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Retouched, unretouched, my problem with leaks.

February 19, 2015

“Beyonce Unretouched” just crawled up my Facebook newsfeed. Before that it was the “incredible” unretouched photos of Cindy Crawford that it now turns out she had no intention of releasing. What is wrong with us? I’m sick of it. End of my rope.

What are we accomplishing? Besides humiliation and shame? You may say, “Oh, well it’s a takedown of the photoshop culture”, or “It gets rid of unrealistic expectations”. Hi, it’s a person. A. Person. Most often, a woman. And it’s women who most often share the images, in my experience at least.

Let’s do an experiment:

Get up tomorrow, no matter how you’re feeling, how you slept, or what you ate the night before, put on make up, stand under the brightest light you can find, and take a picture. How did it go?

You might be saying, “But Clementine, I don’t have professionals helping me, so it’s different.” And to that I say, it’s not. Not really. Skin has texture, sometimes thighs do too, and an HD camera is going to capture it all. And millions, maybe billions of people are going to see that picture. I’d venture to say that given technology today even Giselle would need a little retouching to look the way she would in regular everyday life.

How can we stop this? How do we change, how do we not Lord of the Flies every woman who changes her appearance or dares to have a pimple digitally removed?

Let’s applaud Viola Davis and her natural hair, Lena Dunham and her body, and all those who put themselves out there for change. Let’s not click the links, the leaks, and stop sharing posts meant to hurt and humiliate under the guise of “normalizing” celebrities, and feeling better about ourselves.

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