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Effects of Social Media on Body Image

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❶In these latter decades, models also became fitter, adding muscles and tone to the preferred image.

Body Image & the Media

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The results indicated that exposure to edited Instagram photos directly led to lower self-esteem as well as lower body image. Girls with higher social comparison ways were negatively affected by exposure to the edited photos.

Interestingly, the edited pictures were highly rated than the original ones. It was noted that girls in both conditions found the pictures realistic. Instagram is one of the culprits behind the growing trend of body discontentment among adolescent girls. Adolescent girls are more likely to develop body image issues because of comparing themselves to social norms of beauty as portrayed in the social media representations.

Social media is more interactive and thus provides users with more agencies to personalize and control their experiences. A study that was carried out on US women projected that people who follow fitness boards on online media specifically Pinterest are more likely to engage in intense weight loss behaviors. Increased body image displeasure in adolescent girls has been caused by great exposure to thin-ideal media.

Appearance comparison, peer norms, and control were the set of experimental tools used to evaluate the effects of exposure to thin-ideal media. In addition to social media, it is vital to note the importance of various concepts on body image such as culture, social comparison, thin-ideal, active use of social media such as posting and commenting.

The research on those areas will help broaden the scope of research on body image. Media promoted unrealistic thin-ideals are associated with major effects on women and girls body image, eating patterns and moods Tiggermann, Research on how the thin exposure models influence body displeasure shows that participants exposed to thin-idealized model images demonstrated greater body discontentment and lower advertising effectiveness than those exposed to non-idealized model images.

Therefore, the use of non-idealized model images is suggested Yu Psychology of Popular Media Culture. Image Retouching and Adolescent Body Image. Body Image and the Role of Television. Journal of Creative Communications. Journal of Youth and Adolescence. Social Media and Body Image Concerns: Further Considerations and Broader Perspectives.

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Because people are exposed to countless media images, media images become the basis for some of these comparisons. When people's comparisons tell them that their bodies are substandard, they can become depressed, suffer from low self-esteem, or develop eating disorders. The influence of media on body image is ironic, given that as people in the United States and other countries have become heavier and more out of shape, female models have become thinner and male models have become more muscled.

Sociologists and psychologists have developed several theories describing how the media influences body image, including social comparison theory, self-schema theory, third-person effects and self-discrepancy theory. They also have developed interventions to offset the negative impact of unreal media images. Sociologists theorize that the media have an investment in promoting body dissatisfaction because it supports a billion-dollar diet and self-improvement industry.

The study of body image — how people perceive their bodies and how these opinions develop — was pioneered by Paul Schilder in the 's. His working definition of body image was "the picture of our own body which we form in our mind, that is to say, the way in which the body appears to ourselves" as quoted in Grogan , p.

Many contemporary researchers feel that this definition downplays the complexity of the field, since body image can refer to a variety of concepts from judgments about weight, size, appearance and normality, to satisfaction with these areas. The term "body image" includes both how people perceive their bodies cognitively and also how they feel about their bodies.

Studies of body image show that it influences many other aspects of life. Dissatisfaction with one's body image can lead to many problems, ranging from depression to low self-esteem and eating disorders. People feel increasingly pressured by the media about their bodies. The average person is exposed to thousands of beauty images weekly, and these images reflect an unreal body image that becomes more and more removed from the reality of contemporary people, who on average weigh more and exercise less than people did decades ago.

At the same time, bodies depicted by the media have become thinner and fitter. Pressure about body image is not new, and even in the days before the electronic mass media expanded to its current size and speed, messages about body image were carried in magazines, books, newspapers, and — looking back even further — in paintings and drawings. Modern-day media do have a financial investment in promoting body dissatisfaction.

Advertising revenues from the body industry contribute a great deal to media profits. This connection means that the link between media and body image is a health issue but also raises questions about the end results of consumer culture. The ideal body presented by the media has become thinner since the 's, particularly for women. At the same time, Americans have become much heavier. Adults show similar trends; over thirty percent of adult Americans are obese Ogden et al. In the 's through magazines and in the new medium of film, a thinner, almost androgynous female form was promoted, epitomized in the flat-chested flapper.

The ideal female form became curvier during the hard times of the Great Depression in the 's, although it remained relatively slender through World War II. The postwar revival of domesticity led to the media hyping heavier, ultra-feminine images such as Marilyn Monroe, with larger breasts and hips but small waists.

This was only a temporary interruption of the century's trend toward increasingly thin bodies as the ideal. Models shrank more throughout the 's and 's. In these latter decades, models also became fitter, adding muscles and tone to the preferred image.


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Body Image Research Papers discuss the history of body image, and how it effects women's self-esteem. Research papers on body image look at the psychology of body image and one's personal association with their physical form.

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Pressure about body image is not new, and even in the days before the electronic mass media expanded to its current size and speed, messages about body image were carried in magazines, books, newspapers, and — looking .

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Body Image The Purdue: Body Image Lesson Plans for HS website is intended to help young individuals obtain a positive body image. The features include materials from a four-activity unit. A separate publication lists activities for middle school participants. The research on those areas will help broaden the scope of research on body image. (Prieler& Choi, ). Media promoted unrealistic thin-ideals are associated with major effects on women and girls body image, eating patterns and moods (Tiggermann, ).

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Body image has played a huge role in the lives of women through out the years and with time, has changes, also causing women to have low self esteem issues and in some cases obtaining eating and health issues (Anthony ). A Research Paper Submitted in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the ideal body have led to body image disturbance in some women, as well as implicated the Body Image States Scale between the control group and the experimental group.