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The Power of Image

            Image, a word defined as the physical or mental representation of a person. Personal and outward image affect how you perceive yourself and others as well as how others perceive you, resulting in consequences both positive and negative. Everyone, from celebrities to your next door neighbour suffer from the ramifications and reap the benefits of society's focus on appearance. Studies have even shown that physical appearance significantly impacts the development of social relations (NCBI, 2014). Though one could wonder, what are some of the exact consequences of the image? .
             For instance, earlier this year Caitlyn Jenner, a trans icon and reality television star, went public regarding her identity as a transgender woman through the fashionable pop culture and current affairs magazine Vanity Fair. While she was met with astounding amounts of positivity and acceptance from the public and those close to her, a large amount of the publicity was directed towards her newfound feminine beauty. The majority of pundits attempted to voice their support for her by complimenting her appearance with terms such as 'beautiful' and 'hot' (Mirror, 03/06/15), as well as comparing her to other female Jenner-Kardashian family members. Although the statements were positively in favor of her transition, it was undeniable that when her outward image underwent the metamorphosis from Bruce to Caitlyn it was suddenly her physical allure that was to be focused on, rather than the fact that she was an Olympic gold medalist business-woman who was brave enough to be utterly open about herself.
             However, as mentioned earlier, the impact of image isn't merely negative, as positive outcomes due to semblance occur frequently. One of the many examples is Julia Roberts, who used her clean-cut star power to her advantage in order to raise awareness for the rare genetic neurological disorder of the grey matter in the brain, Retts syndrome (WebMD, 09/05/02).

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