazines that women would read. “85% of magazines content is dedicated to make you feel imperfect and inadequate. 70% of women feel guilty, ashamed and depressed after only 3 minutes of reading a fashion magazine.” – OskarTBrand.
Hence, the internet is constantly making up new ‘body challenges’ that leads people to body shame, for example the thigh gap, the A4 paper challenge, the iPhone 6 challenge, bikini bridge challenge, the belly button challenge, the collar bone challenge… Let’s be real here, how many of these have YOU tried? The problem is, we get influenced by he internet so easily that gradually the internet is being everyone’s level of self-esteem down, and this needs to be stopped.
Besides the internet, cultural/religion might also be one of the factors we do not often consider of, but growing up in a Chinese household, it has always been an issue. Chinese believe that skinny = beautiful, which is unacceptable because your body does not speak anything about what kind of a person you are. In fact, the A4 paper challenge was made up from China, and this doesn’t make any sense because this is basically a way of telling everyone else who couldn’t complete the challenge to be body shamed or feel bad about their own body.
Nowadays not only adults can have access to the internet, us teenagers too. None of us started off wanting to look a certain way, but since we’ve seen these unreal body shapes, we try whatever we can to look like that, and this, is exactly what is pressuring us.