You might have been one of the many few questioning this past week whether Kendall Jenner actually has a vagina. Or at least, where’s the hair, the bumps, the discoloration??? I mean come on no waxing is that good.
The Instagram Post
Kim Kardashion’s shapewear brand, Skims, recently launched their limited edition Valentine’s Day capsule collection with sister Kendall Jenner modeling the line. The brand was created to cater shapewear for every body type and the Kardashian sisters have been known to frequently model for the brand.
On February 12, prior to the collection’s launch, Kendall Jenner posted a slideshow of BTS photos from the shoot. The image that caught the most attention was her mirror selfie featuring her in the “micro thong.”
But what had transpired after the post went up on Instagram was absolute hysteria over the perpetuating issue of body image that our digital age continues to face. With celebrity/influencer culture being a part of daily life, expectations for an ideal body type has been set to near impossible standards.
It didn’t take long for her followers to take to Twitter, TikTok, and the comment section. People fired off their own body insecurities, claiming they could never love their bodies when Kendall Jenner’s looked like that.
And though many met her photos with praise and compliments, it was hard to ignore the slew of incredibly upsetting comments of people shaming their own bodies to hers. Humans across the globe are already struggling enough with body image; approximately 5.5 million Americans have an eating disorder, according to Deloitte as of 2020.
Accusations of Photoshop
Beyond the self-deprecating comments on confidence, some took the route of accusing Kendall Jenner of photoshopping her photos in the post. Even a whole Instagram account devoted to spreading awareness of Instagram’s impact on beauty standards went into a detailed post about how they believe Jenner’s images were edited.
To illustrate, the Instagram account claimed the photo to have: edited proportions, unreal smoothing around her bikini area, and unnatural bends in her arms and legs. The account made it clear that their goal wasn’t to bring Kendall down. They weren’t trying to dismiss the fact that she is gorgeous. Rather, they want to remind everyone that Instagram is constantly edited and discourages people from comparing their bodies to whomever.
Crippled by Comparison
Moreover, society sees major issues in body image, where the comments even led to a response Tweet from Jenner where she said, “I am an extremely lucky girl. Appreciative of all that I have. But I want you to know I have bad days too and that I hear you! You are beautiful just the way you are!!! It’s not always as perfect as it may seem.”
Everyone is constantly flooded with images and ideas of how people want to be perceived. It’s easier to create a persona through social media with posing, lighting, effects and more to appear how you wish, whereas real life has no filters, no perfect 365 or photoshop. And from this men and women are facing pressures to fit a certain body standard like never before.
These pressures unfortunately lead to insecurities, body dysmorphia, eating restrictions/disorders, and an unhealthy mental state.
It’s important to remember to experience social media however best for you and your health. This might mean unfollowing anyone who triggers your negative thoughts or seek out body positive content.
Lift Up Rather than Tear Down
And though there’s no denying that behind every no cellulite, pimple-less, not a stretch mark in sight photo (like the one Kendall Jenner posted) comes money, personal trainers, surgeries, dieting, industry pressure, makeup artists, editing and more, people should focus on supporting others rather than tearing anyone down. However, this ultimately requires transparency.
How do we draw the line between self-expression and expectancy? Because an image was edited, or someone had the money for surgery or dietitians, we must not deem that as shameful either. If you have the money and want that surgery hell yea you go get it. You want to prioritize dieting and fitness in your life? You do that! If you want to post pictures of how sexy you look, then go right ahead and post them!
The point is not to bring anyone down for their own bodily choices and resist commenting on anyone’s body unless it’s purely positive. In short, people will do/pose/work on their bodies however they please and that is no one’s business.
More importantly, people must recognize that standards only exist if we accept them. Social personas aren’t always truthful and beauty is defined through every shape, weight, and size.
Featured image source from: Unsplash.com
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