It’s no secret that Hollywood and showbiz in general are obsessed with womens’ appearances. Looks, makeup, hair, body shape, body type, and every detail down to the height of a woman’s heels are constantly scrutinized, which leads me to wonder: can women (both in the limelight and the…regular light…) ever win?
If you type “Jessica Simpson” into Google, the auto-fill tool helps you out: the second option is “Jessica Simpson Full Figured.” Are you kidding me? Looking at pictures of her, the last thing most people would think is “full figured” (or, if they DO think “full figured,” then I think society seriously needs to get a grip). She came under fire about two years ago for wearing high-waisted pants that made her look, well, fine, to be honest. They weren’t the most flattering jeans ever, but I’d never classify her as full-figured. And even if I did, why would that be a dirty word?
On the other side of the coin, however, if a woman appears to be thinner than average, that’s a problem too. Take, for example, recent photos of LeAnn Rimes sparking controversy that the singer was underweight, not eating, anorexic. She has resorted to Tweeting everything she eats in order to prove that she’s healthy. Why on EARTH is this necessary?
Photoshop is rampant in magazines and even movies now, which distorts girls’ and womens’ impression of what a healthy, normal body can or should be. Katy Perry recently appeared on the cover of Rolling Stone, and along with it came a roll-over image that Internet surfers could mouse over and view the before-and-afters of the cover photo. A woman who is heralded for her large breasts probably more often than her singing voice, Perry’s chest was photoshopped to look even bigger. WHY?
Women are presented with unattainable “goals” as far as appearance. What kind of message does the media send when women who are often considered to have the “perfect body” – let’s use Jessica Alba as the example -- are shaved down for their movie roles? Similarly, naturally-thin Natalie Portman was criticized for losing weight to be in Black Swan.
Why are men never held to similar standards? Take Christian Bale, for example: In The Machinist, he slimmed down so much that even I, celebrity crush torch-carrier, was repulsed. On the flip side, men like Jonah Hill have no problem finding work even if they are bigger than what is considered the norm. Singling out these two men is kind of a hypocritical act on my part since I think people shouldn't be judged by their size, but there needs to be an example that despite those men doing similar things that women do all the time, no one EVER talks about their weight or dietary choices.
More importantly, though, why aren’t all genders taught to love and accept not only their own body, but others’ bodies? The Sesame-Street adage that “difference is what makes the world go round” seems to be completely ignored in the media, and at the same time, we have women both starving themselves to be “perfect” or telling us not to worry, because they just ate some Oreos.
Hollywood: Give it a rest! People should be allowed to eat whatever they want or take a jog without being critiqued one way or the other.
What do you guys think?