Thursday, 25 October 2012

Airbrush Or Not To Airbrush?

After the #BBLOGGERS chat last night I was inspired to write this post. I had asked the question whether it is acceptable for a blogger to airbrush their pictures and I got lots of comments with very different opinions.

If you are a beauty blogger, do you feel the pressure to make your skin and make up look perfect in a picture? After all you are putting yourself out there as a `beauty guru’ whether you intend to or not. I know I do, after taking pictures for what seems like hours and then uploading them only to find the horrors of my close up face, I immediately want to whip out the paintbrush.

You start to question, how do other bloggers do it? Is my skin really that bad in comparison? And then at the end of it you’re so disheartened you don’t even bother adding any to your blog.

Or do you? Do you in fact get your little digital concealer out and touch up those bits? no one will ever know if I got rid of that spot and that large pore oh and that dodgy crease, while I am there I wonder what my face would look like thinner...................

It’s a vicious cycle; once you start surely there is no going back? But hey, what’s wrong with wanting to look your best? After all your blog is a showcase and it’s OK to portray yourself the best you can?

Celebs are well known for this (well the media anyway) and they too just want to look the best they can, but does it go too far?

Below is my version of airbrushing, pic 1 is with airbrushing and pic 2 is without. Notice what I have done here? I have got rid of those pesky large pores and changed the lighting slightly.

Now to me pic 1 is sooo much better as my skin looks great! However I do feel like a little bit of a cheat, especially if I am referring to products I have used.

Personally, I do not think airbrushing should be used for review posts full stop, it would not be a true representation of the product. However I can’t help but feel little tweaks are not so bad, if you love a pic but there is one little blemish is it OK to zap it?

On the other hand we are all human, and guess what? We ALL have spots, pores, wrinkles, dry patches etc so what’s the problem? You could say that wearing make up is cheating so how far do you go? however there is no way I would do a close up bare face shot, hell no!

So what are your views on this?


  1. How interesting! I don't ues air brushing, I probably would if I had a blemish but usually I tend to just leave my photos as is - mostly out of laziness haha!
    I really dont care if people air brush their photos a bit, like how you did. You still look like you and you just wanted to refine your photo a bit more. I think sometimes photos can highlight things we dont even really see in person so to alter the photo to what you really look like makes sense to me.
    I do think some of those celebrity photos are a tad extreme, they were made so incredibly flawless that it doesn't really leave any of what was really them in the photo. When it gets to that point I think it's a bit false advertising, like selling mascara while wearing fake eyelashes - celebs shouldn't be selling makeup with those photos, they should be selling photoshop haha!

    xoxo Bree
    The Urban Umbrella

  2. I definitely think that your photos are reasonably edited. However, celebrities and the media shouldn't still be misleading the public, with these unrealistic images. Is the Kate Moss photo real? Because the change between the two is frightfully drastic.
    It all needs to be used in the right amounts


  3. I really don't like the idea of airbrushing especially when you are doing a review of the product and showing it in action. I know I look like the unfortunate sister of Shrek close up, that's why I wear makeup haha, so I understand the temptation to do it. I just this airbrushing in general creates unrealistic expectation. How on earth are we supposed to aspire to look as good as celebs when even they don't look as good as their pictures?! For the record I think you look fab in the non airbrushed picture :)

  4. I think this is a great topic. Sometimes I edit out a huge spot but when being a beauty blogger it is hard to show the products true reflection when the photo is airbrushed. I remember at the beginning of the year I post up a picture of my hugely spotty chin and there was no editing then I showed how it looked when I covered it up with the MUA concealer. People were so shocked that I showed the before unedited picture saying that I was "brave". I didn't feel brave it just gave a true reflection on how this product work.
    A little editing is okay but as heavy as the celebrities is misleading and makes people think thats how they have to look. Photoshop aren't selling make-up as of yet either :)

  5. That´s a great post.I think it depends on how much someone uses airbrush.
    And yes,we all have spots etc. it is just normal ;)
    Join my blog birthday giveaway: xx

  6. This is a really good post :) I think airbrushing to a small extent is okay, to get rid of a big spot (or for me touch up my dodgy hands) haha. But no where near the extend celebs do it. If your writing a blog and promoting beauty for others to real you need to give a fair and accurate representation of what the products actually do and look like, not just make-up reviews but also just to see what how the skin care you use actually effects your skin over time. :) Theres so many perfect faces going around in the media that real people need a place where we can see other real people and i think blogs can be that place.

