Monday, January 25, 2021

My Body Gallery: Do you see your self for real?

February 27, 2010 by  
Filed under Body Dysmorphia

Recently Victoria Beckham was quoted as saying that she and Jennifer Lopez wore the same size. It’s called Body Dysmorphia and according to MyBodyGallery almost all women have some level of body dysmorphia.

A recent study found that;

95% of women overestimate the size of their hips by 16% and their waists by 25%, yet the same women were able to correctly estimate the width of a box. We look in the mirror and cannot see what is actually there.

In January, 2010 My Body Gallery launched a website to battle this problem. is a website that lets women search user uploaded pictures by height, weight, pant size, shirt size and body type. This allows women to more objectively see what their own bodies look like.

In a world saturated with photoshopped images of size zero women there is finally a way for women to see ourselves as we really are. So, let’s start with me.

Here are two images that represent “me” standing 5’9 height and between 140-150 pounds (I would have snapped a pic of me, but I am too cozy sitting in my jammies right now). The most interesting part of this is the difference in pants size. I am a 8-10. The woman on the left is a 2, on the right isΒ  6. Why the difference between the three of us?

5'9, 150 lb, Size 6

5'9, 140 lb, Size 2

Who knows — but the point is who cares!

We are different individuals, different frames, and different ways our bodies distribute our weight.

And I am just fine with that….are you?



14 Responses to “My Body Gallery: Do you see your self for real?”
  1. Candice says:

    Wow, that’s really fascinating. It always boggles me when two people who weigh the same and are the same height can go into the same store and need different sized clothing. We really don’t spend any time talking about the ways we carry our weight differently from each other and how that makes clothes look different. No, instead we’re all supposed to be cookie cutters.

  2. I think that’s a really cool idea, but of course, they don’t have any pictures of someone who matches my specs. The don’t even have someone who is my height and weight.

    • Kat says:

      Same here. I guess we’ll have to snap our own photos and wait till somebody else is as brave as we would be and adds hers.

    • Simone says:

      Yeah, I had to fiddle around a bit to find someone around my size. I ended up adding an inch to my height (I’m really short!), and ten pounds to my weight. Some of the resulting pictures looked pretty familiar…

  3. anon says:

    Oh my god….apparently I look worse than I thought.

  4. Meems says:

    There’s only one picture of a woman who is my height and weight so far, and she’s bigger than I am. I searched for the same weight an inch taller and an inch shorter and mostly found that they, too are bigger than I am. It seems like the biggest disparities in size for women of the same height/weight are at lower weights, though there are a few exceptions.

    Remember, though, that this is a new site, and I think it needs more users to be effective. I like the idea.

  5. ronisweigh says:

    I also didn’t find myself.

    Honestly, I think this is good in theory bad in practice. Am I the only that thinks it reinforces the comparison problem we have?

    See anon’s comment above. There’s that and the opposite problem. Girls getting down on themselves for seeing an image of a women with there specks that looks thinner then they are.

    Just a thought. I’m not sure how I feel about it yet.

    • Simone says:

      I think it could work well in practice if there were *lots* of photos for every given height/weight/size…so basically, if the sight had thousands and thousands of photos.

      If nothing else, it might help folks realize that (for instance) “size 10” is a pretty meaningless descriptor, since it describes such a range of body types. And maybe that could help some folks get over the “I must be a size two OR ELSE*” mentality? One can hope…

      *Needless to say, this mentality is mostly problematic for people life me who *can’t* get to size 2 by any sane method. There’s nothing wrong with size 2 being ones goal, if one has the body type for it.

  6. love2eatinpa says:

    ok, i can’t lie, i can’t wait to go on there and see if they have someone with my specs.
    on the one hand, i think it is an interesting reality check for folks who think they look heavier than they actaully are, but on the other hand, it is another method for us to compare ourselves to one another, which really, do we need more of that?

  7. I was afraid to check it out as it might confirm my distorted views of myself, especially when I’m PMSing. But nothing matching my specs, either.

    Relieved? Yes.

  8. Josie says:

    I have a match, but she looks fatter and is a smaller clothes size. After panicking that i must be huge i’ve concluded that she must have a smaller frame than mine.

    Though this is meant to be positive, it’s also reinforcing our obsession with weight/size/looks.

  9. Tina says:

    I have posted my pictures up there; I won’t tell you which ones πŸ™‚ … here are my thoughts (and I’ve shared them with the webmasters, never heard back).

    Regarding those sizes – (doing my best Andy Rooney impersonation): Have you ever noticed how you can wear one size shirt from one manufacturer, and then you have to wear two sizes bigger when you try a shirt from another manufacturer? Doesn’t that just chap your hide?

    I think the website should use inch or cm measurements instead of sizes to make it more equitable. It still won’t be perfect but it would be better than sizes which can vary so widely. When I posted which size I wear, I chose the largest in the closet; I’ll be honest – I don’t trust that all others on the site have done the same thing… I kinda wonder if they chose the smallest in the closet! I could be wrong, though. πŸ™‚

    Be aware that those body types make a difference too… I type medical reports, and there are plenty of women who weigh a good 40+ pounds more than I do at the same height who have a waist measurement several inches less than mine if they have an hourglass or pear shape body… my apple body figure is more at risk for heart disease and diabetes than theirs.

    I am losing weight to be healthy. I never thought I looked bad in the mirror; only when I would see myself in a photo did I cringe. That’s why I joined MBG, to get a grasp on my body image. I have lost 20+ pounds and am now just 4 pounds shy of being “only” overweight, after being clinically obese for… gosh, really nearly all of my life. I’m looking forward to reaching that goal, passing it, and documenting it with body shots on MBG. πŸ™‚

  10. Anna Colette says:

    It comes from a good impulse – many of us could do with being able to see ourselves more objectively but I also agree with some of the comments that it panders to our obsession with comparing our bodies to other women’s.

    To accept ourselves I think we need to stop objectifying ourselves and try ways of being loving to our bodies – to nurture them with the right food and movement not in order to be a certain size but because it feels good and nourishes our bodies. By being kinder to ourselves in a practical, everyday way making small steps towards self care then I hope we can learn to love ourselves the way we are.

    Would you be interested in doing a guest post on my new blog? I love your site and find it very inspiring. I will do a link to it anyway but would love to hear your views on how we can get a better body image.

  11. Persephone says:

    So I just checked out that website and all the girls who supposedly match my specs look way skinnier than me! Interesting. Makes me think….Either way, this is definitely useful to me. I appreciate that there is something like this out there.

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