Psychology

Introduction

Different scholars have written much in regard to the body image for the past decades, all indicating that both men and women are obsessed with the body image and are dissatisfied with their respective physical selves. ‘The survey done by Psychology Today Body Image Survey’ on 4000 men and women in relation to the attitudes on their specific body parts and physique revealed that 56% of the women were dissatisfied with their general appearance, 89% of them opted to lose weight. 44% of the girls and 41% of boys within age bracket of 13-19 showed dissatisfaction. The answer as to why these individuals are increasing becoming dissatisfied with their image and appearance is convoluted. This paper focuses on analyzing the aspects involved in the adolescent body image development and creating a body image resources list for parents of adolescents. The first part of the paper analyzes the advertisement on the body image. The advertisement image chosen for analysis in the essay is that of Beyonce adverts on L’OREAL (2012)

Adopted from http://www.beyoncepictures.org/displayimage.php?album=1314&pos=0

  1. What is the intended audience for this advertisement? What age group? Male or female?

The intended audience for the advertisement is female gender because the main message of the adverts is conveyed by the Female model aimed at appealing to the female gender and also it highlights theme of beauty through message “I always want to shine like this.” The age group is between 15 to 40 years. Because this is the group likely to have low perception of themselves after seeing the advert having Beyonce image that to them is a perfect physical appearance.

  1. What subliminal and/or overt messages does this ad send?

The overt message that the advert sends to the audience is that women should chase ‘star appearance’ as that of Beyonce by using L’OREAL lip-gloss. In addition, the advert shows that ladies can eliminate insecure feeling of their lips not shinning by using the product. Finally, it shows that they can achieve shinny appearance that they are craving for through L’OREAL lip-gloss.

  1. How would this ad be interpreted differently by each gender?

The female gender (adolescent and young ladies) would intimate that the advert is sex because of the obsession with the attractiveness and concepts of sexuality identity. The male gender, especially young males and adolescents would interpret the advert as perfect because it features a beautiful and gorgeous model.

  1. Do you think this ad is inaccurate in its portrayal of body image? In what ways?

The advert is inaccurate in its portrayal of the female gender in particular because first the L’OREAL image of Beyonce is unrealistic and persuadable words “I always want to shine like this.” used in it to convince women that they can achieve similar beauty by using the product invokes a sense of insecurity in women about their physical appearance or image. The lips of Beyonce appear flawlessly red and shinny depicting what every lady desires. Additionally, her face and air makes her appear outstanding which makes her to appear unreasonably perfect on the advert with aim of appealing to teenagers and young ladies.

  1. Why do you think this ad and its product may be appealing to an adolescent?

The advert and its products are appealing to an adolescent because it is based on the social norms where attractiveness is the main objective of the female adolescent and have inclination to adopt the ideals of the advert because it is mainstreamed by Beyonce who is a role model to them. Further, most adolescent will look at Beyonce who is a super model unreasonable perfect appearance on the advert and reflect on the way they look nothing like her. This image portrayed to through mainstream media and social media will have a remarkable impact on what the adolescent expects on themselves.

  1. Why do you think the marketers chose to use this content and imagery?

The marketers chose to use this content and imagery to because female adolescent and young ladies are the dominant consumers of the product. This section of the consumers is incessantly pursuing beauty making it vital top focus on rationale of bombarding them with image of perfection through super model. The content is the adverts gives assurance to the audience that they have found the right answer to their pursuit of beauty that will enhance their attractiveness and likeness to the male gender. The aim is to appeal emotionally to adolescent females and young female feeling insecure about their image.

Body image

Body image is an individual inner notion of their physical appearance or image. Such notion may or may not connect with objective reality. Every individual has an image of the physically perfect person within his or her mind and analyzes personal image against this model. Individuals pleased with their body image and appearance have constructive self-image. The psychological creation of the image is influenced by several factors such as sensory, emotional, and cognitive factors. For example, individuals modify the image of their body images in connection to the emotional factors and other reactions in their respective environment. Further, body image is influenced by factors encompassing increasing disparity between the individuals real body weight or image and those of actors, celebrities and models depicted within the media and advertising. Besides, several adolescent females are sexually active as well as, dating at the young ages, thereby heightening their concerns regarding appearance or body image.

Several studies in regard to the body image on the adolescents have been conducted because in this developmental stage the teens undergo immense physical changes and subject themselves to diverse scrutiny episodes (Helm, 2009). The changes of puberty and the accompanying sexual maturation make the adolescents to sense self-conscious as well as, develop a feeling of embarrassment regarding their body image. Adolescent girls are especially vulnerable to the development of pessimistic body image. The girls focus on the appearance as proof of worthiness and ignore their value resulting in the lowered self-esteem.

