The Advocate

Perfect body image is an illusion

By Alondra Gallardo, Opinion Editor

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With summer just around the corner the pressure is on to achieve our “summer body” or our “bikini body.” Little do we know that there is no such thing.

Take the body you have now, put a bikini or swimsuit on it and there you have your summer body.

Over the years I have talked with and posted about self-love and body positivity. I hype up anyone who thinks of themselves as anything other than beautiful, but I almost feel like it’s ironic because I still struggle with it every day.

At one point, my body was my worst enemy. But I am coming to realize the obvious; not everyone’s body is built the same and it is impossible for anyone to force their body into an unrealistic mold — especially a mold that is governed by society’s abstract standards.

It is no secret that the majority of us look up to or have looked up to someone who flaunts a body like the ones in the magazines. Logging onto different social media platforms, watching television and in every magazine, you see these objects of affection inspiring people to live up an unattainable standard.

Creating a false mold that everyone expects to fit into during the summer is no trend it’s something that happens every year.

We try to shove ourselves into them.

I have sought out body toning workouts for summer. Seeing advertisements that read “How to lose 30 pounds in just 2 weeks!” or “Get a bikini body in 4 weeks” is quite unhealthy, but somehow I am compelled to read them.

It seems like the warmer the weather gets the more desperate we become to achieve this look or the more self-conscious we become toward our body and everything that comes with it.

Both lead to us damaging ourselves physically and mentally.

I find it to be a nightmare, picturing myself out in public with summer clothing on while the sun is beaming down on me, because my flaws are out in the open for everyone to see.

Women are expected to be a certain height, not too short, not too tall, have a tiny waist and wide hips to form the perfect hourglass shape.

We are expected to have clear flawless skin that is hair free, stretch mark free, and blemish free.

If a woman is “too” slim, she gets bashed and called a stick or anorexic and gets told to go eat something. If a woman is not a size four she gets called fat and gets told to stop eating and go exercise.

If the only women allowed to wear swimsuits were the ones who looked like television stars, then there would be no one wearing swimsuits.

Reality has been distorted and now photoshopped images define who we have come to look up to.

Rather than accepting what women actually look like, people, sometimes total strangers, feel obligated to offer their 2 cents on what a woman can do to make herself look better.

Keep your irrelevant thoughts to yourselves and come to realization that what we have come to praise and idolized is not real..

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The Student Voice Of Contra Costa College, San Pablo, Calif.
Perfect body image is an illusion