The Media M.M.

Magazine covers are misleading. Eating disorders are sickening. Photoshop is the enemy. Photoshop is by far one of the most negative inventions in today’s world.

This summer, I was a full time nanny for two absolutely beautiful 7 year old girls. One scorching day after a trip to the park, we went to the grocery store to get some ice cream and cool down. As we were in line checking out, one of the little girls looked at the covers of the magazines forced at eye level. She glanced at Shape magazine, gazed at me and asked “Why don’t I look like her?” As the three of us sat down outside to eat our ice cream I noticed that she had taken one bite of her ice cream and then set it aside. She told me that she wanted to look like the girl on the cover of the magazine. That’s when I realized how disturbing the photoshop industry is and the impact it is undoubtedly having on the world.

Each year, an estimated 20 million women and 10 million men suffer from eating disorders. At the age of just 6, girls begin to notice differences in body types. Photoshop is one of the greatest contributors to this deadly illness. The media industry is constantly manipulating every image put in magazines and on the television. These companies refurbish each individual image until it is visually appealing and has been transformed into the “ideal representation.” The expectations that we are attempting to live up to are completely false. Only 5% of the world’s population naturally has the body type depicted through the media and even they don’t look like what we see on the cover of magazines.  Photoshop is promoting an idea that is impossible to obtain.

Not only is photoshop training us to “get fit” and have a “beach bod” but it’s changing the reality of beauty as well. We continually see perfect complexions, bleached teeth and wrinkle free skin. The idea that a face should look airbrushed  is just ludicrous.I routinely look at the socialites and drool over their beauty and perfection, then quickly realize what I’m looking at just isn’t real. Our society is accustomed to the idea that pores don’t exist and that having a zit is the end of the world. That just isn’t sensible, and the fact that we unknowingly look at acne or any other “imperfection” as  negative is just shameless.

We are unique. Each one of us is different, and with good reason. The world would be such a humdrum place if we all looked the same. Photoshop is changing what it means to be human. If we aren’t allowed to be human what can we be?

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