Unrealistic Beauty Standards: 8 Important Ways to Break Free From Them 

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Hey, see that actress with picture-perfect booty! Or that Korean actress with glass skin. Isn’t it just swoon-worthy? Why don’t you have that? Why do you have so many imperfections? Why? Because you are a human and you tend to be imperfect. Unlike those picture-perfect actresses, you’re real! Welcome to today’s blog where we challenge the unrealistic beauty standards of the world! 

From airbrushed magazine covers to filtered social media posts, today’s society bombards you with unrealistic images of beauty. These perpetuated beauty standards create a damaging cycle of comparison, self-doubt, and even self-hate in your mind. 

Let’s be real here. No one is immune from social media’s filtered beauty standards. These unrealistic beauty standards have plagued our society for far too long. 

But you know what?

It’s time for you to strive for a different and changed world. A world where beauty is celebrated in its diverse forms and where everyone feels seen, accepted, and loved for who they truly are. 

It’s time for you to break free from the chains of such unrealistic beauty standards and embrace yourself in all your imperfect glory. Together, you all can create a more inclusive and body-positive world.

Today, you’re embarking on a journey – a journey to break free from the false beauty standards that sneak into your life like uninvited guests. From the flawless images on social media to the ‘sculpted’ body ideals, you’re about to reclaim your individuality. 

So, grab your metaphorical sledgehammer because you’re going to smash those beauty standards and celebrate the unique beauty that makes you, you! 


Unrealistic Beauty Standards: 8 Important Ways to Break Free From Them 

In today’s digital (and kinda fake) society, you have long been bombarded with relentless images and ideals of what you “should” look like. These narrow and unrealistic beauty standards have been designed to make you feel inferior and inadequate. 

From the hourglass figure of Hollywood stars to the super-skinny aesthetic of K-dramas, these unrealistic beauty standards are glorified by celebrities all over the world (except a few).

This glorification has damaging consequences on people’s body image and mental health. 

Studies show how the pressure to conform to these standards has resulted in the increased popularity of weight loss injections, plastic surgeries, and extreme/fad diets. 

Before diving into how you can protect yourself from such false beauty standards, let’s see how society has set them for you. 

5 Most Common Unhealthy Beauty Standards 

Here are some of the most unhealthy beauty standards you can find in today’s world:


1. Unrealistic Body Shape and Size

You may have come across various people in society who often promote a very narrow ideal of beauty. This ideal often revolves around a specific body shape i.e. big breasts and booty size and a slim stomach. Sounds relatable? Well, it is prevalent everywhere.

This unrealistic expectation may have led you to feel body dissatisfaction and unhealthy behaviors. You try to achieve that set shape and eat minimal to nothing to achieve this shape. I have been a victim of it all my teenage. 


2. Flawless Complexion

Do you also want flawless, fair skin or complexion? 

This is another unhealthy beauty standard imposed by society on your mind. Society often equates clear, blemish-free skin with beauty and perfection. When you hear such things you often start comparing yourself to these ideals set by society. This contributes to your increased self-consciousness and a negative relationship with your own skin. 

Being a fair-skinned girl, I have been on the other side of this beauty standard. I have had people compare other girls around me with me, which made them feel inferior.


3. Age-Defying

There is significant pressure all around the world to maintain a youthful appearance. Wrinkles, grey hair, and other signs of aging are often stigmatized and deemed undesirable in society.

Living with such ideals since childhood often creates a mindset where you think that aging is a messy and unwanted process. When in reality, it’s a blessing to grow old. These beauty standards often pose insecurity and anxiety, especially in women, about the natural process of getting older. 


4. Photoshop and Filters

The widespread use of photo editing tools and filters on social media platforms has created so many unrealistic beauty standards. 

When you see these altered images, you get the impression that flawless skin, perfect bodies, and other unattainable attributes are the norm when they are bizarre attempts by people who are too afraid to own their real bodies. This even leads to feelings of inadequacy and comparison.


5. Gendered Expectations

Beauty standards are often heavily influenced by gender norms. While a man is expected to have a muscular, V-shaped physique, a woman is expected to be slim with curves in all the right places. These rigid standards are not just restrictive but they also limit the diversity of beauty in this world.


We, as a society, need to challenge these unhealthy beauty standards as it’s important for us to promote self-acceptance, inclusivity, and body positivity. 

