Bumble says daters are more body conscious than they were pre-Covid

Spending 18 months indoors gave us ample opportunity to look at ourselves, obsess over ‘flaws’, and notice things we hadn’t before.

A study also found that most of us experienced changes to our physiques in lockdown.

That change in lifestyle has been linked to a rise in demand for Botox and other beauty procedures, and even worsening experiences of body dysmorphia thanks to the likes of video calls.

So dating app Bumble unsurprisingly found in its latest research that users’ confidence in physical appearance has dipped in this time.

Over half of adults surveyed are now more concerned about their looks than they were pre-covid, and a slightly higher figure are less confident in their physical appearance.

Even with traditional beach holidays turned upside down (and not happening for much of the nation), the idea of having a ‘summer body’ still prevails and eats into the consciousness of 58% involved in the study.

The same figure of people under the age of 34 will even cancel a date due to feeling insecure in their body.

A summer of love has been predicted for months, but clearly this isn’t a simple and easy time to get back into the dating scene for all single people.

So why is it happening more so now?

Dr Caroline West, who specialises in sex and relationships, says the pressure that comes with dating makes us more critical of our looks and body image.

‘There’s always pressure to look and feel your best when you’re putting yourself out there to date, especially if you’re interested in meeting someone in real life that you’ve clicked with already.

‘The pandemic has been a difficult time for us all, lest we forget limited contact with others and more time to reflect on ourselves and be self-critical.

‘This may have contributed to increased feelings of anxiety when it comes to meeting new people and can leave some lacking confidence. Our bodies may have changed during lockdown, and that’s okay,’ she says.

Although, it is common to experience these feelings given the emphasis society places on looks and the standard within that.

Dr West adds: ‘However, unfortunately due to a variety of factors including body shaming language used in society, perpetuated images of “the perfect body” as well as outdated societal pressures, body confidence issues can niggle their way into even the most confident women who feel that they don’t fit into these cultural and societal beauty standards.’

Given the year we’ve had on top of pre-existing beauty norms, it’s understandable that more people are feeling this way.

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