The perception of the perfect body image has developed with time and continues to change as time progresses (Jeanne, 2010). Some of the factors influencing ideal body image development have been outlined in the preceding paragraph. This section of essay provides resources indispensable in the realistic body image formation during adolescent development.

Baird, A. L. and Grieve, F.G. (2006). Exposure of male models in advertisements leads to a decrease in men’s body satisfaction. North Am J Psychol. 8:115-121’

The resource provides a study conducted to measure the impact of the exposure to the adverts featuring male models on the male body satisfaction. The study was conducted through sets of magazine adverts featuring cologue or clothing products associated with men. The study shows that the idealized images in the adverts results in issues such as disorders and anabolic steroid use. The resources is useful because it explains to the adolescent that the images in the media are unrealistic that can not be realized in the normal circumstances. For example, media presentation of the socially ideal body shapes (muscular body for men and thin for ladies) is unrealistic (Baird and Grieve, 2006). Further, it is significant in preparing adolescent youths on reality regarding adverts to prevent stimulation effects from the adverts.

Gervais, S. J., Vescio, T. K. and Allen, J. (2011). When what you see is what you get: The consequences of the objectifying Gaze for women and men. Psychology of Women Quarterly, 35(1): 5-17.”

This resource analyzes objectifying gaze effects on the maths feat, body dissatisfaction, body surveillance, and body shame. The resource posits that objectifying gaze leads to stereotypical threat that arouses concerns regarding social connections, and increased female motivation for engagement in interactions. However, objectifying gaze never influences body dissatisfaction and shame. The resource gives direction on the approaches to compliment the adolescent females to minimize their vulnerability to developing negative body image resulting from their environment. For instance, the rationale of objectifying gaze to females indicates appreciation of their values that will give them belonging certainty (Gervais et al, 2011).

Jeanne, B. M. 2010. The development of ideal body image perceptions in the United States. Nutrition Today, 45(3): 98-110.”

This resource addresses the rationale of idealized body images and the various sources that are indispensable in managing adolescents against developing a sense of insecure feeling because of exposure to idealized images in media. The resource describes models in print media, video games and sports people as conveyers of idealized images. It has a list of the sources that are vital in managing the impact of adolescent exposure to idealized images. The resource is useful because it analyzes the sources of the idealized images that affect adolescent perception of their own images. Further, it provides a list of the sources for managing influences of the idealized images on youths. Parents can borrow from these sources.

Chapter 6 exploring adolescent sexuality in: Santrock, W. J. (2012) Adolescence. (14th Ed). London: McGraw-Hill”

The resource (exploring adolescent sexuality chapter six) on the “sexual culture” portion explores the broad context of the adolescent sexuality with the American culture. It posits that sexual behavior among the adolescents is an extension of the trend by adults. Further, it shows that media has significant influence over adolescent sexual behavior orientation, with those exposed to sex in media exposed more to it. The resource is useful in depicting the genesis of the sexual culture among the youths as that rooted in the adults’ sexual trends. Further, it shows that media plays great role in influencing the adolescents. The parent can use the source to addresses various issues to adolescent regarding their sexual orientation, like safe sexual orientation approaches.

Chapter 6 exploring adolescent sexuality in: Santrock, W. J. (2012) Adolescence. (14th Ed). London: McGraw-Hill”

The resource particularly section on the “Developing a sexual identity” addresses complexity encountered by adolescents in understanding sexual feelings and forming sexual identity (p.190). The discussion shows that social norms strongly affect adolescent sexual identity. Further, it posits that sexual identity encompasses behavior styles, activities, as well as interests. The resource is useful to parents in helping manage their adolescent body image perception since it gives the areas to target like social norms like interaction with their peers. It will help the adolescent perceive their body as developed rather than undeveloped because of lack of sexual exposure.

Chapter 6 exploring adolescent sexuality in: Santrock, W. J. (2012) Adolescence. (14th Ed). London: McGraw-Hill”

The section on “Heterosexual attitudes and behavior” addresses development of the sexual activities development in adolescents. It addresses issues to do with oral sex and compares sexual orientation cross-culturally. Also the resources analyzes sexual scripts role in adolescent sexual identities. The resource is significant because it can help parent guide adolescent perception of their sexual orientation based on the different sexual scripts identified by ether of the gender. Moreover, parents will get guidance on the rationale that adolescent in the diverse geographic regions have diverse sexual identity that would affect their body image perception.

