A recent survey among teenaged American girls reveals that 3 out of 4 of them are happy with their bodies. In fact, they've rejected thin fashion models as being unrealistic.
According to a national survey by Girl Scouts of America on the eve of New York City's legendary Fashion Week, the survey of 1,002 girls ages 13 to 17 comes amid continuing controversy over super thin models, so-called 'size zeros', reports Discovery News.
Critics say the models are dangerously underweight and have charged that the fashion industry's preference for waif-like women has led to models engaging in obsessive dieting and extreme weight loss, as well as set a poor example for teenage girls.
The survey revealed that 82 percent said that their peers and friends influenced how they felt about their bodies, 65 percent said it was their parents, and 62 percent reported another family member.
Thin fashion models ranked last by a wide margin, with 54 percent.
About 80 percent of Hispanic girls were satisfied with their bodies, with slightly fewer African American (76 percent) and 72 percent of Caucasian teens.
Perhaps most importantly, most teen girls dislike and reject the thin body image often seen in the fashion industry.
When girls were asked what they thought about the typical fashion model's body, 65 percent stated it was "too skinny", 63 percent said it was unrealistic, 47 percent said "unhealthy", and nearly a third (28 percent) said the body shape was "sick".
These results are very encouraging for America's parents, who often think that most teen girls diet constantly to be thin like the fashion models they see, often leading to eating disorders.
Though this study contradicts many common assumptions about the influence that the fashion industry has over young women, previous studies have found similar results.
The conventional wisdom is that most teen girls have low self-esteem and a poor body image-partly the result of trying to emulate the thin fashion models they see on TV and in magazines.
But fortunately, most girls have a good body image and positive self-esteem, and reject the images in fashion magazines as unrealistic and unattractive.
Girls are smarter than often given credit for, and aren't the gullible fashion zombies that popular culture sometimes depicts.