I'm not going to say that social media was our demise (I myself enjoy Facebook too much to make such a brazen statement), but I do think that with the rise of these sites came the sudden commanding impulse to look awesome in photos. After all, we want our 500-plus friends to think we're beautiful.
The body image, air-brushing, magazine-coverage stuff is inevitably hypocritical, boring and small. It's on a loop and it's going nowhere. Reading the mainstream "women's press," you'd think the biggest problem facing us today was the fact that "real" women appear airbrushed in glossies.
Should we not instead be looking to and encouraging parents, teachers, community leaders, clubs and curriculums to stand in the gap and provide the positive role models that the media has failed to produce?
One sunny August afternoon, my younger son and I walked to the post office and mailed out 200 bar mitzvah invitations. We had spent that morning sitting in the dining room, licking envelopes and placing royal blue and red stamps that resembled the Giants logo onto the upper right corners of heavy, cream-colored envelopes.
Exfoliating facials, airbrush makeup, false lashes and more tips for your big day!
It's refreshing to see some things that are so important that we all agree on them: loving our bodies, minds, and selves, and encouraging our sisters and daughters and cousins to love themselves.
"I have a problem with the cover. She looks so young! It's like we're showing favoritism." It was at this point, dear reader, that the whistle was deployed.
What? You didn't get the memo? Ladies, you are supposed to be unnaturally thin -- but with full Cs, a tight butt, and all-over muscle tone. Oh, and guess what? If you somehow manage this Herculean feat, you will still require copious amounts of airbrushing. Reverse airbrushing, that is.
Talk to them -- yes, both girls and boys -- about the enhanced images and videos that they will be exposed to. Tell them that pornography is like false advertising, the goal being to sell and market products, not necessarily to convey truth and honesty.
Shouldn't it be easy to sit back and simply appreciate our bodies for all they are and all they do for us? Not so according to recent studies. A majority of women harbor a negative body image perception.
Here Lauren Hutton was again, in 2011, surrounded by pages of commercially flawless babes. Boldly and knowingly looking into the camera, she demands to be experienced on her own ground.
While magazine editors profess to be on the lookout for more normal models, not very many of them practices what they preach.
Do we see pressure for men to have an "ideal body type" in other ways besides mannequins? Sure. Men are now being subjected to airbrushing in the media to give them the perfect body.
You know it's a weird month in celeb-land when Good Housekeeping cover girl, Michelle Obama, is photoshopped within an inch of her life and Marie Claire cover girl, Jessica Simpson, is not only un-airbrushed, but also sans makeup.
I'll admit it: I'm as susceptible as any woman to the pressure to be perfect. I read magazines. I watch television. And most perilous of all, I live in Los Angeles.