The Problem With Airbrushing Kim Kardashian


Complex magazine has a photoshoot with Kim Kardashian coming up and Animal New York has a before and after airbrushing shot from the spread,

Kim Kardashian Airbrushed

Now, it’s tempting to look at this, say “so what,” and just move on — but, the practice of airbrushing women in magazines actually has real ramifications.

Take this pic of Kim Kardashian, for example. Opinions do vary — and that’s not a particularly flattering pic of her — but I think Kim Kardashian is one of the most beautiful women I’ve ever seen.

Yet, in that pic they made her hips a little smaller, her skin tone more uniform, and her breasts, more symmetrical.

Now imagine you’re the average woman trying to compete with that. You’re not even competing with a stunningly attractive woman: you’re competing with an idealized version of a stunningly attractive woman. How much damage must it do to even gorgeous women to see these images and know that they can’t possibly measure up to the women they see in these magazines?

On the other hand, if you’re a guy looking at the airbrushed shots and thinking, “Wow, that is what hot looks like,” you’re being suckered because no woman, not even the woman pictured in the photo, is that perfect in real life.

In other words, these photos set an unrealistic standard for beauty that no human being can possible meet and yet, because it’s supposed to be a picture of a real person, it gives people a false impression.

I wonder how many women end up having plastic surgery in an effort to sculpt their features into a vision they have of a woman who has never existed anywhere except on the cover of a magazine? I wonder how many men passed up exceptional women because they came across rather common minor flaws in a woman’s physique that they believed were uncommon because they’ve never seen them in a magazine shoot?

That’s not to say these airbrushed shoots are helping to lead to demographic disasters we’ve seen across much of the Western world, but they are one factor out of many that’s helping deteriorate the bond between the sexes and we would be better off as a society if magazines stopped photoshopping already beautiful women into perfect Greek goddesses.