Does the portrayal of thin models in fashion advertisements promote body consciousness amongst Singaporean teenage girls?

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 “Does the portrayal of thin models in fashion advertisements promote body consciousness amongst Singaporean teenage girls?”

In this day and age, lean and small-sized women are placed in print advertisements with a focus on fashion. These advertisements are exposed to rising numbers of teenage girls numbering to the hundreds of thousands due to their exposure to the media and new media. It is not the only thing that is rising however; cases in anorexia, bulimia and liposuction have also risen. Conversely, not only has negative cases surfaced but also ones that are positive, such as leading a healthy lifestyle through healthy dieting and exercising regularly. The media is responsible for the high occurrence of these cases, and I believe that the media is in a way responsible for both these positive and negative cases amongst teenagers. Through my research, I want to discover if there is such a link between the media and such impacts.  If such a link exists, the media will have to take into consideration such impacts before placing lean women in fashion advertisements.

In the 1940’s, fashion models such as Dorian Leigh were curvaceous and celebrated for being “real women”. However, in the mid 1960’s the ‘heroin-chic’ look was initiated with the arrival of Twiggy. Now fashion models are size zeros or twos at the most. The requirements for models in the past was 5 feet, 5 inches tall as well as having an hourglass figure according to The British Association of Model Agents (AMA). In the present, according to Ford modeling agency, on of the biggest modeling agencies in fashion, the minimum height requirement now being 5 feet 9 inches tall as well as having specific measurements for their bust, waist and hips, all of which fall in the ‘small’ range. Their body also has to be well-toned and proportioned. Symmetrical features are also a must and models have to have a certain “look” that is currently in fashion as determined by the modeling industry. Presently, teenagers are exposed to around 30,000 fashion advertisements per year with 80% of those models being female according to the New York Times.

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Possible impacts of small-sized models appearing in fashion advertisements have been recently brought to light. Of such impacts, positive cases have also arisen for example, by aspiring to look like those women in advertisements, it might promote regular exercise amongst teenage girls. By exercising regularly, it promotes a healthy lifestyle and body, reducing health problems in a later age such as heart disease. Another possible positive impact is that teenage girls may follow healthy diet plans, such as cutting down on unnecessary calorie intake as well as consuming healthy food in order to achieve the body shape of the many ...

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