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When the fashion industry declares a look and body type to be the standard of beauty they disenfranchise over 99% of the population. Effectively what the fashion industry present as beautiful then trickles through many other aspects of life for women. Women and girls get the message from fashion, advertising and society that they are not beautiful unless they look a very specific way. This is a hugely destructive message to send out and it has almost never ending bad effects on people’s lives.

1. Wrong Focus

Fashion should be about two things; looking your best and expressing your individuality. We all know that we look better when we make some effort and express some style through our clothes. However to distort fashion to mean that unless you have the body type of today’s catwalks, whatever that happens to be, you are not beautiful and have no hope of being so is very destructive.

2. Ever-Changing Ideals

The ideal body type changes over time. Sometimes the fashion world prefers the very slender, tall frame, sometimes hourglass and sometimes fit and lean. The fashion changes, the models change but the women and girls of the world cannot alter their genetics every few years to meet the changing beauty standards.

3. Standards Out of Thin Air 

Beauty cannot be defined as height, weight and other measurements. If this was true then the only people who would ever feel attraction or fall in love would match the ideal body types and beauty standards of the day. Sadly many women, girls and increasingly men as well feel like they are not attractive to anyone and never can be because the fashion world says so.

4. Frustration Turns Low Confidence

This message that you are unattractive and have no beauty to offer the world is frustrating. It causes low confidence, an avoidance of socializing and forming romantic relationships and even depression. Just the unhappiness this phenomenon causes in people is worrying enough but then there are those who go on to have major surgery to change things about themselves that many people would find beautiful.

5. Bullied on Appearance

Bullying based on appearance is a huge social problem. The reason bullies wield so much power in this situation is that so many people are insecure about the way they look. One person will be teased for being short, another for being tall, a medium height person might get bullied because of their weight or face shape. This type of bullying behavior puts people under stress and undermines their motivation to strive for what they want in life.

Sad Girl

6. Limited Audience is Limited Business

Aside from all the possible ways the fashion industry can be harmful, it may be harming itself.  Economically speaking, wouldn’t you think they want to promote their new line to largest possible audience as possible?  When the top models are no where near the average measurements, it is extremely difficult for us to image how well that particular dress will fit on us just by looking at a runway pictures. The fashion industry can do better if everybody knew exactly what they were buying. One way to achieve this is by social fashion shopping.


Beauty cannot be defined by the fashion industry or related advertising. We all know this is true from our own perceptions of beauty. We see people every day that we find beautiful or charming or kind and that affects how attractive you see that person as being. People need to realize that this real beauty that we all see and appreciate in each other every day needs to be something we accept that others see in us. Beauty is not about measurements such as height, weight or dress size. Beauty is something much more than that and should be appreciated and enjoyed by everyone on a daily basis. We, at 21Squared, want to remind you that no matter what anyone says, you are beautiful and must embrace who you are.  Confidence is the key to true beauty, and it can help others to feel confident, too!

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