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Beauty, Photoshop and the Media - keep it REAL people

Hey folks, today, I don’t have time to write much, so I am going to let a bunch of pictures do the talking. They say ‘a picture says a thousand words’, so hopefully these pictures will tell you all you need to know.

I gathered these images from the net, I do not have any permission to reproduce them, so all copyrights are assigned to the original owners, whoever they may be!

I have heard a lot of talk lately about the ridiculous level of Photoshop use, about how nothing we see is ‘real’ any more, we can’t trust anything we see in print or on screen. We talk about Photoshop, because it’s the best known image-manipulation software, but in fact there are many people and computers involved in creating the stereotypical images of perfection that we see in magazines, on TV and on billboards. There are professional make-up artists, hair extensions and hair stylists, fashion stylists, wardrobe experts, set designed, professional photographers with their lights and lenses, and then the computers set to work slimming thighs and eliminating blemishes.

What we see in the media, the images used in advertising, selling us everything from bathrooms to holidays, slimming foods to make up, clothes to cars, are not REAL. We are being sold a lie, and REAL people in the REAL world can never look like the images the media use to sell us these dreams.

As the line in the Baz Luhrmann song says “Don’t read beauty magazines, they will only make you feel ugly.”

It saddens me that we all, men and women, though particularly women, impressionable young women, come under this insane, cruel pressure every single day.

I have written about this before –


So now, I just want to share some images with you, to help YOU see the truth.


This lady was photographed (straight shots, no tricks) before and after being made up by a professional make-up artist.

make up artist pro

There are perceived notions of ‘beauty’ and the media tries to convince us all that we should look a certain way. We are pushed to believe that men should all be square-jawed and muscular with a 6-pack, women should all be rail thin, busty-blondes with perfect skin, and so on. Thankfully, beauty is not a “one size fits all” definition, we are all attracted to something different.

Personally, I don’t like women too plastered in make-up, and I think the women who can go out without any make-up at all and still look great, those are the real beauties. Good skin doesn’t come from creams and cover-ups, lotions and potions, it comes from clean healthy living, good hydration and avoiding junk food and chemicals. Beautiful healthy insides, makes for beautiful healthy looks on the outside, in my opinion.

But enough of my opinion.

This is an actress and model by the name of Tara Reid Tara_reid_5-1-

(I don’t know who she is, sorry, I don’t read magazines and I don’t watch TV!!) This is how the magazines want you to think of Ms Reid:


This is the real Tara Reid, no pose, no pro lighting, and no airbrush, just real.

skinny actress Tara Reid


This is another actress, her name is Jennifer Lawrence jennifer-lawrence-2a

(again, I am sorry but I don’t know who she is either!!). This is how they make her look for the magazines.


But this is how she really looks, without the help of Photoshop and her stylist.

Jennifer Lawrence

Normal. She looks, normal. She has a nice bum, not too fat not too thin, but those legs are not the perfectly smooth, blemish-free slender pins in the magazine images, are they…it looks to me like she hasn’t lifted any weights in a while, but she looks fine, young and healthy. Normal, she just looks normal. Not ‘media perfect’, just normal, the way normal, real people look.

Unlike Ms Reid, who looks awful, sorry to say, but way too skinny, not healthy at all.

This next picture shows a catwalk model on the runway in Rio. Fashion Week in Rio, Brazil - 17 Apr 2022

These skinny rear’s may look good posing motionless in a tight dress, but as soon as they move, the lack of muscle and the obvious lack of shape quickly becomes really rather unattractive in my opinion.

By comparison, here is a fit female body – I have chosen an athlete (beach volleyball player) to try to contrast the catwalk model’s ‘rear view’ with someone who works out and manages to stay slim and fit with a focus on health, sport, fitness and performance, rather than an unhealthy focus on being rail thin. I think 99.99% of men and women, young and old, would agree, the athlete has a far nicer bum and legs than the catwalk model. No sexism, ladies, I could put together a similar post for men…I am just using ladies because they DO suffer the larger proportion of media-stereotyping and ‘false advertising’.


Beauty should not be attached to being skinny. These images are my little attempt to help a few people to see, that “skinny” is a) not actually a particularly desirable goal, and in fact “fit and toned” is far more desirable, and b) the majority of the “beauty” we see in the media, is fake! These actresses and models, most of them simply are NOT really that thin, not that ‘perfect’ and not that toned. The pictures are just NOT REAL!

Weight Stereotyping

This ceaseless media bombardment nurtures unhealthy thinking, and promotes prejudices in the way we think of people. I won’t delve into the mental and emotional side of things now…just let you think on it for a while.


So finally, I offer a picture of myself, taken last week.


And now here is some toned, ripped, muscle-bound gorgeous hunk, such as the media would like me to think I should look like. damnfit

I don’t look like him, and I never will, he’s a dream that less than 1% of real men will ever achieve, and the image is probably airbrushed or at least lit to make his abs stand out!

But that’s OK, I reckon I look OK, I’m 43 years old, fit-as-a-fiddle and very healthy. I have tons of energy, never get sick, never have to take a day off, I feel great and I know I am healthy.

Here is me, rather sweaty just after a morning run.


So I think my focus is in the right place, on HEALTH, not on getting a 6-pack.

  • We should ALL focus on health. Use a mirror and a tape measure to gauge our weight and shape, not bathroom scales
  • If you want clear skin, drink more water, and wear less make-up
  • If you want shapely bums. Legs and tums – work out, lift weights, run, squat – don’t think that starving yourself is a route to a beautiful body
  • If you want to look good from the outside, with clothes on, or naked, then spend your time and energy being HEALTHY on the inside, not on being skinny. The body shape and good skin are the end products of wise choices

Health not weight, focus

All feedback and comments welcome.

With love and respect to all.
Karl. MotherNaturesDiet







9 Comments Post a comment
  1. I love this post. Wise words. Thank you! I’m going to share this with my Twitter followers. 🙂

    December 13, 2021
  2. Hi,

    I know this is an old post but….While I agree with some of what you write, I do not think that these photos were taken within the same time frame.

    July 3, 2021
    • Hi, yes, I think there is likely a date difference…I cannot vouch for the dates the images were taken. But, I don’t think that substantially changes the message. The point I was trying to convey in this article, is to say that the media, with all it’s photoshop airbrushing, pro photography, favourable lighting and so on, portrays an image that is largely not real, largely unattainable….it’s selling false ideals…no matter how hard we try, we’ll never look like the models in the magazines.

      July 4, 2021
  3. Gwiz, we need less of these falsified images and more snap shots of these celebs without the posing

    October 25, 2021

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  1. 2013 Popular Posts #3: Beauty, Photoshop and the Media – keep it REAL people | MotherNaturesDiet
  2. Fat shaming, beach bodies and thigh gaps… | MotherNaturesDiet

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