Our Perception of Beauty- As Forged by the Media

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I was doing a body contouring treatment for my patient today. It was a routine procedure on one of my most motivated patients. She has a normal BMI, exercises regularly and watches her dietary intake like a hawk. We have been doing treatments for a while now and have developed an easy rapport (as we all know, doctor-patient relationships take time). She suddenly asked “Should I continue this treatment indefinitely, will I be able to get Kylie Minogue’s legs?”

The question took me by surprise.

All this time, she was aspiring to look more like the celebrity of her dreams! The media has so expertly and subliminally infused us with the image of the perfect woman. And we are totally sold on the image. We diet, we put on make-up, we seek medical help to become these perfect beings.

My reply was measured, but clear: these pictures are meticulously crafted with professional lighting and make-up to bring out the best in the models. PLUS, most, if not all, of these pictures have been digitally enhanced – legs are made longer, eyes are made bigger, and any unsightly bulge skillfully erased. In short, few can ever attain such figures.

We as doctors are armed with a wide range of treatments, unfortunately, we do not have real life Photoshop for the body. The treatment I have designed for my patient was meant to reduce the fat deposits around the thighs and improve the contour of the thighs – She was on her way to a lovely pair of legs.

Yes, aesthetic beauty is attainable, and bringing out the best in us should be the key, not mere reproductions of the divine images encoded in us by the media. Expectations should be tempered. Do you really want to change into another woman? I will rather have effective and efficient treatments which can enhance my best features and remove some of the unwanted ones.

I came across this video from the Dove Beauty Campaign; and it sums up nicely what this article is describing. Enjoy!

 

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Dr Siew is a medical doctor from Singapore. He runs DrSiew.com to educate the public about aesthetic procedures, and to bring the latest in skin care, anti-aging and aesthetic medical procedures to you. Dr Siew is also a passionate animal welfare advocate. He runs the animal welfare charity, SOSD in Singapore.

4 COMMENTS

  1. Whitening? <BR/>Many methods – most skin care regimes, for one, will make your face brighter and fairer. Most aesthetic treatments as well! <BR/><BR/>And of course.. sunblock!

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