TV reality show celebrity, Kim Kardashian, bravely ignores the taunts and “shame” of physical imperfections and posts the “before Photoshop” version of her body on her website after critics point out that she had “cellulite.”
Kardashian states,”I’m proud of my body and my curves and this picture coming out is probably helpful for everyone to see that just because I am on the cover of a magazine doesn’t mean I’m perfect.”
What is positive about Kardashian’s bold action, beyond her resistance to conforming to cultural pressures towards unrealistic body image (marketed by magazines), is the opportunity to see behind the curtain of what alterations are typically done by fashion publications. See larger versions of both before and after images on the blog, Feministing.com.
One commenter on Feministing.com, Rachel from WY, after examining the before and after shots herself said (emphasis original): “THEY LIGHTENED HER SKIN!! WTF!! They also trimmed her waist, thighs, and arms and ‘cleaned up’ her hair line. Ugh.”
StinkyJournalism observes that the entire outline of her body has been smoothed and her head made smaller.
Teacherwoman, in another Feministing comment said, ” I even forget sometimes that magazine pictures are photoshopped. I look at Kim, who has curves like me, and wonder: How can she have that shape without any cellulite? Photos like this bring me back to reality. Duh! I wish photoshop didn’t even exist!”
Teacherwoman is right. It is really difficult to remember that magazine editors’ use of heavily Photoshopped images distorts our expectations of what is normal or even humanly possible. There is a growing movement of people interested in getting the magazine industry to stop this practice. Creativebits.org posted a video circulating the Internet that provides a further window view into how Photoshop alterations are done. Go to video.