We’ve all heard the motivational speeches about how we should love ourselves no matter what. That every girl is beautiful in her own way, and that the secret is to embrace our flaws and flaunt them. And yet, on the opposite side of the equation, women are still shamed for their bodies. They’re still bombarded with the unrealistic expectations set by all of those models, real or instagram ones.
They’re then taught to look at their bodies with disgust and insecurities, even if it’s never said directly. You find them comparing themselves to all of these models and their surrounding circle of friends – even starting from as young as primary school! They seek makeup, extreme diet measures, and even surgery, just to fit in the standards of the society.
Aside from all of the emotional and mental insecurities, many women express dissatisfaction about certain body parts. Here are the most common insecurities:
One of the biggest insecurities that many women and girls share is their body weight. While extreme weight and obesity are bad for their health for all of the different reasons, it’s not being unhealthy that bothers them. Many moderate-weighed women are still insecure about their body, as they keep comparing themselves to the Victoria’s Secret size-zero models.
Even if they fall in the healthy range of the body mass index, they’re still insecure about the extra little fat that favors one specific place over the rest of the body. Women with a double chin can go to extreme measures of liposuction to get rid of it. Those with muffin-tops, love-handles, or some belly fat will pale at the thought of wearing a bikini. Even those with saggy underarms are way too self-conscious about it, and might never wear short-sleeves because of their insecurities.
Another major insecurity is their breasts. Curiously enough, those with too little or too big breasts are both very insecure about it. Women with tiny breasts believe they’re unattractive and can never be sexy. They’re always very insecure about their size and shape, especially if their nipples are on the larger size. The same insecurity hits those with larger breasts, as they constantly worry about their bust-size, their sagging breasts, and how they always attract the first attention whenever they walk (jiggling) into the room. However, at the end of the day, breasts are breasts and all men envy us for having them to ourselves all day long!
The same can be said for those who have flat butts or thin thighs, and those who have some extra fats in the southern lands. Those complaining of extra weight in their butts are always worried about how they look, trying to wear baggy pants and long shirts to cover it. They are also very self-conscious about it sagging or full of cellulite, and they are scared of what their partners might think of that. But how come they can’t see just how curvy and sexy they are!
Meanwhile, those who have flat butts and thin thighs, describe themselves as “boyish” and unattractive. But can’t they see? They enjoy the good life of being so practical and fitting into any dress or pants they dream of.
While stretch marks and cellulite is often associated with being overweight, there are many normal, even underweight, women who are insecure about them too. Stretch marks can occur when your body suddenly grows faster than your skin’s ability to produce enough collagen. So if you’ve experienced a spurt of height in your adolescent years, it’s normal to find some stretch marks over your body- even if you’re not fat at all. Those who’ve experienced sudden and rapid weight loss can also acquire stretch marks and cellulite.
Women who have stretch marks, cellulite, or both, are always very insecure about it. They think they don’t qualify to the standards of a smooth, seamless, glowing skin of the instagram world. They don’t realize that they are real, and that there are more of them out there and those plastic dolls they look up to.
As our skin is one that’s most exposed all of the time, there’s a lot of insecurities that can come with it. The “perfect woman” image builds a skin that’s white, smooth, blushy, soft, and freckle-free. So what can a woman who naturally has an oily skin do? What about the one with very dry skin that breaks during winter? What about dark-skinned girls, those with freckles, or those with pale yellow textures? Every single one of them feels her own insecurities about that, with most of them running to makeup to enhance their appearance and hide their “flaws”.
There are a lot of natural ways to enhance the look and feel of our skin. The best of which is maintaining a healthy lifestyle, balanced diet, and proper hydration. Instead of spending hundreds of dollars on makeup, imagine of the health benefits and enhanced-self image of a woman if she took better care of her health instead of fretting about the society’s standards.
As if there weren’t insecurities to feel, many women feel insecure about the look, shape, and color of their vaginas. Again, as imposed by the unrealistic porn-models expectations, men are starting to think that a woman’s vagina needs to look a certain way to be pretty. Even worse, women are starting to think that way too, and it’s affecting more than their body image. It makes them fear physical intimacy, and so they seek ways of “fixing” their womanhood.
But the list of insecurities never end. Every single woman is unique in her own way, and that uniqueness can easily be converted to an insecurity in a misogynistic society. Here are some more examples of insecurities that many women suffer from:
- “I have a huge nose!”
- “My ears, they’re way too floppy and ugly.”
- “How can anyone like a girl who’s as taller as, or even taller than, him!”
- “Why do I have such chubby fingers?!”
- “I hate this very curly hair. I can never get it straight.”
- “I don’t like this straight and dull hair at all. I wish I could get curls, but it never works!”
- “What’s up with my very straight eyelashes?”
- “My face is way too round and chubby. It never goes away no matter how hard I diet.”
Little do we listen to the voices that encourage us to embrace ourselves as we are, because the other voices, that scream at us with shameful and misogynistic expectations, are much louder and harming. But wouldn’t our lives just be much more beautiful if we listened to our inner voices, the ones that tell us we are enough? The inner voices that assure us were pretty, and that what really matters is how good of a person we are? There’s nothing wrong with wanting to look and feel pretty. It’s only wrong when we do it for the wrong reasons: Like trying to fit in a world that’s not ours. We can try to fit in, but my dear, at what cost?
To read more on topics like this, check out the health category.