Beauty standards are forever changing. In the medieval times, people wanted to be pale and overweight as it reflected that you did not have to be outside doing manual labor. In the 1950’s the hourglass figure was every female's ideal body type, courtesy of Marilyn Monroe. Today we are realizing that our obsessions with being the skinniest girl in the room has lead to an era of dangerous body images and poor mental health which brings us to what I believe is the future of beautiful; strong.
Body positivity is a huge trend right now, there is no “perfect” body because every body is perfect. However, with cities like London which is hitting some of its peak obesity rates, the idea of every body is a perfect one might complicate things. By 2020 it is predicted that half of London’s population will be obese.
It is hypocritical to tell somebody who is overweight that their body is perfect yet know that their health is suffering. The solution to this issue can be found in the beauty norms of the near future which will encourage people to be in shape.
With obesity and suicide numbers on the rise, it is time that we consider healthy as beautiful.
Heathy may not mean that your body looks like a supermodels that being said, healthy means fit and fit means strong. The female image of strength is portrayed by olympic athletes (think Simone Biles and Lindsey Vonn), modern day superheroes (think Katniss), and the everyday woman who works a 9-5 but still has time to go to soulcycle and prepare instagram worthy meals that feature avocado toast.
While this image does still constitute as being on the skinnier side, strong means muscle too. It is acceptable and even applauded for a woman to have arm definition and a six pack. You lift more than the guy you’re seeing? That’s badass. You do crossfit? That’s badass. You work your ass off and sweat? That’s badass.
Luckily, fashion also seems to have caught on to this trend. Fitbit and other personal activity trackers are all the rage of late with everybody trying to outstep their friends and themselves. These trackers usually come in the form of a wristband that has multiple color options which you can interchange to match your outfits.
Companies such as Nike and Athos have started manufacturing clothes with fitness trackers built into them. The tracker connects to an app on your phone so your every movement can be tracked by the clothes pressed to your body or the shoes on your feet.
This new wave of athletic fashion/athleisure will hopefully popularize the trend of strong being beautiful. The way we view beauty should influence the way we as humans act so if strong and healthy are “in” then maybe that means we can push obesity out.