To create a more inclusive and compassionate society, we need to embrace and celebrate diversity in all its forms. You need to prioritize your well-being and redefine beauty beyond societal expectations.

Understanding the Impact of Unrealistic Beauty Standards

Rigid beauty ideals are fuelling body dissatisfaction and poor self-image in so many people. They also result in significant economic costs in treating issues like eating disorders, depression, and anxiety. 

The beauty and diet industries thrive on telling you what is “wrong” with your appearance, robbing you of hope, empowerment, and comfort in your own skin. They constantly shift the goalposts, reinforcing the message that you are never enough.  

This toxic cycle of shame and dissatisfaction keeps you hooked on products that often have harmful side effects and rarely deliver the promised results. So, let’s now delve deep into the impact caused by such unhealthy beauty standards. 


1. Mental Health Ramifications

Ever felt the weight of trying to fit into society’s idea of beauty? I know I have. 

As a healthy, chubby girl, I have dealt with “funny” name-calling all my life. I get body-shamed even to date.

Do you know there’s a link between these beauty standards and feelings of anxiety, stress, and self-esteem? 

When beauty ideals are imposed on you, it can sometimes feel like heavy baggage. You start feeling self-conscious, and slowly it causes a dip in your confidence and in turn your self-esteem. It can even cost you your mental and overall well-being.

Do you know your mental health is way too precious to be compromised by society’s ideals? 

Numerous studies have shown the direct correlation between beauty standards and mental health issues such as anxiety, depression, eating disorders, and body dysmorphia. 

These ideals create an unattainable standard of beauty, leaving you feeling inadequate and unworthy. The pressure to conform to these standards can devastate your self-esteem. Slowly, it leads to various issues like anxiety, stress, etc. 


2. Body Image Struggles

From morning to night, you are bombarded with these so-called “ideal” body and beauty standards. Magazines, social media, and billboard hoardings all paint this picture of perfection, lending fire to the existing body image issues. It’s tough not to get caught up in it.

You are expected to look a certain way. 

Have you ever felt the pressure to measure up to these standards? If yes, you are definitely not alone. 

The constant comparison game kicks in, and suddenly, your body is the battleground. You scrutinize every flaw, every imperfection as if it’s some kind of failure.

But here’s the thing, these beauty standards are often airbrushed illusions. While you obviously can’t be the same as another person, these standards bring you to the threshold where you can’t even silence these unwanted opinions. 

So you start criticizing yourself!

But have you ever wondered how much of what you see is real and how much is a carefully crafted facade?

The impact on your body image is colossal. It’s like carrying an invisible weight, a burden that is not yours to bear. This constant quest for an unrealistic ideal leads to self-esteem plummeting.

The only way to save yourself from this mental havoc is to recognize that beauty comes in infinite forms, shapes, and sizes. Thus, challenge these standards, not yourself. 


3. Influence on Relationships

Ever feel the pressure to fit into the beauty mold of society?

Unhealthy beauty standards not only affect you. It also seeps into your relationships, making you doubt if you measure up. This messes with how you interact with your people, sometimes leading to judgments solely based on appearance.

In romantic relationships, these standards plant the seeds of insecurity and feelings of not being good enough.

And social media? Oh boy, it cranks up the pressure, creating expectations that mess with how you see yourself and your significant other. It even makes you afraid to be vulnerable, showing your true self without fearing judgment.

But it’s high time to say no to these standards in your relationships! 

Let’s cultivate connections where being real matters more than looking perfect. When you embrace diverse beauty standards, your relationships become healthier. You appreciate and celebrate each other beyond what society says is ideal.

Breaking free from these false beauty standards allows you to build connections based on having genuine feelings, accepting each other, and truly appreciating what makes you unique. 

This ultimately leads to relationships that aren’t just good but downright fulfilling.


4. Capitalism Perpetuating Unrealistic Beauty Standards

With massive conglomerates profiting from your insecurities, the beauty and personal care industry is valued at billions of dollars. These companies offer products that promise to fix all your perceived flaws, instilling hope that is often short-lived. Falling prey to these marketing tactics not only drains your wallet but also leaves you feeling unhappier than before.

Capitalism throws beauty ideals at you, creating constant pressure to conform to a specific standard. It permeates various aspects of your life, influencing how you perceive yourself and others, often leading to judgments solely based on appearance. This perpetuation of unrealistic beauty standards through capitalism influences your daily interactions, shaping the way you are evaluated in various settings.  

