Research Journal Task Two

Comparing of Images From the Media

Every day in the media we see people changing their physical appearance for varying reasons, but does changing the way you look mean changing  your identity?

A recent news article tells the story of two young women who surgically changed their physical appearance. Sisters, Karyse Coley, 21, and Deanna Coley, 19, both had a surgical procedure to change their noses. To a lot of people going under the knife seems like an extreme measure, but there is an increasing number of women and men who are willing to go that far to change the way they look. A modern day, common incentive to do this is the “selfie”. People will go to extreme measures to achieve the “perfect selfie” but is this perfect image on ones self a clear reflection of their identity? I believe that a persons identity is made up of a huge variety of different things, their upbringing, their family, their personality traits. However a big part in expressing your identity is through the way look. Your appearance is your first impression on someone,its the way we present ourselves to the rest of the world. But how much the way we look affects us varies in different people. To these sisters the boost of confidence they got through changing their appearance changed their personality, making them less insecure and more outgoing. “It might sound stupid because its just a nose, but it will make me much more confident”explained Karyse. There is a certain pressure on young women in society today, and its not just from the media, its all over social media. Its not just the celebrities that young girls aspire to be like, they see women on social media every day sharing their version of the “perfect selfie” and if you don’t look like that are you not perfect? To many of us, an identity is who we are, but to many others the way we look affects their personality so much that it becomes their identity.

nose job sisters
Karyse, 21 and Deanna, 19.

Religion can also play a huge part in the making of someones identity. A lot of the time religion can affect every aspect of a persons life. It affects their physical identity, what they where, and the way other people see them. Many muslim women chose to wear a hijab, this is a way of staying in keeping with their beliefs and looking modest. However a recent news story suggests that many muslim women find it very difficult to shop in normal stores and find clothes suitable for them to wear. In a bid to make this task easier for these woman, ‘Dolce and Gabbana’ have launched ‘The Dolce and Gabbana abaya collection’. But does this really make it easier for muslim women to express their identity through fashion. For most people Dolce and Gabbana’s price range is way out of reach. This raises the question as to why more high street stores don’t accommodate for the needs of muslim women. Your physical appearance and the way you dress is the easiest way to express your identity to the rest of the world, and according to the article in ‘The Guardian’, “women can be targeted for “looking Muslim”. Women are subject to racial abuse because of the way they look, more specifically, the religious attire that they are wearing. What people chose to wear is an expression of their identity, so why are muslim women in the UK so limited to what they can buy? The article states that “collections like D&G’s, even if well intentioned, still keep us on the outer edges of inclusivity by virtue of the fact that it feels rare instead of mundane.” Muslim women feel excluded from the fashion industry, and struggle to express themselves through fashion in the same way the rest of the world can.




For many young women, from all different backgrounds, the way they look plays a huge part in the making of who they are. It can affect their confidence and change their personality due to insecurities. Although women are affected in different ways, be it wanting to change your physical features, or struggling to express who you are through fashion due to your religion, nearly all women are affected by he way in which they look. The expression of ones identity can be a struggle for many young women regardless of your beliefs, race, age or any other factor, we are all the same.


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