Photoshop: the realistic image of beauty

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Photoshop, whether you like it or not, has quintessentially taken over our mind-set and way of thinking. We have become accustomed to flawless airbrushed skin and abnormal sized waists within our media. Billboard signs plastered with the ideal physique and magazines projecting glistening white teeth. But how have such unrealistic images become the realistic image of beauty?

The internet is crawling with Photoshop mishaps and manipulation. Scrolling through typical clothing websites, aimed specifically towards young teenage girls, Photoshop is an obvious crime. But it appears every single one of us is guilty, from Instagram and Snapchat filters to using Photoshop ourselves, it has become part of every day life.

However, the fashion industry always seems to take it a step too far. Actress and model Zendaya recently spoke out against the American magazine Modeliste after they edited her images to appear slimmer and skinnier. In retaliation, she posted the original image on Instagram and stated, “These are the things that make women self-conscious, that create the unrealistic ideas of beauty that we have.”

The magazine eventually removed the Photoshopped images and released the raw photographs across the internet. But have the unrealistic depictions of beauty and body image already been carved into the subconscious? Therefore, is it too late for these small actions of natural beauty to be released into society?

Last summer, American Eagle’s Aerie Underwear launched a new campaign that promised to show models and brand ambassadors untouched, presenting blemishes, stretchmarks and all. Emma Roberts happily assisted the campaign gaining a whopping 184,000 likes on Instagram in just fifteen hours posing the statement “REAL is sexy. REAL is cool!!” In addition, following the brands refusal to airbrush, their sales increased by ten per cent.

Of course it is wonderful that these famous young women are promoting positive body image, but I hear you mutter, ‘they’re models, of course they look amazing!’ And yes, you are correct, they are bound to look flawless whatever the weather but change has to start somewhere, right?

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