Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Cosmopolitan Cover Uncovered

Occasionally I notice magazine covers as I’m going through the checkout lanes at the grocery store. Most of the time I’m too focused on getting through the checkout to care what’s around me.

On Monday I ran into Walmart to grab a few things on my way home from work and noticed the Cosmopolitan magazine cover. How can you not? The gal on the cover has her “shirt” cut  half way down to her navel. Whatever, she’s Photoshopped.

Now, before we get to the magazine cover I have a bone to pick with society. I’m one of THOSE women/moms. I have an issue with magazine covers that show barely clad women.

  1. Women have body image issues and these kinds of covers do NOT help.
  2. Women STILL buy these magazines even though they have body image issues.
  3. Society has decided this is what’s beautiful.
  4. Society then, out of the other side of our mouths, tells us to love ourselves just as we are, not to compare ourselves to the photoshopped women on and in magazines.
  5. Men are given these images as a “standard” in which to judge a woman’s beauty.
  6. Men are visual and to see these images time and time again sets them up for an expectation few women can attain.
  7. Young girls are exposed to this crap at an early age and start comparing themselves against images that aren’t even real, but they don’t realize that. Can anyone say anorexia & bulimia?
  8. Young boys see these images and they begin to form in their minds what women “should” look like.cosmo Cover 1

If you think I’m lying, check this out. Do you see how low this is set? My 7yo son’s eye level isn’t much higher than this. Why in the WORLD is this not up higher? Look, right there down where little boys and girls stoop to grab a ring candy.Cosmo CoverAnd what’s with those stupid “shields” that are covering absolutely NOTHING. Oh, sure there might be the word “sex”, “naked”, “nude”, but what flipping good does that do when this girl is barely dressed and her breasts are hanging halfway out? Children look over and how can they NOT see this gal and be drawn immediately to her breasts?

I think if this cover was up higher or covered horizontally I wouldn’t have had such a negative reaction. And yes, I’m the lady that complains to the manager that I find this offensive to women and destructive to my sons. I think as a society we need to stop talking out of both sides of our mouths.

Did/do you compare yourself to magazine covers? If so, did it encourage you or did you see all your “flaws” in comparison to the cover model’s mocked up beauty. How many of you knew in your formative years that these covers were airbrushed, digitally enhanced, etc? Does this kind of thing bother anyone else but me?


Mimi said...

Yeah, they bother me too & this week the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit edition is coming out, the worst of all!


Unknown said...

Exactly!!!!!!! This is right up my alley! I just did a post today similiar to this!!

Joy Tamsin David said...

Our store has larger shields for the Cosmo magazines. All we can see is the title. What good does a cut out shield do?

Jamie said...

I watch Glee and I thought Lea Michelle looked amazing on that cover. I realized a long time ago that I'm never going to look like a cosmo cover girl. Unless they do an issue on the average woman (with saggy boobs and stretch marks from babies).

Admittedly, I think Lea did look beautiful and I don't think there's anything wrong with Cosmo deciding that. Just becuase I think Lea is beautiful doesn't mean that 1) I think that's the only thing that's beautiful 2) that my husband would rather look at Lea Michelle 3) that my three daughters pay any attention to Cosmo and 4) that we don't have conversations about why representations of women on t.v. and magazines aren't really real.

Mimi N said...

Jamie, I definitely think she's beautiful. I don't think there's anything wrong with them putting her on the cover and saying she's beautiful. My problem is the location of the magazine and the pointlessness of the "shield" that did absolultely nothing.

I have girls and when they were adolescents I discussed this type of thing with them. My boys, mostly my 11yo is absolutely noticing these magazine covers now. That's why I am concerned. Now I will have discussions with my son as well.

Like I said, I would've preferred that the magazine be higher for an adult's view instead of my child's.

Thanks, Mimi

Lucie said...

Hello Mimi,

I haven't been to your blog in a long time and have missed reading your posts :-(

Anyways, I absolutely agree with you! I don't appreciate those magazines being at eye level with my 11 year old son either.

I haven't seen those cut out shields, and good for them that the words are not showing but seriously...partial nudity at eye level with children is disgusting!

Yes, the woman on the cover is beautiful, but she doesn't need to be exposed to make her beautiful! They should really place these types of magazines on a much higher level for adults. It gives our sons an eye-full they don't need.

Don't even get me started on the so-called Swimsuit Edition of Sports Illustrated! Most of them are not even wearing swimsuits anymore!

Great topic by the way! If more people voiced their concerns maybe there would be fewer of these issues.

Ascending Butterfly said...

I totally agree with you about the location of the magazines, they should be up higher. We have newstands on practically every corner here and I would prefer certain magazines up much higher also. You'll sometimes see parents paying for a purchase, and young ones in strollers pointing at boobs! lol :)

As for society's standards of beauty? It's the reason why we have tons of young girls who battle bulimia. We should embrace beauty in all it's forms....if art appreciation classes, and art in general were still a strong part of public school educations, it would certainly help! :-)

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