January 12, 2012
Everyday magazines produce images of impossible beauty; as a result, many people suffer from poor body images, and even worse, eating disorders. I propose that each magazine company use a scale invented by Hany Farid and Eric Kee that measures how much an image is photo shopped. “Scientists have come up with a way to detect if photographs of celebrities or models have been airbrushed or not and they hope it will provide a universal health warning on magazine images (“Fox News”).” This computer program takes an image that has been retouched and highlights what has been changed. The photo is then judged on a scale from 1 to 5; five being seriously photo shopped. These scientists are giving the truth a chance to be revealed (“Fox News”).

Many other countries have decided to take a stand against Photoshop. Legislation has forced magazines to label all of their photo perfect images, in hopes that this will prevent poor body image amongst the people. Photoshop has taken alterations too far (“Shine from Yahoo”). Images they display are a lie, and it’s time that honesty is reestablished in the media. Beauty has taken an unexpected turn to fantasy; natural beauty needs to be promoted as ideal. In each individual there is an imperfect twist that separates them from the others; this is natural beauty. These imperfections must be valued in order for society to grow with personal confidence and appreciate the beauty surrounding them.

Many argue that these images are art. If this is the case, then artist should be required to sign their work, just like any other artist would do. Some will argue that if society can’t understand that these images have been touched up, then it is their own fault (Gray). However, magazines target the youth to promote their product, for they are at a crucial stage in life were they are seeking role models to establish their own individuality and voice, and insecurities are abundant. Corporations emblaze a product with sweet sounding lies and promises of beauty and acceptance if only the magic elixir is purchased. The youth doesn’t stand a chance against this carefully designed promotion.

A substantial rise in cases of anorexia and poor body image has been blamed on the media’s unrealistic portrayals of the “perfect” female form. They look at these images and dream that they can look like these models. They want beauty so badly they will do anything to fulfill this idealistic representation of beauty; however, this is unattainable for those without a hired artist and make-up crew. Young teenage girls are manipulated to look at themselves in a poor light, and it’s time that magazine companies that use photo shop take responsibility for their photos. I have personally known someone who has suffered tragically from anorexia. She said, for her, it was disheartening to see images of beautiful women that she could never be. In secret, she tried the many techniques magazines described to reach beauty. When the methods continually failed her, she turned to something she knew wouldn’t. It didn’t matter how many compliments of beauty were spoken to her, she only saw beauty in those perfectly masked models and celebrities. Even the models and celebrities are being affected by this outrageous standard. Celebrities are stalked daily by paparazzi taking photos of them at their very worst. Leaving their homes represents a constant fear of criticism; their natural beauty is considered ugly. Most of the time photos of them have been touched up by professionals, and then tabloids paste the truth for society to see. The difference may not be shocking, but for celebrities they worry their beauty will be seen for the imperfect beautiful people that they truly are…just like the rest of us.

There are many different solutions that can be set in place to stop this fantasy. In other countries like the UK, France, and Norway, politicians are asking for a warning label to be printed on photos. The magazine companies are hesitant to follow this suggestion (Gray). Others have posted blogs suggesting these images on magazines be signed. Companies argue that their images are just another expression of art. The most productive method would be the scale that Hany Farid and Eric Kee invented to help this epidemic. This would allow the media to alter images as much as they please, but give opportunity for the people to uncover how much of what we see is unrealistic fantasy. If this scale was enforced, there would only be a positive decrease in teens and adults suffering from poor body image and anorexia.

Photoshop not only hurts the sanctity of the true human form, but destroys the definition of what natural beauty in actually is. There must be a resolution to this silent outcry from society. The publishing industry must be held accountable for the damage they have caused. It is time for honesty to rule over the fantasy images of beauty. Beauty is found in every pore, every blemish, and every imperfection- it is what makes us unique, human and beautiful- without flaw we are without life. When we are all called to the altar of “sameness” we lose something as valuable and unique as the rarest diamond, people sparkle all the brighter when they lack perfection. A society that embraces imperfection is a society that also counts diversity of thought. This may seem like a small an insignificant shift; however, this change in value can promote tolerance, open mindedness, and understanding.

Gray, Katherine. "Photoshopped images could soon come with a warning label." YAHOO! NEWS. Tecca, Nov 29, 2011. Web. 13 Dec 2011. <>.
"Would You Support a Ban on Photoshopped Images?." Shine from YAHOO. The chicks at, Nov. 30,2011. Web. 13 Dec 2011. <>.
("Shine from YAHOO")
. "Is It Real Or Photoshop? Scientists Can Detect Digital Effects." FOX NEWS. News Corp Australian Papers, Dec. 1, 2011. Web. 14 Dec 2011. <>.

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photoshop sucks said...
Jun. 21, 2016 at 11:30 pm
Great work
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