Study Finds Kim Kardashian and Kylie Jenner’s ‘Slim Thick’ Figure Bad for Body Image
According to a new study from researchers at York University in Toronto, the cultural idealization of "slim thick" figures like Kim Kardashian and Kylie Jenner’s is harmful to women’s body image.
The study examined the responses of 402 women between the ages of 18 and 25 who were shown photos of Instagram influencers identified as “slim-thick,” “fit” and “thin.”
Findings revealed the “slim-thick” figure — think Jessica Rabbit: typically, a body with a flat stomach and small waist, with no visible fat except in the breast, hip and buttocks areas — as the ideal body type that causes the most dissatisfaction in women's perceived personal appearance.
The study tapped Kardashian and Jenner as influencers whose “slim thick” body type has resulted in a lack of confidence for women.
Digitally altered and Photoshopped images — which the sisters are regularly called out for — don’t help, “thus making the thin ideal even thinner and less attainable for the average woman.”
The study reports that “appearance perfectionism” can cause mental distress among women, which can lead to unhealthy weight control behaviors, low self-esteem and social anxiety.”
However, even with body positivity/acceptance and size diversity on the rise, the study also indicates that curvy imagery is “not a positive alternative” to the ultra-thin models we've seen in the past.
“Heavier models with a large butt and thighs do not offer a healthier or more realistic body ideal than the ‘fit’ or ‘thin’ ideals, but may actually be the most harmful type of body-ideal to women’s body image based on the current findings," the study adds.