A picture of Hira Mani is being talked about on social media for its bad editing. It seems that some photo manipulation app has been used to reshape the subject’s original body. The actress also appears to be thinner than usual but the edges are not refined properly. One can see from the photo that there is a little distortion in the circled area under her arms.
However, it is not the bad editing skill, but the purpose of that very editing that is debatable. The idea of celebrities manipulating their images to look in a particular way promotes the stereotypical standards of beauty and does not show regard for the bodies of common people. It spreads the notion that a person can only be beautiful if they tone their body in a specific way.
What’s Wrong with this Picture of Hira Mani?
Hira is a popular contemporary actress in Pakistan who has appeared in numerous dramas like Jab We Wed (2014), Yaqeen Ka Safar (2017), Do Bol (2019), and Ghalti (2019). She started her career as a video jockey and soon started hosting her show called Hum 2 Hamara Show on Hum TV. She made her acting debut in the Pakistani drama industry in Meri Teri Kahani (2012) with her husband Salman Saqib Sheikh aka Mani. She has 6.4 million followers on Instagram so whatever she does has an impact on the masses.
Even though she has a right to look she wants but her actions can lead her followers to do the same. Many of the viewers in Pakistan may not realize that the image is edited so they can end up getting the wrong impression that it is real. They would believe that Hira looks like that and may get impressed and try to do the same to themselves.
Popular public figures like Hira Mani are seen as “influencers” on the internet. Many people grow attached to their lifestyle and start thinking that their life is not perfect if it is not like them. One may see similar kinds of pictures on social media that promote unrealistic beauty standards that are difficult to achieve for common viewers.
How Celebrities Play a Role in Promoting False Ideas about Body?
This picture of Hira Mani shows how scary it can be to slim a person digitally. Sadly, this practice is quite popular among social media influencers whether stars or commoners, who have been trying to appear with a particular type of body image on the internet, considering it an ultimate beauty standard.
Celebrities play a key role in shaping trends. However, in the process, they arguably cause their followers to fall prone to multiple mental conditions such as body anxiety and body image disorder. Even Instagram influencers post pictures with different filters and beautifying tweaks. Some do it in an attempt to be the brand ambassador for different products but at the same time, they create unrealistic standards for beauty.
It also shows that models even in reality don’t look the way they appear on online platforms and take help from filters and beauty products.
Global Issue and Consequences
It’s not only the case with Hira Mani, international stars have also been criticized for similar reasons.
Reality TV star Kim Kardashian often faces criticism for the same practice in her photos. About Kardashian, Body Matters Australasia Psychologist Sarah McMahon reported that normalizing such behavior can be damaging to the self-esteem of young girls. It makes them think that they are not beautiful or something so they grow unsatisfied with their original body and suffer from eating disorders.
In 2015, a lip challenge went viral little girls started making their lips as thick as that of popular American model Kylie Jenner. Reportedly, the teenagers inserted their lips into crockery with small openings like shot glasses, bottles, or small jars. Then they sucked out the air, creating a vacuum and pulling out the lips, making them as pouty as those of the model. Some attempts were gone wrong and girls started to end up with bruises, torn skin, and soreness. The model faced a lot of criticism for her lips challenge that promoted thick lips as something important to have.
Similarly, last year, Unilever changed the name of its popular whitening cream, Fair & Lovely following the criticism regarding the meaning of its name. Critics said that the manufacturer pushed the idea that only being fair was lovely and dark-skinned customers should just use their product to look fair.
Celebrities tend to make their fans follow their behavior so they must promote those activities that do not influence teenagers to take dramatic steps. Gaining attention is fine but it can also be done without promoting manipulation of one’s original body.