Women In the Media: Portraying the Ideal Woman or an Unrealistic Beauty Queen?.
It's nearly amazing how magazines are the only medium where girls are over-represented. However, almost 70 percent of the editorial content in teen magazines focuses on beauty and fashion, and only 12 percent talks about school or careers. (Phillips 2) There is a an adolescent crisis in confidence that is due to the conflict between the image that a girl has of herself and what society tells her a woman should be like. Young girls are plagued with images of what they should look like even at a very young age, with Barbie dolls being an excellent example. Young girls and teenagers are at the point in their lives when they are most susceptible to influence. As they see Britney Spears, Barbie Dolls, and magazine covers, the girls realize that they want to look and feel like the images placed in their heads. Because girls see that they do not look like their idols, girls tend to feel insecure or attain eating disorders. Common roots for the stereotypical problems women face in our society stem from conventional women's magazines, thus procuring insecurities and eating disorders among young women and teenage girls.
It is a simple task to observe these formulaic problems in teen magazines. An average issue of Seventeen contains about eight to 12 fashion and beauty features, taking up two-thirds of the magazine's editorial content. There is usually one story about a new exercise or fitness regime, one story in which an "average-" looking girl gets a makeover, numerous pages of makeup tricks and techniques, mini-stories on what's new in the fashion world, and the feature fashion spreads, which are usually four to six pages long. Sickly thin women plaster the pages cover to cover that are for the majority, older than many of the young consumers. Girls this age are at the most insecure time of their lives, and even worse, looking for a role model.