When college student Mackenzie Pearson wrote an article about how women prefer the ‘dad’ body type on men, social media exploded with both agreement and outrage.
In her article, Pearson describes the Dad Bod as “a nice balance between a beer gut and working out.” A man with a Dad Bod is not necessarily overweight, but has a bit of chubbiness. Someone who has the ‘dad’ body type does not have to be a father, but just has to look as though he does not spend all of his time in the gym.
Along with the article came the Dad Bod trend, in which some agreed to having a preference for this body type over a man who is very fit, and men took to Instagram posting pictures of their #DadBod to specialized accounts.
Then, women got mad. Many women were left wondering why everyone was so accepting of a man with a bit of a chub, but was not as accepting of unfit women. Women began to state that the concept was sexist, and that men were already living at a lower beauty standard than women.
In response to the trend, women who are actual mothers began posting their bodies on social media as well, embracing their after-pregnancy bellies and using the hashtag #MomBod.
Women can feel pressured to live up to the high beauty standards that are placed upon them by society, such as losing the weight of having a child quickly after birth. Some women find difficulty in feeling attractive again after giving birth due to their newly stretched bellies.
The Dad Bod has been seen within the media for a long time, with celebrities like Jason Segal and Leonardo DiCaprio showing off their average body types. Women who have a Mom Bod are rarely seen in movies, TV shows or magazines and when they are, are often used for comic relief.
Although there are some pressures from society for men to be physically fit, the pressure on women to be thin and shapely can be overwhelming or difficult to bear. According to DoSomething.org, approximately 91 percent of women are unhappy with their bodies and only 5 percent of women have the body type portrayed in media naturally.