In the media we are shown are very narrow view of what ‘beauty’ is and what the human body looks like. Studies show that only seeing white, thin, able bodied conventionally beautiful + photo shopped images increases rates of depression, anxiety, low self esteem and low self worth, even after only 15 minutes a day of exposure, to these narrow focused images. It also actively increases disordered body image change behaviours, disordered eating and body image concerns. In short, what we see on social media has massive impacts on our mental health, self esteem, self worth, how we feel about our bodies and how we eat.
Exposing ourselves regularly to images of people who don’t fit society’s narrow view of beauty is good for us! And if we don’t fit the social norm of beauty because of our size, colour of our skin, disability, scars, texture of our skin or whatever, seeing other’s who look like us and are considered beautiful is powerful and humanising and amazing for our mental well being.
So, below are some social media accounts, books, podcasts and websites you can follow, the list is not exhaustive and there will definitely be many others you could look at. But the below list is a good start to help you redefine ‘normal’ and ‘beautiful’.