22 August 2019
You see it in all the escort agencies and escorts listings/directories in London; a plethora of glossy beauties with flawless skin, perfect bodily proportions and a smile so bright it could be a teeth whitening commercial.
This is the standard of beauty-meeting the demands of clients, in the escorting scene in 2019. These days, escort photographs are photoshopped with a heavy hand and the question is: are these beauty ideals doing more harm than good?
Here are arguments for the beauty standards observed in the London escorting scene:
Right now, social media sets the precedent for what is considered beautiful. The elite and beautiful people are massively influential on social media and their standards of beauty permeates the rest of the world. Since social media is prevalent in the digital age, it has opened up another world of trends and beauty. Women emulate the styles and bodies seen on social media and this is highly influential in the escorting scene as well. Men are influenced by these social media beauty standards too. When they see a beautiful social media influencer, they internalise that this must be the type of woman they desire sexually. Hence, there are more escorts looking like Instagram models or SnapChat models because this is the era of the all influential social media. Increasingly, the demographic of clients using escorts services in London are getting younger and more social media savvy; it pays to adopt the social media beauty standards to capture this clientele.
Escorting is hugely competitive in London and there is pressure to stay solvent for the agencies and escorts themselves. As more women take up escorting in London, the competition increases and the only way to stand out is to look exceptionally good. No wonder escorts invest thousands of pounds in top notch glamour photography that will enhance their best features and then airbrush them to make them look even perfect. If an escort was naturally beautiful, she will still compete by using high end makeup and the best London escort photographers to stand out. Instead of condemning this as setting unrealistic beauty standards, it should be seen as healthy competition. What's the harm of pushing the standards of beauty higher so that the clients receive the best services from the most attractive escorts?
With the elite end of the escorting market, the expectations are higher overall for looks, personality and skills. Clients used to excellence demand the best in terms of services and appearance is considered part of the service. This means an immaculate makeup, attire, skin, hair, nails, a fit physique and allure. The glamour of being an elite escort is ultimately what clients are paying for-these women look impeccable at all times. It may surprise people that some elite escorts do live up to and exceed the image that they present online. They hold the bar very high for other elite service providers.
Living up to these beauty standards is not easy but it is a requisite of being an elite escort in London.
Here are some arguments against maintaining the beauty ideals in the London escorts scene:
The pressure to maintain a perfect appearance is creating so much stress and unrealistic expectations on escorts in London.
Living up to the airbrushed photographs is exhausting.
In particular, escorts are battling identity issues due to the high beauty ideals; they use extreme plastic surgery, experience body dysmorphia and use stage makeup to camouflage perceived flaws.
Furthermore, clients are getting such high expectations about the way an elite escort looks, he will write a negative review if the escort who he books look less than perfect. In fact, he may cancel the booking even if it is the same woman in the photographs. Clients cannot distinguish reality from the impossibly airbrushed perfection that they see online. They are so influenced by what beautiful looks like, that they feel entitled to perfection in appearance. This is the demographic of clients who believe that social media images of Instagram models are real and that airbrushing is a true reflection of how women should look. They are immersed in virtual reality instead of the reality of women's appearance.
If even the most physically beautiful women in the world suffers from cellulite and bloating after a salty meal. how can escorts compete with the image of super slim, leggy models who have been airbrushed on all the escort agency websites.
Its easy to argue that seeing this beauty standard is harmless; but people are subconsciously soaking it up and becoming so self critical/critical of others. It sends out the message that to be a successful escort, you need to look this way and for clients to demand this level of perfection. There are clients and escort girls who are very impressionable to this message- they do not understand that it is merely a marketing tool and not a reflection of reality.
For example, an escort may develop eating disorders, substance abuse or plastic surgery addictions to maintain her weight and body proportions. She may be exercising to the extreme and have a low self esteem. She may attribute her success or failure as an escort to the way she looks, when in reality, it is probably her personality that prevents her from retaining clients. There are escorts who are too obsessed with their appearance and suffering psychological damage.
There is a kickback against the effects of using highly photoshopped images in the London escorting industry, such as clients asking for selfie photos and escorts eliminating the use of photoshop altogether. More realistic and candid photography are starting to emerge.