Chapter 6 exploring adolescent sexuality in: Santrock, W. J. (2012) Adolescence. (14th Ed). London: McGraw-Hill”

Finally, the “further exploration of sexuality in emerging adults” section in the book explores the heterosexual behavior and attitudes among the emerging youths. It indicates that males have had far more sexual partners than their female counterparts. Further, it shows that religious adults have had relatively few sexual partners compared to less religious individuals. Finally, males are more permissive attitude compared to females in regard to sexuality. The resource is useful in that it will assist parents know how to mould sexual attitudes of the adolescents in regards to the contemporary youth trends. It offers the basis of highlighting the consequences of some of the sexual behavior depicted in the media.

King James Version Online. (2012). Genesis 1:26-28. Retrieved 18th November 2012 from http://www.kingjamesbibleonline.org/.”

The verse posits that God created man in his own image to rule everything on earth. He created both male and female and blessed them to be fruitful. The resource is useful to the parent because they will invoke it in the assisting children of the some idealized images they are bombarded with in media by implying that body is sacred dwelling of God. It is indispensable to maintaining that human beings are not only created in shape and form with God, but also in character that is being mutilated by the media unrealistic images of female and male bodies.

King James Version Online. (2012). Proverbs 13: 20. Retrieved 18th November 2012 from http://www.kingjamesbibleonline.org/.”

This verse argues that individuals walking with wise remain wise while adolescents in company of fools suffer. It questions individual against wrong choice of friends. The resource is useful to parent since they can encourage the teens to chose the right relationships for themselves. It would guide the parents in guiding the adolescents to be cautious and selective in choice of their friends. The truth in this verse would help adolescents to identify with God and avoid uncertainty regarding their identity. Help the student get through the pressure inherent in adolescent.

King James Version Online. (2012). Psalm55: 22. Retrieved 18th November 2012 from http://www.kingjamesbibleonline.org/. ”

This verse posits that individuals should turn to God when they come across a daunting task. Individuals should turn to God first rather engaging in other destructive options. The resource is useful to the parent in managing conflicting body image perception it will help them remember that the bible says they should turn to God for guidance rather than sex or other things like drug. It would caution youth on turning to media images to address innate body features like appearance.

King James Version Online. (2012). Proverbs 3: 5. Retrieved 18th November 2012 from http://www.kingjamesbibleonline.org/. ”

This verse maintains that individuals should cast their burden to God and God will sustain them. Further, individuals should trust in God with everything and shun the inclination of relying on their understanding. The resource is useful to the parent in teaching the adolescents to avoid inclination of leaning toward the pictures portrayed in media about ideal body image rather trust what body appearance that God has given them. It will help parents in assisting adolescent get over adolescent stage bombarded with numerous ideal body images.

King James Version Online. (2012). Psalms 139: 19. Retrieved 18th November 2012 from http://www.kingjamesbibleonline.org/. ”

This verse maintains that individuals are wonderfully and fearfully created. It posits that the human being image is unique and sacred. The resource is useful to parents in helping adolescent overcome perception of poor body image using idealized images from media. It would create a point of reference in regard to the adolescent identity rather than copying a sense of style of celebrities.

King James Version Online. (2012). Isaiah 43: 4. Retrieved 18th November 2012 from http://www.kingjamesbibleonline.org/”

This verse posits that human beings are prized in God sight and God loves them the way they are, loves their appearance. Human being image is valuable to God. The source is useful to parent because it will help them in making adolescents understand truth regarding their image and assist them in discovering their true identity in God rather than on idealized images in media and other sources.

Girl Scouts of the United States of America. (2012). Body Image. Retrieved 18th November 2012 from http://www.girlscouts.org/research/facts_findings/body_image.asp”

This resource posits that adolescent perception of their body image is not only under influence of self-perceptions, but also under influence of others. It presents statistics showing that adolescents suffer from body image dissatisfaction. Finally, it shows that mothers play significant role in guiding adolescent in healthy living. The resource is useful to parent by giving confidence to them that they have role to play in shaping their adolescent adoption of physical images from various sources. Finally, it gives avenues through which adolescent are bombarded with images that parents need to manage such as models in media.

Helm, S. K. (2009). Body discrepancy and body satisfaction: influence on approach and avoidance behaviors and emotions. Retrieved 18th November 2012 from http://www.colorado.edu/geography/class_homepages/geog_4501_sm06/WCChina.pdf”

The source maintains that body image is significant to individuals and it is depicted through various avenues like media. It argues that body image and dissatisfaction effect is far much greater in women than in men through self-discrepancy theory. The source is significant to parent as they would tie behaviors of the adolescent to theory and focus on ways of managing it without causing tension between themselves and adolescents. It gives an avenue that parent can use to enable their student gain self-identity.

