It seems that some men have evolved – or devolved – to lose sight of trying to keep their bodies in shape, instead option for a bit of extra “cushion”.
You might have seen this trend in the past year, with celebrities coming out in celebration of what is being termed as “dadbod”. The term refers to a flabbier, more relaxed view on the physique as exhibited by Seth Rogen and Jason Segal. As long as women are accepting of this, men will continue to embrace it.
The term was coined by a 19 year old college student at Clemson University, Mackenzie Pearson, in an essay where she praised the more natural look as one that exhibits confidence in one’s self and disregard for the perfection so often displayed in popular culture. “He’s someone who knows who he is and loves his body”, explains Pearson.
This is great news for men and likely helped some men with their confidence and self-esteem, but unfortunately culture has not yet come to accept the “mombod” – or the female version of not caring. Women have traditionally been judged harshly regarding their looks and specifically their weight.
In the modeling world there has been some uptick in the amount of acceptance for plus size models, whose body type doesn’t typically conform to what has been made popular by the media and by product marketing. However, this has yet to change the overall perception when it comes to women.
One of the points that Pearson makes in her essay is that the man with the dadbod will actually make girls standing next to him look smaller, and is thus a hit with many ladies. It is argued that there is a thin line between dadbod and just fat, and those stepping to far over that line may find themselves without the legion of fans they once enjoyed.
As for us ladies, we have a couple of options. We can continue to stress about our figure, go on diets, engage in HIIT training, and work our butts off to get a little bit ahead on the road to a great body while our counterparts celebrate their chubbiness; or we can expand the beauty trends across genders and solve self-esteem issues for women everywhere by embracing a bit of flab and being happy with ourselves.