When it comes to looking good, males are just as pressured as female to conform to the ideals society promotes. But what exactly are those standards worldwide, and how have popular culture and media shaped our views on ideal male beauty?
In order to answer these questions, Buzzfeed asked for insight from populations in 12 countries around the world: the United States, Mexico, Brazil, South Africa, Nigeria, Turkey, Italy, the U.K., India, South Korea, the Philippines, and Australia.
What they came up with is creatively depicted in the video below. And although it features 12 gorgeous male models, the message which underlies the statistics, lighting, and visual effects is disturbing.
While women continue to report higher numbers in regards to negative body image, the percentage of men admitting to body dissatisfaction is, shockingly, growing at a much faster rate.
The concern of attaining the ‘perfect body image’ is in no small part due to mass media, entertainment, and advertising. And now men everywhere – including young boys – are feeling the pressure to ‘be better’, causing the male market to skyrocket as more and more men reach for products to seem more visually appealing:
According to a CNBC, between 2012 and 2014, the number of men’s beauty products increased by more than 70% worldwide. And as of 2013, the industry of men’s skin care alone was worth more than $3.3 billion dollars.
The video and its accompanying study aim to put contemporary “ideal” male specimens under scrutiny, front and center, as physical representations of a massive survey, both theoretical and empirical in nature.
By inspiring a vast array of controversial discussions on how we judge others (both men and women) based on their looks – and how negative such ideals may be to the masses – hopefully an important dialogue regarding mens’ relationships with their bodies, ethnicity, masculinity, and personal expression of beauty will be ignited.
What are you thoughts on the video, and how we – as a collective – might reduce the amount of pressure both men and women feel to achieve a certain standard of beauty? Share in the comments sections below.