Study finds women are still feeling pressure to look a certain way, despite body ideals changing

We’ve shifted away from waif-like Kate Moss body idols to celebrate those with curvier Kardashians-inspired booty and bust, but it seems women are still feeling pressured to look a certain way.

According to a recent study, experts looked into how changing beauty ideals are impacting women to feel about the way they look.

They found that while an hour-glass figure is taking centre-stage woman are still struggling with their body types.


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A post shared by Kim Kardashian (@kimkardashian)

Women still feel pressured to look a certain way, a new study finds

Researchers at York University in Toronto, Canada, showed female participants three photographs with different body types.

They were categorised as ‘slim-thick’, ‘thin’ and ‘fit’.


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A post shared by Kate Moss Agency (@katemossagency)

‘Slim thick’ is an hour-glass figure with a bigger booty, bust and small waist as well as flat stomach.

‘Thin’ was of a picture of someone with a flat stomach and small waist, while ‘fit’ was a more athletic physique.

The participants were asked to compare themselves to the photos and share their feelings on how these body types made them feel.

It turns out, all three body types made the volunteers to feel insecure about their own weight, appearance and overall body type.

The fuller hour-glass figure ideal is making women feel more self-conscious


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A post shared by Khloé Kardashian (@khloekardashian)

In fact, women felt more dissatisfaction towards their weight and appearance when compared to ‘slim-thick’ women in the photographs.

A.k.a. the shift towards a fuller, hour-glass figure is making women more self-conscious.

Women still find this current body ideal unattainable, especially if celebrities have undergone plastic surgery.


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A post shared by Khloé Kardashian (@khloekardashian)

“Cultural trends in Western media have recently shifted towards a curvier body type,” wrote Sarah McComb and Jennifer Mills, the two researchers conducting the study. 

“Heavier models may actually be the most harmful type of body-ideal to women’s body image based on the current findings.” 

“We’re currently investigating if more women aspire to this ideal because they think it may be easier to attain than the thin ideal, which makes them feel disappointed when it’s more difficult to achieve than they initially expected.” 

We think women are beautiful whatever their size and shape, and all bodies should be celebrated, wether they are big or small!

Hopefully, from now on women feel less pressure to look a certain way and focus more on their health and being their best self.

Ignore the body image pressure

The body image pressure put on women is incredible. Every day we are hit with media and social media images of the so called ‘perfect look’.

We see fitness programs, celeb trainers and celebrities with weight loss programs promising that you can get their six-pack look in a matter of weeks – when we should be focusing on being healthy and giving ourselves a high five on juggling motherhood!

We also have peer pressure to look a certain way – which compounds the already DEAFENING noise around us to look a certain way.1604_THM_BA_SM_APRILmemes6 (1)

Mums and body image

This is an issue we’re passionate about at The Healthy Mummy. Our bodies after having babies are different – they may have stretch marks and mummy tummy, but they have carried our children.

It IS possible to be fit and healthy in a body that doesn’t look like a supermodel’s.

If you need some more inspiration, have a look at Healthy Mummy Rae Willingham’s inspirational video on loving your body:

It’s never to late to start  – if you want to get fit and healthy right now then join our 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge that is designed especially for mums.


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