Mollie Hawkins
January 27, 2015 1:23 pm

Magazines are regularly called out for their weird Photoshopping decisions, and for removing so-called “flaws” to render natural beauty virtually unrecognizable. It’s a blow to readers confronting unreasonable beauty standards, and in the case of the latest retouching fail, it’s just bad, bad, bad for everyone involved. In the February issue of Australia’s Woman’s Day magazine, the naturally great-looking Kate Middleton is given a majorly bizarre makeover—complete with heavy, fake makeup and a cartoonish earring sparkle.

On the right, we see the original photo of the Duchess making an appearance at the opening of the Kensington Leisure Centre in London. On the left, we see, well, all the weirdness.

So what happened here? According to Sydney Morning Herald Photo Editor Daniel Adams, the hand of Photoshop decided to “make her sparkle,” he says, “but it’s given her a really hard look; it does not look normal.” And not only did they pull the warmth out of her cheeks, they also decided to make her earrings extra shimmery. Adams claims the sharpened skin tones make Middleton appear wrinkly and cold, and he calls it all “completely unnecessary.”

Agreed. This is Photoshopping at its worst, but it’s also a good moment to point out that Photoshopping women’s faces, in general, just isn’t necessary. Natural beauty is way more appealing than fabricated notions of what’s attractive.

This isn’t the first time Middleton has fallen victim to Photoshop fail. In 2012, Marie Claire South Africa completely constructed a fake image of the Duchess for its cover. (They called it “fan art.”) Then, last year we were pretty shocked to find out that US Weekly decided to “touch up” a photo of then-9-month-old Prince George. We that know sometimes babies miss their nap times, but come on, guys!

When will the gratuitous (and sometimes bizarre) Photoshopping end? We think it’s time to stage an intervention. Use your tech powers for good, folks! It’s okay to let people look like themselves.

[Images via hereherehere]