Picture your dream girl or guy. Most likely he’s tall, deep voiced, well-built, and toned, and she is tan long-legged, thin, bombshelled with a rear to boot; but how many people out there actually fit those images. Not too many, right? If that’s the kind of person people want, what are the rest of us short, chubby, flat chested, small muscled people supposed to do. Start hitting the gym every day? Pay thousands upon thousands of dollar for surgery? Cry ourselves to sleep because our body isn’t good enough? Well that used to be what many people did, until recently that is. More and more people have been supporting body ownage and love your body movements.
One of the earlier and leading supporters is Dove. Based on the book, Understanding Media and Culture: An Introduction to Mass Communication, a tastemaker is a person or organization that “helps to shape what we care about,” and sometimes businesses will become a tastemaker to make them more appealing to the public. Dove is one of these business. They continually make commercials featuring normal looking women being made to feel comfortable and proud of their skin, their body. This seems like they are helping a great cause and maybe that is the reasoning behind it, but one could argue that they do it to make their company and soap products more desirable because consumers would be buying from a generous business. One of the newer trending movements is #selflove, which features pictures and stories of both men and women loving their bodies for every curve, every scar, every stretch mark of them. Organizations like Dove may have started these boost your self-esteem movements, but it is pop culture and the use of social networking that made it as big as it is today. Tumblr users spread the Dove commercials all over, inspiring Twitter and Instagram users to start tags like #selflove and get that trending. Pop culture has been playing a major role in spreading a fantastic cause.
The body ownage movement goes beyond the hashtags and is being spread through YouTube as well as everyday media like magazines and music. There is a channel on YouTube called BuzzFeed where many videos have been dedicated to a group of 4 or 5 guys putting themselves through many beautifying processes that women take to look ideal. Their comments after the videos tend to focus on how silly and ridiculous some of it is, the respect that they gain for women willing to do the activities regularly, and how wrong they think it is that some women feel they must do those things to be beautiful. They even did a mock photo shoot of the famous “break the internet” picture of Kim Kardashian. The image had been spreading like wildfire through social media and trended for a while. They praise her being willing and able to allow herself to be that vulnerable for basically the entire world. They also talked about how the photos she released also helped the cause of loving the body you have and not being afraid to own it.
The last part of pop culture that helps with the body ownage, #selflove type movements is our music. Specifically songs like Meghan Trainor’s “All About That Bass”, whether intended or not, it passes along the same message of loving your body even if you are more on the curvy side. She even makes sure to add a line, so that people won’t feel ashamed of being skinny and lacking a “bass”, which is “Go ahead just tell them skinny bitches that, no, I’m just playin.” The idea of loving your body for the way it is, is spreading throughout all forms of social media and has become part of our pop culture and may, even, someday become part of our normal everyday culture.