Imagined Beauties

"Photoshopped women who don't really exist..."  The words stung as I read them.  They stung because although I know that the images that I see on the cover of People and Essence aren't real, I am tempted to believe that they are, and worse—to want to look like them.  But the images are altered, crafted for hours to perfection or near perfection.  

I know firsthand the power of Photoshop.  With the click of a mouse, a pimple can disappear and a nose can suddenly appear more defined.  Cheekbones can protrude, and eyelashes can pop.

So today, I will show some images of myself—some natural, some retouched, and others completely untouched, but with make-up. What is real? What's been altered?  Can you guess?

 Photo 1

Photo 2

Photo 3

Photo 4

 Photo 5

 Photo 6

Answer Key:

Photo 1: Make-up, Un-retouched

Photo 2:  No Make-up, Un-retouched

Photo 3:  Make-up, Un-retouched

Photo 4:  Make-up, Retouched

Photo 5:  Make-up, Un-retouched

Photo 6:  Make-up, Retouched