March 30, 2021
Do most women prefer a man with muscles, or one with a few “soft spots”—including one for them?
The term “dad bod” was first popularized in the mid-2010’s to harshly critique the beach bodies of actors like Leonardo DiCaprio and Chris Pratt , as well as non-traditional Hollywood shapes of actors such as Jason Segel and Seth Rogan. The term never quite fell out of favor: Last year Zac Efron was body shamed online for lacking a “cut” physique.
The Dating.com survey—conducted among 2,000 respondents—found that 20% of participants claimed that bod shape did not matter at all when it came to finding a partner. It also found that only 15% liked a “Barbie or Ken-like body type.”
“Very fit and in-shape bodies are seen as ideal when it comes to attracting a partner, however the users of Dating.com just proved that isn’t always the case when it comes to real-life romances,” Maria Sullivan, vice-president of the dating website, told The Guardian. “Movies and TV shows tend to promote ‘Barbie and Ken’ body types—giving people the idea they need to look similar in order to find their match. We are happy to confirm that is not how the real world world really operates.”
“I don’t think I ever took my shirt off in a pool until I was in my mid-30s,” he wrote, “[It] probably would have happened sooner if my childhood insecurities weren’t exacerbated by years of public mockery about my body by press and interviewers.”
Body diversity has been a hot topic in fashion. Last year, Rihanna’s Savage X Fenty featured its first plus-size male model, Steven G, US size 2XL, modeling boxer briefs. “Big men, just like women, are hardly represented,” he told The Guardian.
But the picture in the fashion industry remains mixed. The women’s spring and summer fashion shows last year featured historic plus-size firsts. Versace featured three plus size models, Precious Lee, Jill Kortleve and Alva Claire, for the first time. Meanwhile, Paloma Elsesser was Salvatore Ferragamo’s first curvy model.
But, according to a report from The Fashion Spot, body diversity representation was actually down overall during the shows. There were only 19 plus size models on the catwalks, compared to 34 during the last autumn and winter 2020 season.
Research contact: @guardian