Photoshop, and why it is bad for women

I touched on the image of women in the media and advertising, but i wanted to explore the other related topic of touching up images and the use of Photoshop. I want to clarify, other software packages are available and I don’t have a beef with Photoshop itself, but in common parlance, Photoshop is used as the catch all for image enhancement of photos. It is estimated that ALL images of women in advertising are touched up to create a prefect image of what a woman looks like. Lets look at some examples:

In the Glamour cover of  America Ferrara, it isn’t her body; her head was photoshopped on.

Or this one, on the left is the original, on the right is the photoshopped version (source).

We need to step out an understand the impact that excessively touching up has on women. None of us can look like we’ve been touched up, and thus it is setting ourselves up for disaster of unrealistic expectations. More and more people in the media are speaking out, Kate Winslet and Brad Pitt are just 2 examples. But my beef is that we shouldn’t have to feel like this, we shouldn’t have to want to look like fake versions of other people. Even Cindy Crawford said, “I wish I looked like Cindy Crawford”. We need to be able to accept ourselves, pores and all.

But at least the UK is doing somethingg about it. More and more adverts are being banned for excessive photoshopping, like this one:

I remember seeing this advert in a magazine. It took me a few seconds to even recognise that it’s Julia Roberts. That’s how photoshopped she is.

It’s just ridiculous that we’re expected to live up to what the actresses and models themselves can’t live up to. I say, to hell with it. I am who I am, wrinkles, pores, fine lines, a bit of flab and all.


One response to “Photoshop, and why it is bad for women

  1. And with this goes the underlying belief that we owe it to society to be attractive. Screw that!

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