Anna Gragert
March 30, 2016 11:05 am

Ashley Graham has continued to make history and win our hearts over in the process. She’s gifted us all an extremely inspiring, body-positive TED talk. Graham became the first, size-16 model to land the Sport’s Illustrated swimsuit cover. And she’s continued to break down barriers as Maxim‘s first, plus-size cover girl.

But even so, many are not happy with Ashley’s Maxim-related accomplishment, according to Mic. The reason: alleged Photoshopping.

Though there’s no official word on whether or not it’s true, many commenters were quick to voice their concerns about any retouching that was possibly performed:

One user managed to get the cover’s photographer, Gilles Bensimon, to respond to their complaints:

Based on Bensimon’s response, it seems that Graham’s body was not altered. Yet, onlookers still feel as though the cover isn’t representing the diversity of the female form. They feel as though the Maxim cover isn’t in line with Ashley’s own statements regarding representation and body positivity.

“I believe in a little bit [of Photoshop], but when you’re reconstructing my body, when you’re reshaping my hips and my thighs and you’re taking certain cellulite away — Hello! I talk about it! I got cellulite. It’s like, don’t do that, because the customer realizes and the girl who follows me realizes it’s just overdone,” Ashley told Entertainment Tonight. “There is a tasteful way to do it.”

Though the photographer has given his perspective on the matter, we’re still interested in hearing what Graham has to say about these cover shot complaints.

Update (March 30th, 3pm): We were made aware that Ashley Graham recently replied to the comments about her cover being Photoshopped. Here’s what she had to say:

“I’m beyond proud to be the first curvy woman on the cover of Maxim. I was not slimmed down on the cover, and Gilles Bensimon did an amazing job capturing my true figure in all of the photos. This is another major advancement for curvy women, especially those who work in the fashion industry who are working hard to get the recognition they deserve. I now encourage  more publications and designers to put more diversity on their covers and runways. Let’s continue to show that beautiful bodies come in different sizes and they should all be celebrated.” 

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