The Changing Concept of Beauty In America, as well as around the world, women and men are bombarded by ever changing images of "beautiful women." In magazines, television shows, music videos, and all other forms of media, the ideal body type is transformed by the media and perpetuated by the consumer. The images have varied throughout the history of media, occasionally reaching physically damaging levels. Images have spanned from the voluptuous bodies in ancient and renaissance art, to antebellum corset wearers, to the blond bomb-shell of the 50 s, to the "waif" and "heroin she ek" models, to finally the revival of curves from Jennifer Lopez. These popular images of beautiful women are a constant thread seen in art and are ever changing, leaving women forever trying to keep up at all costs.
These images are seen by the world as the physical attributes that make a woman beautiful. This ideal image has always been depicted by the arts but, has drastically changed through the centuries and, on occasion, has taken a less realistic, unnatural, and unhealthy turn. The questions "Does art imitate life or does life imitate art?" and "What are the effects of unnatural beauty images?" Today, many women would prefer to be thin than healthy. 5 The psychological impact of models like Kate Moss and Pamela Anderson is evident in the number of recorded eating disorders and plastic surgeries. In the United States alone, in 2004, approximately 7 million girls and women were reported to struggle with eating disorders. 6 During 2003, Women had nearly 7.
2 million cosmetic procedures, 87 percent of the national total and the top 2 5 Hoey makers, Mandy. Twiggy. 2003. 1 June 2003.