We all have that pressure to be perfect stemming anywhere from the media to our parents. It’s something that follows us from the playground in preschool to pre-games in college. However, we each get to a point where our ideas of perfection take a different path. Some find it in straight “A”s, others find it in just staying afloat. Some find it in that yoga-esque body, where as others find it in a hearty meal, and taking the flight of stairs once in awhile. However, no matter where our notion of beauty lies, it is safe to say that the majority of us realize that the idea of perfection can't be taken too seriously. Once in a while, though, there is that one in a million girl who does….
Taking perfection as reality, 21 year old Russian model Valeria Lukyanova took the phrase,“I’m a Barbie girl in a Barbie world “ a bit too literally. Undergoing plastic surgery to mirror Mattel’s very own plastic Barbie doll, Valeria now resembles plastic, reflecting much more the appearance of a wax figurine than a real human woman.
With large, glassy blue eyes, a surgically small waist, huge breasts, and straight blonde hair that defies humidity, Valeria currently considers herself, “the most famous Russian woman on the Russian-language Internet.” So, this brings up the question, what defines our standards of beauty? Research shows that if Barbie really were a real woman, her dimensions would be as follows:
Height: 5’ 9”
Shoes Size: 3
It is humanly impossible to have a size three shoe and thirty-nine inch boobs. But, somehow, Valeria thinks that it is. Valeria’s skewed view of the world raises questions on the influence that the infamous Barbie has.
Creating a fantasyland with her as a child is one thing, but using her as a role model is quite different. “I don’t understand girls that think that’s attractive,” UIowa freshman Erin Halstead said. “We were made to have curves.”
The appearance of beauty is different nationwide and internationally. In almost every other country but the United States, girls value plumpness over skinniness. Why then does Barbie represent the unattainable? Because, she is. She is a doll. Yet, with the miscommunication of the media and women like Valeria running around, girls are growing up thinking that they should strive for Barbie’s unnatural appearance.
But, Barbie isn’t real. She doesn’t go to college, or stress over finals, or flirt with boys. She remains in a box with a smile forever stuck to her face, unable to make mistakes and sweat a little.
Sadly, though, Valeria sees just the opposite. Striving for a Barbie bod, she now is Tyra Banks in Lifesize, except Valeria’s transformation is irreversible.
With a top-heavy chest, unable to run, Valeria sends an unhealthy message to women everywhere and is up to those receiving the message to understand what is real and what is not. The old Valeria Lukyanova was real, the new one, regrettably, is not. So, keep it mind while formals are coming up and the summer’s invitation to the beach is surely in the mail, that no matter how hard we want to strive for the rockin’ bronze glow of a supermodel or that flawlessness of Mattel’s PLASTIC Barbie doll, that in the end, if we really did achieve it, we’d each look like this…