A Reflection on Body Image Stereotypes

Kathy Crosby
3 min readFeb 1, 2023
Photo by Anna Tarazevich: https://www.pexels.com/photo/woman-s-hands-measuring-her-waistline-5629206/

Big, beautiful eyes, a pixie haircut, 5’6” tall and stick thin — at the age of 16 Leslie Lawson turned into the world's most famous model of the times and earned her professional name of Twiggy.

Prior to this time, the ideal woman was a size 12. However, their waist size was a full 6 inches smaller than women of today. Voluptuous and womanly was sexy. Marylin Monroe was a size 16. Zsa Zsa Gabor and Sophia Loren were size 10. All were considered to be the most attractive and sexiest women of their time.

With the advent of Twiggy, the entire opinion of what makes a woman desirable changed. Skinny was in, curvy was out. This has gone on for decades long after most young girls have a clue who Twiggy was — being thin is simply what one is supposed to do and how you are supposed to be.

Dieting, drug cocktails, anorexia/bulimia, and low self-esteem have gone on for decades. Women have died to look like the ideal female. As famously stated in the movie, The Devil Wears Prada, “I’m one stomach flu away from my goal weight”.

Karen Carpenter died from heart failure related to her attempts to lose weight. Margaux Hemmingway suffered from bulimia at the time of her death, and now Lisa Marie Presley has passed away from her efforts to look good for an awards ceremony.

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Kathy Crosby

Kathy Crosby is a full time creative, vlogger, entertainer. musical educator and advocate. https://www.phoenixhousepublishing.org