The drive to make women question their bodies, in order to run million-dollar cosmetic empires isn't new, but somehow the techniques being used seem to be becoming more aggressive. From teens following the Kardashian's diet to middle-aged women getting Botox, there seems no end to what women are willing to do, in order to avoid being ridiculed for their own bodies. The trends to attain that perfect body keep on changing but what remains constant are the insecurities in women’s heads. While majority of women face this scrutiny, celebrities across the world have it even worse. But, not all of them give in to the pressure to have a perfect body.
Radhika Apte is one such actor from Bollywood. On several occasions, she has opened up about the prejudice and sexism revolving around women within Bollywood, and outside it. In one of her recent interviews, she talked about enduring scrutiny of her body, during her struggling days. Mentioning her experience, she brought up how she never felt pressurised by it, but angrier.
Radhika Apte on getting Botox
Apte, who will soon be seen in OTT film Forensic, said, “When I was new, I was told to do lots of jobs on my body and face. The first meeting I had, I was told to change my nose. The second meeting I had, I was told to get a b**b job. Then that continued, then I was told to do something to my legs, then something to my jaw, and something to refill somewhere here (points to her cheeks), then botox." Talking about what her reaction was to these comments, Apte added, "Like, it took me 30 years to color my hair. I'm not going to even get an injection. It just put me off. I never felt pressurised by it. In fact, I felt angrier and, in fact, all of that helped me actually love my body even more because I was like I love my body."
One might question the extent to which people get pushed or push themselves in order to get a perfect body. But what is the ultimate criteria of a perfect body? Why is being fair skinned better than being dark skinned? Why is being slim is better than having body fat? Why do you have to look young but old? Why do we appreciate washboard abs over a flabby tummy? Besides, were does one stop? If you have a flat stomach and someone points out that your faces needs some fillers, else you aren't perfect, do we go for it?
Suggested Reading: Stop Asking Women To Hide Their Wrinkles With Botox
The Run for Perfect Body
With numerous trends popping up on our timeline everyday body image becomes a rigid idea and to attain it, the changes required are unending. For the specified perfect body, people indulge in some toxic practices. Checking themselves in the mirror several times a day, pinching body fat, comparing their photographs to others and many more. By constantly inspecting and scrutinising our bodies, we are affirming to ourselves that it’s important to tightly control how we look. It now only damages our self-esteem but sometimes puts us on a path that could have dangerous consequences for our overall health- crash diets for instant weight loss, detoxes, surgeries, and then there are the plethora of mental health issues that find their root in lack of self-love.
Popular media and its hackneyed representation of women especially have a negative impact on young girls and women who feel that if their body doesn’t look a certain way, they are not attractive enough. Social media platforms not only expose young girls to certain unrealistic beauty standards but also propel them internalise these standards and judge other people on their basis.
It’s important to understand that each one of us can be ourselves without giving into the definition beauty that has been fed to us for ages by out society. What is important is to embrace one’s body in every way possible, because trends will come and go; but your body will always stay with you. Be Amazing, not perfect!
The views expressed are the author’s own.