Decades ago women were cherished for their overtly round hips, plump buttocks and full, natural breasts. However, in the 21st century the idea of naturally occurring beauty has all but disappeared, leading to an incessant need to alter bodies in order to have “normal” appearances.

“Clearly, there’s an idealized breast out there, round and very full. Trouble is, it doesn’t quite go with another ideal — the slim, slim torso,” Canadian freelance journalist Judith Timson states in her article “Breast Stroke.” “Those Victoria’s Secret models, for instance, with their slender bodies and major boobage — this is not an anatomically normal set of events. No exercise, diet or potion can produce those contradictory proportions for most women. But surgery can.”

The reality is that people, namely women, are consulting plastic surgeons to obtain ideal bodies whether or not their bodies are anatomically correct. In the 21st century, American society has done away with uniqueness and created a norm which most women feel the need to conform to.

“Comedian Joan Rivers was asked on an A&E documentary to come up with one word to describe breasts today,” Timson continued in her article, “and, ever succinct, she replied ‘plastic.’”

Breast augmentations aren’t becoming increasingly popular alone; aesthetic surgeries are becoming popular as a whole.

“In 1999, American women had 167,318 breast augmentations, 120,160 blepharoplasties, 201,083 liposuction procedures, and 66,096 face lifts,” Debra L. Gimlin stated in her article “Cosmetic Surgery: Paying for Your Beauty.” That was 13 years ago; can you imagine what the numbers must be now considering the technology that allows for the portrayal of the perfect female body in advertisements?

But that’s not all. Now there is a widespread infatuation pertaining to labia reduction and reshaping surgery. As Simone Weil Davis states in “Loose Lips Sink Ships,” women are not only hoping for the boobs and bronze of porn stars and models but for their vaginas as well.

After being exposed to literally thousands of advertisements everyday, it’s no wonder why women feel inferior in their own untouched bodies. Once upon a time such sightings didn’t occur, and bodies were left up to the imagination. Now scantily clad, well-endowed women are spanning the pages of every magazine, are on every billboard and in every television show and movie. These ideal bodies are inescapable.

Women are going to extreme lengths to obtain the perfect body that the media often portrays. Serious complications, even death, are not enough to keep ordinary people from attaining a socially acceptable body.

When we think about socially acceptable bodies, we begin to question what makes one such. Is it a body that gains attention? Does a body need to be altered to maintain a relationship? Will an alteration diminish anxiety and self-consciousness?

Surprisingly, Gimlin reveals in her article that many women approach the idea of plastic surgery in order to match their outer appearance with their inner spirit. If that’s the case then it’s a wonder why so many women are void of unique qualities. If they are trying to conquer their inner sprit with lipoed thighs, larger breasts, smaller labia, injected lips and raised eyebrows, what makes them any different from the other women that routinely go under the knife?