Would it surprise you to hear that the above photo has been digitally altered on Photoshop? Maybe not. Do you care? Maybe…but how much?
Although the video showcased an extreme example of Photoshopping, it wasn’t exactly news to me that magazines use Photoshop to make models look even better than they naturally do. I guess a small part of me breathed a sigh of relief to see that the model herself didn’t actually come waltzing into the studio like that, but I wasn’t compelled to do anything from the video. I didn’t think that Photoshop needed to stop, but I liked knowing that it occurred and to what extent.
Flash forward to a few weeks ago, when a columnist on the popular Greek guy site, Total Frat Move, wrote an article declaring that “sex sells, my friends, and nobody likes it when a symbol of feminine perfection gets ruined by cellulite thighs.” He suggested that using Photoshop on models is better than setting an expectation for the models to engage in an eating disorder to look better naturally.
The article was in the typical pompous, over-the-top humor the website is known for, and I have grown to not take it too seriously. Total Frat Move gets followers by writing about the extreme, just in the same way that magazines gain readership by using Photoshop to enhance their covers. The article was degrading, I’ll give you that, but the point of the site is to rile people up and turn heads. I didn’t feel the need to add a comment because I knew it was mostly a joke unintended for my demographic. A woman getting angry at the article would just be buying into what the article said women would do.
Shortly after the original post on Total Frat Move was published, articles came popping up left and right on my Facebook news feed relating to this topic. Many women posted articles which explained that it was horrible to set unreasonable standards for women. On the contrary, several men posted articles that said women were being over-dramatic about the topic.
I felt like as a woman, I had to side with my fellow ladies, but part of me saw truth in the other perspective. Bombarded with posts, I decided to read them all and form my own opinion.
I think it’s about time we reevaluate the way we perceive our bodies. Throughout February, we will be exploring the topic of body image and how the media represents women.
We’re also declaring February “Fat Talk Free Month” as a way to encourage positive body image. We want you to get in on the movement too. We’ll be creating a photo gallery of images from our readers when they feel their most confident. So send them to firstname.lastname@example.org with your name and what you love about your body and you will be featured on the site!
Thanks for helping us lead a body positivity movement.
See Also: Defining Plus-Sized