Pbs. (2002). The Winners are. Retrieved 18th November 2012 from http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/amex/missamerica/sfeature/sf_list.html”

The source outlines the list of Miss America from 1920 to 2002. The statistics indicate that the average age is 20 years and 3 months and average weight of 121 pounds. The source is useful in that it gives the parent avenue to assist adolescent accept their body image by showing that models depicts body image is not ideal since they come from different states in U.S. The parent can use the source to echo that adolescent should not despise their body appearance and crave that of models that is transient because they tend to win only once.

Center for Disease Control and Prevention. (2012). Body and Mind (BAM) Teacher’s Corner. Retrieved 18th November 2012 from http://www.bam.gov/teachers/body_image.html”

The source focuses on engaging the adolescent in the activity in which they are to discuss affect toys have on the adolescent perception of what is normal, and their physical and mental health. Further, through Ad Decoder student analyzes the adverts messages on body image and effect on health. The resource is significant for parent because it will allow for engaging the adolescent interactively in knowing the unrealistic body images on adverts effect on their health. Moreover, it would interactively reinforce other sources messages and it will be captivating to adolescent because of the interactivity option.

Gupta S. (2008).Taking on the thin-ideal. Retrieved 18th November 2012 from http://www.time.com/time/specials/2007/article/0, 28804, 1703763_1703764_1810730, 00.html”

The source posits that there is nothing new with the media portrayal of thin models and feeding adolescents with unrealistic ideals about their beauty. It posits that University of Texas psychologist came up with ‘body activism’ to allow girls defend themselves against rationales of unhealthy beauty images. It maintains that a lot of girls have enrolled in studying how media has been duping them with the unrealistic images. This source is useful first it echoes parent argument that media models present unrealistic beauty images. Second, it would boast the campaign by showing that parents are the only one confronting the irrationality of the images. Finally, it would invoke adolescent voluntary interest in studying illusions of models images.

References

Baird, A. L. and Grieve, F.G. (2006). Exposure of male models in advertisements leads to a decrease in men’s body satisfaction. North Am J Psychol. 8:115-12.

Center for Disease Control and Prevention. (2012). Body and Mind (BAM) Teacher’s Corner. Retrieved 18th November 2012 from http://www.bam.gov/teachers/body_image.html

Gervais, S. J., Vescio, T. K. and Allen, J. (2011). When what you see is what you get: The consequences of the objectifying Gaze for women and men. Psychology of Women Quarterly, 35(1): 5-17.

Girl Scouts of the United States of America. (2012). Body Image. Retrieved 18th November 2012 from http://www.girlscouts.org/research/facts_findings/body_image.asp

Gupta S. (2008).Taking on the thin-ideal. Retrieved 18th November 2012 from http://www.time.com/time/specials/2007/article/0, 28804, 1703763_1703764_1810730, 00.html

Helm, S. K. (2009). Body discrepancy and body satisfaction: influence on approach and avoidance behaviors and emotions. Retrieved 18th November 2012 from http://www.colorado.edu/geography/class_homepages/geog_4501_sm06/WCChina.pdf

Jeanne, B. M. 2010. The development of ideal body image perceptions in the United States. Nutrition Today, 45(3): 98-110.

Jeanne, B. M. 2010. The development of ideal body image perceptions in the United States. Nutrition Today, 45(3): 98-110.

King James Version Online. (2012). Genesis 1:26-28. Retrieved 18th November 2012 from http://www.kingjamesbibleonline.org/

King James Version Online. (2012). Isaiah 43: 4. Retrieved 18th November 2012 from http://www.kingjamesbibleonline.org

King James Version Online. (2012). Proverbs 13: 20. Retrieved 18th November 2012 from http://www.kingjamesbibleonline.org/

King James Version Online. (2012). Proverbs 3: 5. Retrieved 18th November 2012 from http://www.kingjamesbibleonline.org/.

King James Version Online. (2012). Psalm55: 22. Retrieved 18th November 2012 from http://www.kingjamesbibleonline.org/

King James Version Online. (2012). Psalms 139: 19. Retrieved 18th November 2012 from http://www.kingjamesbibleonline.org/

Pbs. (2002). The Winners are. Retrieved 18th November 2012 from http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/amex/missamerica/sfeature/sf_list.html

Santrock, W. J. (2012) Adolescence, 14th Ed. London: McGraw-Hill.

The 1997 Body Image Survey Results. Psychology Today. Jan-Feb, 1997.

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