Roughly 25 years ago, the fashion and advertising industry was revolutionized by a software program called Photoshop. And the damage it is doing to this day has yet to stop.
Few people outside the industries realize how extensively nearly every single image a person sees in print or online has been extensively retouched.
In this article, Victoria’s Secret retoucher reveals her techniques, the professional retoucher explains:
“They come to these photo shoots and, like, they have their arms up in the classic beach pose, and they have, like, hairy armpits. They all have stubbly pubes — all the normal stuff [nonmodels have],” the source says. Even if their armpits were unnaturally smooth they’d still have to be edited — all armpits show up gray in photos, the retoucher says.
Lest you think this is just an issue with sexy underwear models, it’s not.
It has influenced every aspect of the advertising/publishing/entertainment industry and the impact is especially hard on women as they are the most frequently the ones who either request to be photoshopped, are pressured to be photoshopped, or are photoshopped because the stylists, creative directors, or designers decided they “had” to be.
What happens is unrealistic images of impossible-to-achieve-beauty/human shapes are published as “normal” or “achievable” to an unsuspecting public.
‘My eating disorder was perpetuated by retouched magazine photos’
That’s something Canadian Erin Treloar learned the hard way. She struggled with a major eating disorder as a teenager.
“At age 17, I was 5 feet 11 inches (180 centimeters) tall and weighed 89 pounds (40 kilos),” she told DW in an interview. “My internal organs started shutting down, I lost my hair and I had to be admitted to a hospital program.”
Treloar says her eating disorder was largely perpetuated by the media’s definition of beauty: “Having a perfectionist nature and seeing what the media defined as perfect and beautiful, I wanted to achieve that.”
The above comes from this article, How 25 years of Photoshop changed our perception of reality, which has an astonishing video of the changes a model undergoes via photoshopping. Legs and arms lengthens, eye sockets widened, buttocks shrunk, bust enlarged, stomach flattened, and skin completely painted over. Her own mother wouldn’t recognize her. Below is a screen grab from the video.
Now to be fair, while the majority of the damage to self-esteem falls on women because they tend to be the most frequently photoshopped. This blog post here highlights some of those studies. Men are also prey to this negative effect.
Indeed, some men gamely went through the exhaustive process that female models and celebrities go through to create that “perfect” image to see exactly what the fuss is all about. It is documented in this article, Men Recreate Sexy Celebrity Photoshoots And Nails It. It seems like a laugh at first, what with this photo at the top of the article.
But it is as heartbreaking as the teen’s story above when you read this.
All four of the men were horrified at how different the edited versions were to the original photos. They noticed that after seeing the photoshopped version, it made them feel far more insecure and noticed their flaws, and negative parts of themselves that they didn’t even notice before. They thought the experiment was extremely successful in showing not only the four of them the standards women face everyday but also the public.
So why a huge long post about the dangers of relying on images of models and celebrities because they’ve all been photoshopped in a blog about a health coaching app?
Because YOU deserve better.
Because MyHealthStyle Inc. and every health coach on the MyHealthStyle app wants you to be health and happy and not because you look like a model. But because you are healthy and happy and shine.
These unnatural pictures are just that. Unnatural. You will never see them in real life. You can never be them because that human shape can not exist. Or at least it does not exist without major surgery or genetic mutation.
Yes, there are alway some folks in peak physical condition. Or who naturally have a lovely body shape. But the vast majority of us are simply normal. Not fake, photoshop picture “normal”. But real human being normal.
That’s what we want to help you to become. A healthy normal.
And that’s what you can be. The MyHealthStyle app can help. Our app provides you with three credentialed Health Coaches who support you by providing education about nutrition, guidance on fitness, and emotional support when you’ve hit a wall.
And the MyHealthStyle app is different from all other coaching apps available today because we offer real human-to-human daily contact via your smart phone. Not computerized algorithms or automated push notifications. And not just one coach per week. Three Health Coaches.
Why three? Because weight loss is a complicated issue requiring more than just counting calories or steps. So the MyHealthStyle app gives you a Lead Coach who contacts you every day on your main focus. And two Team Coaches who offer holistic support two to three times a week.
That is the power of Positive Coaching via your smart phone.
Imagine what you could accomplish with three MyHealthStyle Health Coaches cheering you on, supporting you. Every step of the way. Every day. Giving you guidance, reassurance, and education..
If you are interested, the MyHealthStyle app is just $10 for your first four weeks and $23 a week after. Just visit www.myhealthstyleapp.com to sign up.
In the meantime, keep visiting our blog and our Facebook page here. We are always happy to help out.