Instant Gratification or 'I want it now' culture

Over the last few weeks I have been watching a series called The Ugly Face of Beauty on Channel 4. It really addressed the issue that surrounds our culture now of cosmetic surgery, and how its availability and submersion within our society has made it a subject that, like it or not, we simply can't ignore.

I do wonder sometimes what my generation's elderly faces and bodies are going to look like after a lifetime of tattoos, piercings, and numerous nips and tucks. Body image is something that surrounds us everywhere we look, on a typical womens' magazine double spread we have one feature about shockingly skinny celebs, and on the facing page a real life story of a teenage girl suffering with anorexia.

The programme focussed on a different procedure each week, from boob jobs, tummy tucks, liposuction and more, and it really highlighted to me how nobody ever seems 100% happy with their body. One key feature of The Ugly Face of Beauty, was when Dr Christian Jessen went into a school, to show the teenagers there the risks and (horrific) images of what it can look like when surgery goes wrong. The overwhelming observation I made was that these teenagers didn't want, at first, to think about the alternatives to surgery, such as a healthy diet and exercise, or wearing a padded bra. They wanted it now. And why should they wait, you might think. If they wanted to save money they could go to many of the cut price clinics abroad, but the horror stories the programme told about this would certainly have put me off, if I had been considering surgery. No money? Doesn't matter. With regular deals and instant credit available, you can sell your soul as well as your body.

In case you can't tell, twenty-first century society's obsession with body image makes my skin crawl. It's taken me to the age of twenty eight to finally accept my body's natural shape, to understand that a healthy diet and exercise is the best way I can ever keep my body in its physical peak, and to stop looking at pictures of size zero celebs and wish that was me. I guess you could say that I've waited this long for an epiphany. Some things are worth waiting for.


  1. I really enjoyed this series. As a clinical negligence lawyer I see the unfortunate results of cosmetic surgery on a daily basis. You hit the nail on the head is the complete inability of a person to accept their body and their own physical well as the media circus that surrounds celebrity that leads to the unfortunate desire to obtain cosmetic surgery. If only everyone could reach this epiphany my work load would be a lot lower! Really enjoyed your post though :)

  2. Thank you! Really enjoy your posts too!:)


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