In the realm of social media, capitalism cranks up the pressure that creates market-driven expectations distorting how you perceive beauty. It even makes you hesitant to be authentic, showing your true self without fearing judgment. 

Thus, it’s time to resist the influence of capitalism in perpetuating these beauty standards.

Imagine a world where authenticity matters more than conforming to market-driven ideals. When you challenge the commodification of beauty, you appreciate and celebrate uniqueness beyond what capitalism deems as ideal.

Breaking free from these unrealistic beauty standards allows you to embrace genuine interactions, accepting yourself and others without the constraints of market-driven beauty norms. And guess what? That leads to a world where individuality and authenticity are valued over conforming to these fake standards. 

This is me in my unfiltered form, with no makeup and not trying to fit in.

beauty standards

5. Social Media’s filtered reality 

Do you ever feel the pressure to project an ideal version of yourself in line with the false narratives presented by social media? 

Social media creates FOMO. It often presents a filtered reality, prompting you to showcase curated snippets of your life. It shapes your perceptions, often leading to unwanted judgments based on selectively presented moments.

The filtered reality of social media influences your interactions, setting expectations that may not align with the complexities of your authentic experiences. These curated narratives often instill insecurities, making you feel less about yourself.

It’s time to recognize and challenge this filtered reality. It’s time to create a space where your authenticity triumphs over the pursuit of an artificially perfected image.

When you resist the pressure to conform to these filtered ideals, you embrace a more genuine representation of yourself and others. 

Breaking free from these beauty standards also allows for connections based on authenticity, acceptance, and appreciation for the diversity of real-life experiences. This ultimately leads to a social media environment where authenticity is valued and you can truly connect beyond the confines of filtered realities. 


6. Thin body Ideal 

Ever felt the weight of society’s relentless pursuit of the thin body ideal? The constant pressure to fit into a specific mold that dictates beauty standards can be overwhelming. 

Have you found yourself questioning your worth based on these unrealistic expectations?

This often leads to a myriad of insecurities and self-doubt, as you strive to achieve a body shape that may not align with your natural build. It leads to the emotional toll of feeling inadequate when you measure up to an ideal that is often unattainable and unsustainable.

But here’s the truth: Chasing the thin body ideal is not a healthy or realistic goal. It can even contribute to physical and mental health issues, fostering a negative relationship with your body.  

The emphasis on thinness overlooks the diversity of body shapes and sizes, promoting a singular standard that fails to celebrate your uniqueness.

It’s time to challenge this thin body ideal and embrace the idea that beauty comes in various forms, sizes, and shapes. Your worth is not determined by conforming to a narrow standard; it’s found in accepting and loving yourself for who you are. 

Breaking free from the thin body ideal also allows for a more positive and inclusive perspective on beauty, where diversity is celebrated and self-love takes precedence over unattainable standards.


7. Comparison Culture

We’ve all been there – comparing ourselves to others, wondering if we measure up. Let’s have a heart-to-heart about why comparison is the thief of joy and how we can stop that thief in its tracks.

Ever caught yourself ensnared in the unyielding grip of comparison when it comes to beauty standards?

Have you experienced the weight of trying to conform to societal expectations, questioning why your image doesn’t align with someone else’s perceived ideal?

This ceaseless comparison of your appearance to others can be draining. 

Comparison in the realm of beauty standards often breeds dissatisfaction and a sense of inadequacy. It’s a shared struggle, contending with the subtle but persistent pressure to match up to others’ appearances, adhering to a narrow definition of beauty.

But let’s face it: Comparison steals the joy of embracing your unique beauty. It obscures the appreciation for your appearance, as you measure yourself against a standard that fails to recognize the diversity and uniqueness inherent in everyone.

Breaking free from the shackles of comparison in the beauty realm is empowering. It allows you to celebrate your distinct features, appreciate your unique beauty, and reject the notion that there’s a one-size-fits-all definition of attractiveness.

So, let’s shift the focus from comparing to celebrating. Your beauty is uniquely yours, marked by individuality and diversity. In embracing this shift, you reclaim the freedom to appreciate your appearance without constantly measuring it against others.

Your beauty is not meant to fit into someone else’s mold; it’s meant to be celebrated for its unique expression.



