In flipping through the glossy pages of your monthly selection of trends and tips, have you ever wondered what it would be like if women could stop idolizing fashion magazines? From Elle to Vogue, each issue could seem full of indispensable advice, for which we would be lost without reading every month. But between the pages of these magazines could lurk a hidden message that you wouldn’t easily recognize. With these 7 reasons to stop idolizing fashion magazines, you’ll know how to take tips and trends and leave the negativity behind.
Of the reasons to stop idolizing fashion magazines, the incessant sales pitch is something we’re especially targeted by on every single page. From the newest beauty products to the hottest designer wares, magazines are constantly selling us something. While it’s wonderful to make wish lists, constantly blowing the budget to follow the advice of a fashion magazine is financial sabotage.
If your body is measured at anything more that 110 pounds and anything less than 5’10” tall, there’s a strong chance that your silhouette isn’t represented within your favorite fashion magazines. And if you have an athletic build, a petite frame or a curvaceous body, seeing thin bodies in fashions sized to a thin ideal can feel rather exclusionary. And here’s some food for thought: some studies even suggest that there’s a statistical link between the influence of fashion magazines and the prevalence of eating disorders.
Women have laugh lines, wrinkles, dimples, freckles and even the occasional breakout, but you would never know that from the smooth as silk skin in which the women of fashion magazines are digitally bestowed. Until we everyday girls have a team of professional makeup artists, photographers and Photoshop masterminds following our every move, we’ll never look as perfected as the models of fashion magazines seem to appear.
Being told what to wear is effectually limiting how you choose to visually present yourself. Of course, you can examine the trends and the seasonal lines of your favorite designers for inspiration, but your style should reflect who YOU are, not who you’re told to be. If you don’t feel comfortable in what you’re wearing, no matter how hot the trend may be, your discomfort will be palpable. You pick the clothes and wear them. Don’t let the magazines have the clothes wearing you.
From the fashion spread models to the presumed skin tone of the beauty products being reviewed, Caucasian women are represented as the marketable common denominator. African American women, Asian women and Latina women are consistently under-represented in fashion magazines, much to the disappointment of young girls looking for models, celebrity covers and beauty tips that can embody their own racial identity and ethnic heritage.
Believe me. I know my washed and worn yoga pants or bunny slippers don’t belong on the pages of any magazine. And while it’s lovely to own so many embellished and beautifully structured outfits with shoes and bags to match, one must wonder if the moguls of the fashion industry think we never take some time away from the catwalk. If you’re cleaning the house or cozying up on the couch with a good book, are you dressed for a night out on the town? God, I hope not. Forget the fashion rules and go for unapologetic comfort.
Taking cues from the stylists, beauticians and fashion experts of your favorite magazines is not a crime. I often find myself flipping through fashion magazines, admiring the craftsmanship and creativity of a designer’s line that speaks to me. But if the exorbitant price tag or the limited sizes of the latest fashions only evoke feelings of inadequacy or depression, it might be time to shelve the magazines for a while.
By all means, subscribe to the magazines that you enjoy for their content, but don’t subscribe to a notion that makes you feel anything less than beautiful. Magazines sell ideas just as they do products, and if those ideas include body exclusion, unrepresented racial diversity or the claims of some unattainable perfection, it’s time to cancel your subscription and start your own personal guide to style. Do you follow the trends in magazines or can you take them or leave them?
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