Action Tips: Show Reality Behind Photoshopped Images

The media tells girls that in order to be beautiful, they need to look just like the models and celebrities in advertisements and on the covers of magazines. The catch? Even the models and celebrities don’t look that flawless in real life. Photoshop has permeated the beauty industry making most photos we see fake perceptions of reality.

How do we change this? Inform people! Hold a workshop at your school to show girls the truth behind photos.

Show a video

Recently, a lot of videos have been uploaded to YouTube that show the transformation of a model. They start with a model looking very plain and end with the long photoshop process. It’s eye-opening to watch the lengths at which photos are altered. Explain to people at the workshop that many photos that they find beautiful have undergone the same process. The beauty they think they see is fabricated. Get examples of videos here and here.

Find Celeb and Model Examples

Many celebs who are advocates for positive body image have released ‘before’ and ‘after’ images when they’ve been over-photoshopped. Show examples of these to prove to girls that what they see in magazines and advertisements isn’t real. (For example, here, here, here and here.) Explain that although many girls aspire to look like the people in the ‘after’ photos, their goal is impossible to achieve because the photos aren’t real.


Talk about how the media gives people false perceptions of ‘beauty.’ Ask questions such as…

  • In the future, will you look at advertisements and magazines the same way?

  • What’s your definition of real beauty?

  • What would you tell someone who is aspiring to look just like the girl on the cover of Vogue Magazine?

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