How to Overcome Toxic Beauty Standards: A Guide to Embracing Your Authenticity

Breaking free from the grip of unrealistic beauty standards seems like a daunting task. Yet it is essential for your long-term well-being and self-acceptance. Here are some practical steps you can take to embrace your authentic self and challenge societal beauty norms:


1. Self-Reflection: Unveiling the Real Cause of Insecurities

Your bodies often become your easy targets for coping with deeper emotional issues such as trauma, fear of rejection, and low self-esteem. In such situations, take time for self-reflection. Explore the underlying causes of your insecurities. By understanding and addressing these root issues, you can begin your journey toward healing and self-acceptance. 


2. Positive Self-Talk: Treating Yourself with Compassion

Ever found yourself being a harsh self-critic? Constantly bombarding yourself with negative thoughts about your appearance? Don’t worry, you aren’t alone. 

How to stop this? 

Start speaking to yourself as you would to a dear friend or your younger self. Use kind and compassionate language to reconnect with your body lovingly and protectively. Build a positive relationship with yourself.


3. Embracing Diversity: Redefining Beauty Standards

Diversify your social media feed and challenge the traditional notions of beauty. Recognize that there are endless ways to be beautiful and that beauty comes in all shapes, sizes, and differences. When feelings of inadequacy arise, question the origins of these beliefs. Unfollow, restrict, mute, or block the people or influencers who make you feel bad about yourself. 

Have they been perpetuated by the media or personal experiences? 

By curating your social media algorithm to include empowering anti-diet and toxic beauty culture content, you can reshape your perception of beauty and find inspiration in the diversity of humanity. 


4. Mindful Movement: Discovering Joy in Exercise

Exercise is a wonderful way to promote physical and mental health, provided it is approached with a healthy mindset. Instead of using exercise as a means to punish or change your body, strive to find movement that brings you joy. Engage in activities that you genuinely enjoy and would continue doing even if they didn’t alter your appearance.

I have learned to enjoy and incorporate this mindful movement through yoga. It is the most beautiful part of my whole day when I connect with my body and feel good about myself.

Thus, focus on the positive effects exercise has on your well-being rather than its impact on your physical appearance.   


5. Join the Fight: Getting Active Against Toxic Beauty Culture

Take a stand against toxic beauty culture by getting involved in groups and organizations that promote body positivity and challenge societal beauty norms. 

By connecting with activists and learning about how capitalism and patriarchy profit from your insecurities, you can gain a deeper understanding of why it is crucial to fight against these standards. 

Engaging in these discussions and supporting these initiatives provides a healthy outlet and a reminder of the importance of breaking free from toxic beauty standards for both your own good and that of the whole society. 


6. Creating a Supportive Circle: Confiding in Loved Ones

Talking to trusted friends and family members about your body image and self-esteem issues can help reduce the stigma and shame associated with these struggles. 

However, it’s important to acknowledge that not everyone will be supportive, as these beauty standards are deeply ingrained in society. In such cases, it may be necessary to have difficult conversations or set boundaries with people who make triggering comments. 

Hence, surround yourself with people who uplift and support you in embracing your authentic self.


7. Seeking Professional Help: Guidance on the Healing Journey

If you find that your body image concerns are severe and impact your daily life, seeking professional help from a psychologist or dietitian can be immensely beneficial. 

Finding the right mental health professional may take time, but having a trained and compassionate source of professional support and guidance can make a significant difference in your healing journey. 


8. Embracing True Freedom: Detaching Self-Worth from Appearance

Unlearning the lessons imposed by society and embracing your authentic self may initially feel daunting and challenging. It takes time and energy to challenge deeply ingrained beliefs about beauty and self-worth. 

However, with perseverance and self-compassion, you can detach your self-worth from your appearance and reject the societal messages that dictate how you should look.  

By realizing that your happiness and confidence come from within, you become less susceptible to toxic messages that promise a happier and more meaningful life through a certain physical appearance.


In a world inundated with unrealistic beauty standards, it can be challenging to remember that you are perfectly whole just as you are. 

However, by breaking free from these toxic ideals, you not only liberate yourself but also contribute to dismantling the deeply rooted systems of oppression. 

Beauty should be celebrated in all its forms and true freedom lies in the acceptance and celebration of your unique self. 

So, choose yourself before you choose these beauty standards. So, let us strive to create a world where everyone feels empowered, valued, and beautiful in their own unique way.