While trawling the net, as I do well... for a living... I came across quite a startling find. On Bliss magazine's website (a rag for British teenage girls) you can now download 'Airbrush Me' a software that allows you to airbrush photos of yourself or, even worse - they'll do it for you. Further digging found that it is also available on the New Woman magazine website. Now while, I can kind of see how (although I'm still unsure as to why) this type of gimmicky advertisement could be found on a women's website, I'm rather appalled to see it being promoted on a website designed for teens. I wonder, what sort of message can this be sending out to young, impressionable women?
Following the outcry over Kate Winslet's cover for Vogue and whether or not it had been airbrushed, I'm even more baffled as to why a website/magazine created for teenage girls would deliberately market a product that outwardly advocates it. Correct me if I'm wrong, but this can't be helping our battle against what the media considers beautiful. After all, I'm sure we've all had the odd crap photo taken of ourselves and so what?
Perhaps what I find even more worrying is the option Bliss has for readers to send in their own photos and for the price of a £2 text message they will do the airbrushing for you. "We'll give you a celebrity makeover," promises the site.
On the other hand, I could be wrong. Maybe it's all just a bit of fun and no different to those portrait photography studios that produce retouched photos as a profession. It's certainly no secret that magazine models aren't left as they were when originally photographed for the final print. So then why does it just not sit right with me? Is this an over-reaction on my behalf? Seeing as it's Yay or Nay Wednesday, I'm turning the tables over to you guys...
Is airbrushing software suitable for a women's/teenage website or is it just a bit of harmless fun?