    Lorna xxx

  7. I am definitely against air brushing for product reviews. It just won't be fair for the eyes of the readers in my opinion :)

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  8. I think it depends what i'm showing with the photos, If i'm blogging about a lipstick, I dont think its bad to retouch the skin because its not what i'm talking about and I don't really think its a bad thing to want to have less distractions around what you're trying to show. :)

  9. I definitely think when it comes to skin products like foundation, bloggers shouldn't airbrush - otherwise it gives a false perspective of the product! I'm defintely guilty of retouching a spot here and there if I'm reviewing lip or eye products and it's in the picture, but I definitely don't think the area of focus should be retouched in reviews!

  10. I never use my face for advertising foundation or blushers etc. All swatches are done on my arm only. I don't believe in airbrushing at all so if i recommend a foundation it will be swatched on my arm, which is full of freckles and it will show how good the coverage is, as will cover freckles.
    I think the more annoying thing to me is, people writing bad blogs on products and have done no research to back themselves up.(The famous one doing the rounds at the moment is Chanel vitalumiere aqua is the same as Bourjois healthy mix serum foundation) A blogger tried to say same product different packaging, when i asked them for ingredients list, they had none. If you check, you will see no comparison whatsoever, so i asked what was their basis for research, they said other bloggers had said same thing. LOL. That's very annoying. Some bloggers do it because they may favour a certain brand over another or because they get samples of that particular brand fro PR firms. That's blag blogging and i love flushing them out. Serves them right though. So really, i think air brushing is not as major as making claims with no foundation, pardon the pun! But if you do use your face, keep it real and let everyone see the real products ability.

  11. This is a great post! I think minor airbrushing isn't a problem- like u have done above - as long as u don't airbrush the area of the product. Like if ur reviewing a concealer don't airbrush that area and make it look amazing as ur readers will misjudge that to be an amazing concealer! Also, remember that people are reading blogs for honest advice and reviews from REAL people. If they wanted perfect looking girls and pictures they'd refer to an advert... Besides, u don't need to worry! U look amazing in the unedited pic ;) xx

  12. Such a great post! I would hope that those bloggers who review foundations and other face products wouldn't airbrush their photos - would definitely come across as deceiving, plus I think the purpose of reviews is to show the product in its natural state. I personally wouldn't do it (and haven't), although in a couple of earlier FOTD posts I may have zapped a huge zit...nothing major though lol

  13. Great post!! If you didn't tell me you airbrushed, I wouldn't have thought anything of it. I think that people can be really critical of their own appearance (myself included) so I am really picky about the pictures I select to share. I think lighting is really important. I have had some instances of horrid mascara flaking off on to my cheeks that I didn't notice while photographing my makeup, and I had no problem erasing that mess! Otherwise, I say just be you. Do what makes you feel the most comfortable (within reason!!) while presenting yourself to the world. Honesty is the best policy, and I have no problem putting photos up of me without makeup on, and completely broken out. It's on my blog.

  14. the only celeb who looks better with the airbrushing is kate moss. Though Penelope Cruz does need the bags taken care of. I don't mind a little airbrushing to soften or remove skin imperfections (like a massive zit or discolouration) but magazines take it to far and make almost every celeb look alien!!

  15. Omg Kate Moss looked completely different to how we see her promoting Rimmel. Personally i don't mind adjusting the lighting for any pictures of my self as long as i'm not reviewing any of the products that i am wearing. I like to change my personal pictures, as i'm currently unwell and i know i don't look as good as i can be by changing the lighting or adding a filter / effect i feel much better, all though adjusting personal pics never used to bother me and til i became unwell.

    Such a great post! :)

  16. Great post Kimmi! I agree with you, I don't think anyone should airbrush their pictures, especially as it makes loads of girls feel even more selfconsious. Sometimes I don't even notice pictures are airbrushed and just believe people are blessed with amazing skin and get all sad but as you said, everyone has pores and spots whatsoever. I know it's hard to put pictures of yourself on the internet with all those little imperfections but to me this makes people much more likeable and I wouldn't really trust someone with their reviews when they have airbrushed pictures. Your second picture is just as gorgeous as the edited one btw :) xx


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