Study Says Makeover Shows Make Us Feel Bad

Bad boyfriends…frenemies…makeover TV shows. One of the fundamental questions of human nature is why do we love stuff that may not be so good for our self-esteem?

A new study from the University of Southern California says that that women who watch more makeover shows, like “Nip/Tuck,” “Dr. 90210″ or “The Swan,” feel more insecure about their bodies. It brings a whole new meaning to the words “boob tube,” doesn’t it?

Maybe TV can makeover the word “makeover” and embrace makeunders?

Wouldn’t it be cool if the impact of this study is that TV execs decide not to produce more plastic-surgery-and-makeover-themed shows but instead try and satiate women’s interests in beauty and fashion with an approach that’s more self-esteem friendly? I always really liked the “makeunders” in the late, great Jane magazine. The editors would find a woman with seven products in her hair, heavily made-up eyes and pancake foundation, hand her over to a makeup artist, and teach her how she can to still look good while using less products. A lot of the women appreciated being shown how lovely they really were under all that war paint, and without spending so much time and money. They also didn’t involve any plastic surgery.

Maybe TV can makeover the word “makeover” and embrace makeunders — still stylish and still fun for women to watch, but better for their souls?