Scrolling through social media platforms, society can be bombarded by posts encouraging body positivity for both men and women.
However, it is a lot easier to encourage body positivity than it is to actually embody it. For example, this February, Abercrombie & Fitch announced the launch of its new ad campaign called ‘Face You Fierce.’
The store that previously targeted only ‘attractive’ people has transitioned to targeting a new diverse and inclusive audience. Despite their efforts of inclusivity, the company still may be having trouble abandoning their previous practice of featuring pictures of men with washboard abs and women below a size three on their website.
While nothing is wrong with having a muscular or lean body, the reality is that not everyone looks like that and these models contribute to the negative body image obtained by society. Members of society believe that they will not be beautiful until they achieve the specific mold that has been created for this generation.
But Abercrombie & Fitch is not alone in their efforts in encouraging body positivity while contradicting themselves through their actions. Many of us make it a habit to encourage people to do what makes them feel beautiful, sexy or masculine.
As the encouragement for others has increased, the encouragement we have for ourselves is lacking. We have a problem with encouraging others to do what makes them happy while failing to accept the same kind of happiness for ourselves.
It is possible that society has created its own definition or expectation of beauty, but we are beginning to believe that society thinks that in order to obtain beauty a person must be exactly what he or she is not. We wait for remarks about how we look like we have lost weight, or our biceps have gotten bigger before we can be satisfied with the progress we have actually made as if the progress we have made in becoming a better all-around person is not enough.
It is true that we have made advances in empowering others, but the areas in which we could improve are believing that we are enough just by being the exact person we are, in any shape or form.