The New Demands of Beauty

I’m not perfect or immune from wanting to be viewed as beautiful, more so than desired, by the opposite sex. Yet, I’m really beginning to feel either inheritedly bothered or at the very least ambivalent by the this gale of new demands of beauty for women and how did we even get here once again.

I was already trying to wrap my thoughts around this era of the butt implants and butt facials for Instagram, and now with the return of old school corsets or what we’re now calling waist-training, it seems as though the American population of women are split in two halves regarding these new standards: by genuine curiosity (such as myself) and those actually participating in such methods to achieve the highest level of glamour, even if artificially.

A lot of these glamour fads have had my eyes rolling so hard like disappointed legends six feet under, but the one trend I felt myself almost giving into was the waist-training one which I suppose sounded less threatening than “corset”. While aware of how burlesque dancer Dita von Teese achieved her 22 inch waist by wearing traditional trainers for over 10+ years, von Teese’s dream was to be the modern day representation of the misunderstood art form, so her dedication to 1800s way of Slim-Fast seemed plausible even if she was more unabashedly Bettie Page than French royalty.

Today, “waist trainers” have returned as the demand for women, regardless of their natural born shape and size, to obtain hourglass or curvy bodies have may reached it fever pitch. It was shocking enough when butt augmentations actually rose in voluntarily surgeries, but now corsets have been introduced to a new generation that witnesses the attention women with overtly voluptuous figures receive, both the flattery and the disrespectful.

I’ve shared my thoughts before on how the double standards of beauty and upkeep for women and men is haphazard and completely unfair and I still feel this way. It’s complicated (ha) because while I severely avert these expectations placed upon us, it seems as though men do a large percentage less than women to keep up appearances. We already acquiesce to makeup, extensions, high heels, and bodycon dresses, and even when we do these things or wear these clothes by choice (women’s liberation), it’s just seems trivial and we’re once again contemplating or already dedicating ourselves to the gerbil wheel. Lots of women are battling mentally battling as far as not wanting to give in too much to these superficial pressures, but also admitting to themselves that it’s okay to want to be seen as attractive, but where does the fine line get drawn? While men have their own insecurities or second thoughts about what plagues their manhood such as penis size or beer bellies, it remains taboo to discuss these subjects in such wide frame as let’s say morning talk shows while female bodies and hygiene routines are constantly up for discussion. Like, picture your man wearing cock ring regularly just to keep his “member” on deck? That’s a lot of pressure, and quite literally. Like they do is go to the barbershop and call it a day. Women on the other hand have a lot more days ahead of Hairfinity.

Then there’s that damaging quote of “real women have curves”. Not all women are going to be particularly built or round in the desired areas of the hips, butt, and even breasts. Real women have a vagina. You got one? You good. No girl, slender or rounder should be made to feel bad or objectified about their shape which, in a heteronormative world, is hard to come by.

As waist trainers are gaining more popularity through the promotion of some of social media’s most popular celebrities, some have already started to try and warn young female minds from overdoing anything promising get cute quick results, like wearing a waist trainer for too long or remember the trend of diet pills in the early aughts? I considered wearing one just for fun, but I also felt silly considering it. I’m not a von Teese in waiting and I just felt conflicted.

All I’m saying is, if possibly as women, we should take these demands with a grain of highlighter dust. We’re only human and who wants to be seen as less pretty and that’s the damn truth, but the next time we bow down to the expectations, who are we doing it for?

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