The Bulimia Project is an organization that raises awareness about eating disorders; they requested that AI create images of the “perfect” male and female bodies based on what is most popular on social media.
Their findings indicate that tall, dark, and attractive men are more preferred than short, stocky women with light hair, olive skin, dark eyes, and a thin build.
Dall-E 2, Stable Diffusion, and Midjourney were only some of the AI image generators used for this project, with all of the systems seemingly leaning toward archaic Caucasian beauty standards when creating their “perfect” male and female bodies.
According to the Daily Mail, researchers believe AIs are creating visuals based on people’s reactions to posts on social media and online searches.
Almost half of the ideal female depictions featured ladies with blonde hair. Brown eyes and olive complexion were common features among them.
The majority of the males depicted in the photos had dark hair and beards. They, too, adopted the olive complexion of the ladies. Plump lips, flawless skin, and other artificially enhanced traits were common among the “perfect” people.
Some photographs can be easily recognized as phony since they were created using artificial intelligence, while others look so natural that they could easily pass for actual people.
Following the revelation of the findings, the team issued a statement acknowledging the sexual overtones of the photos, adding, “Considering that social media uses algorithms based on which content gets the most lingering eyes, it’s easy to guess why AI’s renderings would come out more sexualized.”
They admitted that there were unnatural proportions between bodily parts and placed much of the blame on the filters used on social media.
No one can realistically expect to attain the physical standards set by social media in this day of Instagram and Snapchat filters.
So, why bother striving to achieve impossible standards? Maintaining realistic standards for one’s own physical appearance is good for one’s mental and physical wellbeing.