Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Science in Business Administration

Degree Level





Dr. Anne Velliquette


This project addresses the portrayal of women in media and its damaging effects on body image and self-esteem. It raises two critical questions: What negative impact is media creating on women? What can be done to combat these destructive effects?

According to a study done by Common Sense Media, "American teens use an average of 9 hours of media daily, not including for school and homework" (Common Sense Media, 2015). This data, along with many others, shows the severity of media exposure to teens. This has brought a valuable discussion to the table. How has this impacted female body image, self-esteem, and health? The majority of the media is photo-manipulated, displaying a false perception of body image, causing significant concerns for future generations. However, companies such as Dove and Darling have taken a counter-cultural approach to display an authentic version of beauty.

This study takes a historical look at magazine publications in the United States and how they have evolved. Then it dives into Dove's Real Beauty Campaign success and how they have been a vital pioneer in this movement. Lastly, the research methodology and findings from a focus group are discussed where young women were asked to evaluate media's portrayal of women.

This research confirms that media will continue to embed itself into every facet of consumers' lives. If more companies and brands worked to bring diversity into their content, we could see a change for the future generation of women. Likewise, consumers can educate themselves on media literacy and utilize resources to create a healthier relationship with the digital world.


magazine, body image, self-esteem, Dove, Darling, women