What is the perfect body shape for a woman? I am sure you have considered it at least once. You are reading a blog that talks about Boudoir Photography and confidence. The perfect body shape is of course something you have an idea about. If you ask Faby, she will show a couple of photos of women she defines “perfect”. But is there a perfect body shape? Moreover, is the perfect body shape something to aspire to?
I wrote this post with my own ideas. You will read the ideas of a man who sees a lot of women’s bodies. I photograph women, and I do it without any sort of judgement. I get to know a lot of women, their confidence, their dreams, their feelings about their own bodies. Let me will shed some light on the perfect body shape, and the reality behind something important.
What is the “perfect body shape”
Various studies exist on the case of the perfect body shape. We know that there are two factors that both men and women underline to define it:
- a low BMI (body mass index)
- a hourglass shape
That’s about it. Someone go deeper in saying that the perfect body shape is also about symmetry, but they are the minority. One interesting fact is that both men and women share the two elements I have underlined.
In general studies agree that the “hourglass shape” is more important than a low BMI. However, this may vary depending on when we ask people. If they are hungry the view on BMI will change.
The experience of a boudoir photographer
We have met and spoke to hundreds of women. What they had in common is they have been brave enough to undress in front of us. We have seen women generally considered having a perfect body shape. But we have also photographed women which were mode “plumpy” or even thinner than the ideal shape. We have learned two things:
- The perfect body shape does not exist. The more women get close to having a shape considered “perfect” the more judgemental of themselves they become. They start seeing minor details as massive issues.
- When you start speaking to them, the perfect body shape has nothing to do with beauty. Beauty is something which has a long lasting effect on the confidence of a woman. Yet, it is not the perfect body shape to give confidence. Women which accept their bodies are highly likely to have a positive attitude. They result more beautiful inside out.
The pressure of media
We have mentioned a couple of times on the pages of this blog that media carries a huge responsibility on women’s lack of confidence. They portray perfect women, depicting perfect lives. Yet reality is far from what the media presents. Magazines sell more if the woman on the cover has the perfect body shape. We are more likely to buy them if the model’s skin is porcelain-looking. Yet this is not the truth. This is a double ended sword, which cuts us every time we brandish it.
We should liberate ourselves from the pressure of media. What they define the “perfect body shape” presented in 3D and visualised with detailed ratio, is not part of real life. Do you think I would love my wife less if her breast to waist ratio was smaller than 0.7?
We have one life
I turned forty this year. I can see my skin beginning to change. It is not any longer the young elastic skin I had in my 20. And yes, I have some curves where before I almost had a six pack. My hair and beard are starting to show some sign of grey. I am not a teenager any longer. Do you know what? I am ok with it. I will work harder to have a healthier lifestyle, but growing old is something I treasure. Too many women have unhealthy expectations, more than unhealthy bodies. The perfect body shape is ephemeral. It last a day, a week or a month, but it won’t follow you or the rest of your life. If you have a breast-to-waist ratio which gives you ample breast, you may have the perfect body shape. Yet, you also have large breast that sooner or later will lose their tone and will start sagging a bit.
This is ok, as long as you cherish your body. So stop looking for the perfect body shape, and start working hard for self love. Don’t be afraid of the sign of time around your eyes. The only people who don’t have them are those whose life is not long as ours.
Live, laugh, love (yourself)