How the Media is Fuelling Mens Body Insecurities

Women are not the only ones worried about the way they look, since men are just as susceptible to the images they see in the media. It seems that women are exposed to images of female celebrities who are extremely skinny, youthful-looking, with no visible flaws which often makes them feel insecure about their own bodies, and thus they constantly strive to achieve a perfection which doesn’t really exist. Similarly, men frequently view images of high-profile men who are tall and lean, muscular, and well-groomed, which can make them examine their own bodies and influence how they feel towards themselves.

Perhaps there wasn’t as much pressure on men to take care of their appearance as there is today, since in the past the onus was on women to look good whereas men could get away with just being charming! Nowadays, though, since the invention of the ‘metrosexual’ man, there is a certain expectation that men will make more of an effort to look their best. This is certainly good news for the beauty industry, since its representatives have been able to tap into a whole new market, producing a range of products specifically designed for men.

There are now various creams and lotions, gels and oils that men can apply to their face or various places of their body, as well as hair styling products, and traditionally male products such as aftershave that are all supposed to enhance a man’s appeal. Men are sold the idea that if they take care of themselves they can be as successful in their lives, careers, and relationships as the good-looking, well-groomed men in the ads that fill the pages of men’s magazines. Men also see successful, attractive men on their television screens and, of course, want to emulate their look. They might not have the time or the inclination to work on their six pack, as the celebrity on-screen has, but at least they can buy the same products as he claims to use.

The media clearly fuels men’s body insecurities, as this is the best way to get people to spend money, since they feel bad about the way they look, and thus will look for a way to enhance their appearance and make them feel better. When men are under a constant barrage of images that suggest the ideal masculine physique is lean and muscular, men feel the pressure to look this way, and when famous men look so young and beautiful, then ordinary men also want to.

Many men are therefore prepared to spend a great deal of time working on their bodies and to spend money on products that are designed to make them look good just because they feel insecure with the way they look, something which the media seems keen to encourage.