Psychology of Image: Body Inclusivity Trends in American Society

While overall body health and wellness topics are important, the specifics of body aesthetics -- especially as they pertain to body inclusivity -- are in a state of flux across American society, a population that’s been dramatically shedding its body exclusivity past over the last decade.

I’ve traced some of the changing aesthetics in terms of body exclusivity trends to the late 1970s and early 1980s where the once-dominant Victoria’s Secret lingerie and fashion brand underscored the then-standard for female body beauty: primarily caucasian with ultra long legs and slender frames.

Since those bedazzled, over-sexualized, and angel-winged Victoria’s Secret days, the climate for body aesthetics has undergone a visual rebellion so to speak, celebrating a wide range of female body sizes, colors, states, and shapes. Even as recently as May 2020, the latest visuals for niche body groups is the 50+ aged female body, as diversely demonstrated by the Knix lingerie brand (see slide 28).

I hope you enjoy exploring this important visual subject.

Mayra Ruiz-McPherson, MA, MFA
Media Psychologist • Experience/Creative/Digital Strategist • Tech Ethicist1-pager:
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