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Body Image





Breast, Face, or Booty?
What’s More Important—What You Carry, or How You Carry It?
Author: Angie Martínez, Cristal Juárez





What is body image? Body image is your physical 
appearance. It is the way you look, the color of your 
hair, your weight, the clothes you wear, etc., 
including what you think about yourself. A standard of 
beauty is presented in media, magazines, stores, and 
everywhere you go. But does the media really know what 
they are creating in people’s lives? 

Women and girls are consistently taught from an early 
age that their self worth is largely dependent on how 
they look. Body image dissatisfaction is more 
prevalent among females than males. The media reflects 
images of thinness and links this image to other 
symbols of prestige, happiness, love, and success. 
Dissatisfaction can lead to anorexia, bulimia and 
other eating disorders that can cause deaths, but, 
unfortunately, the media will continue to idolize 
ultra thin actresses and models. 

Body image is a very big problem in teenagers’ lives, 
as we found out when we talked to several of them. One 
Watsonville girl said she would not go out with a guy 
with a hairy chest. Another girl from Aptos High told 
us that it is more important to have a guy with a good 
personality than a good body. A guy from Salinas said 
that he only wants a girl with big boobs and a big 
butt. Do you agree with these people? Do you think 
body image plays too big of a role in teenagers’ 
lives? 

One web site on body image reports that “weight and 
shape concerns commonly develop in late childhood and 
through puberty, before the typical age for the 
development of eating disorders, and that the origins 
are multifactor, comprising biological factors 
(genetics, puberty and obesity); family factors 
(attitudes, beliefs and functioning), and 
sociocultural factors (such as social class, ethnicity 
and media and peer influences).” 

Our names are Angie Martínez and Cristal Juárez, and 
we wanted to find out what local people think about 
body image. We went out in the street and interviewed 
teenagers from different schools and different walks 
of life. We expected people to be very superficial, 
but we found something else. 

“I am happy with the way I am,” said Jose, 18, a 
Cabrillo College student, but he also says he prefers 
a girl with big breasts and a big butt. 

“They are not self-satisfied,” said Rosalynd Martinez, 
15, Aptos High student. She thinks girls go bulimic 
because they’re worried about what people will think 
about them. She believes that it’s better to care 
about what’s on the inside rather than the outside. 

“My perfect guy is tall, blondish/brown hair, 
blue/green eyes, dark skin,” said Jennifer Castro, 16, 
a student at Watsonville High School, but she said 
that personally she would change her nose. “I think 
girls change their body because they want to be 
noticed, they want attention, and they want to feel 
better about themselves,” she continued.

From the interviews that we did, we concluded that 
some people care only about physical appearance, while 
other people think that what’s on the inside is more 
important than the outside. We believe that sometimes 
it is important how a person may look, but we still 
think that we shouldn’t focus on the outside, and just 
work at being better people. Yet style plays a big 
role in teenager’s life, because there are always 
people who criticize others because of the way they 
look. 

Many people decide to change their physical appearance 
because they don’t feel good about themselves; others 
decide to change because people criticize them. People 
that decide to change sometimes try to look like the 
models they see in the media, but it all depends how 
far they go. How far will you go?