They say beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and when it comes to the perception behind the “perfect” woman’s body shape, it is always going to vary. Though we’ll always be advocates of being yourself and loving the skin you’re in, in today’s social media savvy world where ‘trends’ change faster than we can change our underwear, it can be hard not to feel pressure to conform to what is known as “society’s standards” of beauty, body shape or whatever else.
When it comes to the subject of body shape, and asking what does a “perfect body” look like? It depends who you ask, and in this case, where they are.
UK online pharmacy Superdrug Online Doctors recently created a project called “Perceptions Of Perfection” that featured 18 photoshopped images of the same woman. The company hired designers from countries around the world to photoshop a stock image to reflect the beauty standards of their specific countries. The results are striking, and just from looking at the snaps in the gallery above, you can happily see that there’s no “one size suits all” here. Each of the images, and the enhanced woman in them, all reflect a different perception of the “ideal” shape.
This is the original image sent to the designers:
“Widely held perceptions of beauty and perfection can have a deep and lasting cultural impact on both women and men,” said the authors of the study. “The goal of this project is to understand better potentially unrealistic standards of beauty and to see how such pressures vary around the world.” And vary they do. The differences in all images vary from slight to drastic – photos from China and Italy were dramatically photoshopped to have very thin legs and arms. Images from Colombia, Mexico and Peru, reflect the traditional voluptuous beauty standards of those areas.
The designer’s photoshopped everything from the size of waistline to shoe and hair colour to mold the photo into the ideal body type of that culture. While, alas Ireland isn’t there, it’s intriguing to look at all the images nevertheless.
Out of the 18 designers, 14 were women, and four were men, according to Superdrug. In order to highlight a woman’s perception of their culture’s beauty standards, Superdrug asked the four male designers to photoshop the image based on messages women in their countries receive about what an ideal body should look like.
The study is so interesting. What are your thoughts on this?
See the study in full here.