Monday, December 19, 2011

Photoshop and Virtual Bodies

I'm a pretty happy-go-lucky person for the most part. But if there's one thing that makes my blood boil it's the prevalence of photoshopping in the beauty and fashion industry to present unrealistic, artificial beauty.

The thing that really tipped me over the edge was the fact that H&M has decided to only use virtual models to highlight their clothes now. Apparently "The demands are so great that H&M, among the poor photo models, cannot find someone with both body and face that can sell their bikinis" says their spokesperson. Well if there's not a supermodel in the world "pretty enough" to wear their bikinis or lingerie there's no way I'll ever be shopping at their stores again.
H&M released a pathetic faux apology: "It is regrettable if we have led anyone to believe that the virtual mannequins should be real bodies. "
really why would I ever think this was a real model with a real body???

And while I love beautiful clothes, gorgeous undergarments and hot swimsuits, this is getting out of control. Yes models are gorgeous, but if we only think they're gorgeous after being "perfected" by a computer, that's harmful to everyone. Being constantly bombarded by images of false, unattainable perfection hurts everyone's self-esteem and body image.

Beauty Redefined did a fantastic post about how Photoshop alters our perception of reality. It's a really a must-read with fantastic illustrations.

Model's hips and waist "too big"? Why not just get rid of them?

Spend 10 seconds of your life toggling between these "before" and "after" examples of celebrities and i guarantee next time you open up a magazine you'll take a more critical look.

But on the brightside: Procter and Gamble has recently refused to show ads for cosmetic companies that feature unrealistic images. Because I'd like to see how Covergirl mascera really looks on my eyelashes, instead what it can look like if photoshop makes them 30x thicker.

And everytime we expose the behind the scenes, and understand what those pictures really look like, I think we all grow a little stronger and wiser. Or at least I hope so!

What do you think? Will Photoshop ever disappear? Is it for good or evil?


  1. If the swimsuit don't look good on a models body, it seems as if the problem is with THE SWIMSUIT not the model. If the clothes H&M designs don't look good enough on a model, they should be redesigning the CLOTHES since REAL people wear them.


  2. RIGHT. I agree. Or maybe they should redefine what "looking good" means. Last time I checked, it was way hotter to be a real person than plastic.