HomeBeautyMuffin Tops to Arm Vaginas and the Impossible Beauty Standards Women Are...
Muffin Tops to Arm Vaginas and the Impossible Beauty Standards Women Are Expected to Live by
Dec 1, 2017
It has become culturally acceptable for women to shame their bodies. There have been so many weird body fads and “challenges” that seem to be created, making women more self-conscious of their bodies. Muffin tops, high gaps, the collarbone challenge, bikini bridges, and more are all setting women up to do dangerous things to achieve impossible beauty standards. The newest addition in this set of continuing trends is the arm (or armpit) vagina.
Imperfect Parts. Naming our imperfect parts has been a strange and normalizing way of tearing ourselves down. First there were saddle-bags, next came the cankle. Soon after we entered the age of the muffin top. And from there things started to get weirder and more specific.
Something Everyone Has. Arm vagina is a phrase to describe the section of skin where the arm joins the torso. It’s something that is completely natural and everyone has, regardless of size or body type.
Compliment. The first time the phrase was heard to describe this bit of skin was in 2014. Jennifer Lawrence was being interviewed on the SAG Awards Red Carpet. Giuliana Rancic complimented the actress’ dress when she responded, “I know I have armpit fat, it's OK... it's armpit vaginas.”
Self-Deprecating. There’s a lot that can be unpacked about this response. JLaw has long been celebrated for her self-deprecating humor. But this specific attitude where women dodge compliments by putting themselves down needs to stop. It’s normalizing fat shaming and tells other women (especially ones who weigh more than you) that the way they look is worse than how you see yourself.
Wildfire. Giuliana immediately expressed that she was now worried she had armpit vaginas herself. Body insecurities that are spoken aloud spread like wildfire to others. It’s almost an involuntary reaction to put yourself down after another woman does first.
Fear. The fear of the “arm vagina” has recently reemerged and many A-list celebrities are expressing concern. Hollywood stylist, Rebecca Corbin-Murray, works with actresses who range between sizes 6 and 14.
Weary. In an interview with the Times, Rebecca explained that many of her clients have become weary of it. “Sometimes it’s the weirdest part of their body [they're concerned about]. They say, ‘I’ve got this horrible blah-blah’, and you think, ‘What are they even talking about?’ The one that comes up all the time is arm vagina.”
Superhuman. Celebrities unfortunately do not have as much control over their bodies. They experience unbelievable amounts of pressure to be “superhuman”.
Perfection. Celebrities have so many people telling them what needs to be fixed, nipped, and tucked. They’re expected to be perfect beings that are tight and trimmed, cellulite free, and hairless. Now they’re expected to have completely fat-free underarms.
Tabloids. The body shaming that occurs in Hollywood is a standard that has unfortunately come to be expected. Many tabloids print cover stories if a celeb has gained even a pound or shows any sign of aging.
Standards. Celebrities’ appearances become the face of how every woman is supposed to look. These unattainable beauty standards end up affecting women everywhere.
Effects on Teens. Teens are known to be the most affected. Developing self-esteem is affected causing depression and sometimes even eating disorders.
Eating Disorders. Up to 4.2% of women have suffered from Anorexia Nervosa in their lifetime and has the highest fatality rate of any mental illness. Up to 4% of women have suffered from Bulimia Nervosa.
Reclaim. Armpits have been in the spotlight for a little while. Many women have been growing out their armpit hair, sometimes even coloring it bright colors, to reclaim their bodies from the soul crushing beauty standards we are expected to keep up with.
Body Positivity. Women need to continue reclaiming their bodies and worry about beauty standards less. Body positivity and loving yourself requires a lot of hard work but it’s worth it in the end.