The problem with doing so, as Thompson (1990) points out is that the ideal, as propagated by the media and the fashion industry, is twenty percent below the weight which science has defined as the healthy minimum. The implication here is that not only are women being pressured to live a life on continual dieting, virtually starving themselves in the midst of plenty, but are doing so at the cost of their health and, in the more critical of the cases, at the cost of their lives.
Some have argued that the media is blameless in the proliferation of anorexia nervosa, maintaining anorexia to be symptomatic of psychological problems and mental ill-health. While not denying the possible veracity of the aforementioned claim, that does not absolve the media for complicity. Schouten, (1991) a consumer behavior and marketing specialist, argues that the onset of anorexia usually ages 11-18, coincides with the age period when girls/female adolescents are most impressionable and highly vulnerable to the unquestioning acceptance of media claims. As Levine and Smolok (2004) explain, to the extent that marketers advertise and promote the said body type in their promotion of fashion, they quite effectively engage in the advertising of a particular body image and beauty ideal. Hence, as the target audience consumes the advertised fashion, they also consume the advertised beauty ideal and body image.
Marketers have to adopt a heightened sense of responsibility towards their target audience.