I recently saw a blog promoting a product called Dove® Clear Tone™, which promises to renew and even out the skin under your arms. Unfortunately for Dove and the people trying to promote it, I am a busy, active 20-something with a brain and a life and a job, and thus, I have too much on my plate to feel even the slightest bit insecure about the appearance of my armpits. But companies and advertisers do this all the time–they bank on insecurities about areas of the body that we, as female-identified humans, would otherwise never worry about to sell you stuff you really don’t need.
In fact, companies and advertisers have made a killing exploiting (and creating) insecurities about areas of the female body that, truthfully, for the vast majority of women, do not matter in the slightest to our daily lives, to our careers, or to our relationships. When has an armpit rash ever cost me a promotion? Never. Never is when. Maybe if I was a model for yoga apparel. But I am not. By manufacturing body parts for women to be insecure about (hey, what else can we exploit? Oh, armpits? Smart move!), they can suddenly make things like expensive beauty products and articles of clothing seem like necessities.
Which is not to say that I don’t like cosmetics, or that I think that women who use products or items to make themselves feel more confident and awesome are bad people. I, myself, have definitely opted for shapewear when the mood strikes–that is my prerogative as a woman in the Western world. But I do think that advertisers are guilty of, at times, highlighting and shaming areas of the body that women would otherwise probably never think twice about.
Here are just a few examples of body parts which, without being told we should be, many of us might never have felt insecure about. Can you think of others? Share them in the comments.
Image: My favorite stock photo of all time (nemke via Shutterstock)