Fit and Fabulous Over 40


The Perfect Male Body

The Perfect Male Body
January 06
13:21 2017

Each country has its own ideas about body image. Here, we feature pictures from a study that altered the same image according to the cultural standards in Australia, Egypt, the United States, and Russia. The differences are shocking.

Women are pressured to be sexual and supple, thin but curvy. Men, on the other hand, are pressured to be strong, tall, tan, masculine, and in some cases bearded. While women are arguably pressured more than men, both genders experience body image problems.

A recent study conducted by UK pharmacy Superdrug Online Doctors explores what several countries consider to be “ideal.”

We used a New York photographer who volunteered a self-portrait for the study.

To better understand male body image problems, the organization sent that image to graphic designers in 19 countries and asked them to use Photoshop to transform him into the “perfect” man.

Looking at the pictures, Australia doesn’t seem to have exacting standards when it comes to fitness and masculinity. It seem the “average Joe” is good enough. Russians tend to idealize the Thor-esque blond, broad-shouldered man with big biceps. Ideals aren’t just about muscles, though.

The United States image reflects the American media and is the most unrealistic of all the images. He has a stylish, almost feminine haircut and a short beard in addition to chiseled abs and a slim figure. The Egyptian man, on the other hand, has darker skin and a more stocky body with a squarish hairstyle and beard.

“The quest for a perfect body transcends gender,” reads Superdrug’s website. It is “fueled in part by the media and popular culture. Men around the world may feel even more body image-related pressure than women do – pressure to be stronger or slimmer or more masculine. Our goal with this project is to fuel a revolution – to spark real change about body image, to empower people to prioritize health above appearance, and to promote body confidence around the world.”

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