Among the media, we more than often see women in “Body Posi” campaigns as the fore-front for the movement of self love and self worth. But in this age, we’re approaching something thats growing into a detrimental epidemic for the male species. Men are often force fed the idea to be big and strong or ripped and dripping in baby oil from almost every angle. On every magazine cover aimed towards men it’s always a 6 foot man with less than 10% body fat being surrounded by women at about the same level of “Fit” status. Ever see a male underwear campaign with a model who has a little extra back fat? Yeaahhhh, didn’t think so.
Even though the women’s aimed sector of the media has made attempts at tackling body image issues, men’s status of self image is often being overlooked. We NEED to address this. It’s enough for a straight man to feel as though he needs to eat every thing in sight to gain weight and to lift unnecessary amounts of heavy metal, but on the other end of this spectrum some men, especially in the LGBTQ+ community, feel the need to LOSE weight and some even go to the extent of starving themselves to fit an agenda. Don’t get me wrong, there is NO PROBLEM with being healthy and working out for your own self enjoyment and betterment, but when those reasons for getting in the gym and sweating so much that you could fill a small kiddie pool with perspirartion only to fit another persons expectations IS A PROBLEM.
One company in particular who was thought to start this “Body Posi” movement for men was American Eagle Outfitters. Around this time last year they released an #AEReal Campaign video with men of different body types as the models (pictured above). It was an amazing concept and everyone thought, “YES, THIS IS A MEN’S CAMPAIGN WE DESERVE”. Unfortunately and oh so heart-breakingly, it was an April fools joke. This made so many people’s blood boil, why oh why when the world finally gets a men’s body positive campaign…its a joke? And to be fair, what makes it a joke? The fact that they’re men? It’s these ideals that force the male species to not speak out about our body image issues, and to be honest, my lil’ back rolls and myself have had ENOUGH. It’s time to be seen as more than just iron pumping meat eaters boys.
SO, I ask the media: can you guys please shine a light on this issue, it’s time to make men everywhere feel as though we don’t just have to “deal with it”. Saying that us boys aren’t allowed to speak out or care about our body image is almost as dumb as saying we aren’t allowed to cry either.
Taylor and his 23% body fat.