"Barbie" Success - Setting Unrealistic Beauty Standards?

Posted September 20, 2023
Is Barbie setting unrealistic beauty standard

Long after its release, the public is still talking about the film, “Barbie,” and its impact on how women feel they are treated by the public as well as its theme of female empowerment.  Even as the movie continues to enjoy success, there are some doctors who worry about the standards of beauty that are on display in the film.

Barbie Beauty Standards – Are Patients Asking for Realistic Changes?

Barbie Setting Beauty StandardsIn an interview with a popular Hollywood industry magazine, a plastic surgeon from Beverly Hills said he had patients asking to achieve the waist and breasts of Barbie in the first week after the film was released. In addition, there was a patient who “asked about a rib removal to cinch her waist like Barbie. Ribs are there to protect vital organs and people need to understand this should not be done.”

Ever since the Barbie doll was released to the public in the 1950s, Barbie has also been blamed for promoting an unrealistic image when it comes to the body of females. This has not stopped numerous “Barbiecore” followers from spending large amounts of money to try and look like the doll. Plus, the success of the brightly colored movie is providing inspiration to a new generation. However, there are plastic surgeons who have determined that, with her anatomy, Barbie would not be able to stand up.

There is also a fear that younger viewers of the film might miss the strong feminist messages in the movie and instead focus on comparing their appearance to Barbie’s. They might not feel the same way if they play with a Barbie doll but seeing the character on the big screen can lead to the belief that women need to look a certain way thanks to procedures such as breast augmentation or a tummy tuck.

Barbie and Beauty – Worth a Conversation?

While plastic surgeons worry about the physical changes desired by patients, psychologists see the film as a chance to start a conversation with younger viewers. An image will often linger longer in the brain than the dialogue of a movie. Parents should take the opportunity to ask their children what they think of the images and message of the movie. In addition, if a child talks about wanting to look like Barbie, their feelings should not be dismissed. Instead, parents can say they understand and discuss what is attractive in the real world and this includes more than the features of a person.

Barbie Beauty Standards – How to Approach Cosmetic Surgery

Any person who wants to explore the possibility of having cosmetic procedures should make sure they research the services of more than one plastic surgeon. They need to look at “before and after” photos of actual patients treated by the surgeon and have a consultation appointment to discuss the pros and cons of the procedure in question and this includes the final results, any procedure risks, the recovery process, and the actual cost of the treatment.

For patients who want to get a smile like Barbie, they should know that perfectly straight teeth that are shaped like squares, and white all the time is not a natural occurrence. For one reason, a tooth is never a single solid color due to changes in color and translucency that goes from the gums to the edge of the tooth. Plus, teeth are not all the same size, and this means they have various proportions and sizes in the mouth. One of the most popular methods for trying to gain a smile like Barbie is the placement of veneers on the teeth. Dental veneers are thin shells that are made of resin or porcelain and they are placed over the teeth of the patient to improve their aesthetic appearance. They are used to cover discolored teeth, chipped teeth, and teeth that are stained by food and beverage. Veneers can also alter the shape or size of the teeth which can be helpful when trying to get a smile like Barbie.

Rhinoplasty is also a popular request from those who want to look like Barbie. A nose job can alter the shape, size, or look of the nose but this might not be ideal for patients wanting a “Barbie nose.” The nose of the character has been described as being too concave as well as having a tip that is turned up and overly pointed. If a patient had this type of nose, they would likely experience a bleeding nose and issues with their sinuses. This choice of nose would not have a natural look and might even lead to issues with breathing.

Finally, patients need to know which cosmetic procedures make permanent changes and which treatments provide results that last anywhere from months to years. A person will be impacted by the aging process so it is best to make subtle changes over time as well as changes that work in harmony with the natural features of the body and the anatomy of the person.

- MA


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