Back in 2016, Kerry Washington posed for the cover of a publication but when she saw the image, she didn’t recognize the person in the photo.
Washington took it to Instagram to share her thoughts.
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So…You know me. I'm not one to be quiet about a magazine cover. I always celebrate it when a respected publication invites me to grace their pages. It's an honor. And a privilege. And ADWEEK is no exception. I love ADWEEK. It's a publication I appreciate. And learn from. I've long followed them on Twitter. And when they invited me to do a cover, I was excited and thrilled. And the truth is, I'm still excited. I'm proud of the article. And I like some of the inside images a great deal. But, I have to be honest…I was taken aback by the cover. Look, I'm no stranger to Photoshopping. It happens a lot. In a way, we have become a society of picture adjusters – who doesn't love a filter?!? And I don't always take these adjustments to task but I have had the opportunity to address the impact of my altered image in the past and I think it's a valuable conversation. Yesterday, however, I just felt weary. It felt strange to look at a picture of myself that is so different from what I look like when I look in the mirror. It's an unfortunate feeling. That being said. You all have been very kind and supportive. Also, as I've said, I'm very proud of the article. There are a few things we discussed in the interview that were left out. Things that are important to me (like: the importance of strong professional support and my awesome professional team) and I've been thinking about how to discuss those things with anyone who is interested, in an alternate forum. But until then…Grab this week's ADWEEK. Read it. I hope you enjoy it. And thank you for being patient with me while I figured out how to post this in a way that felt both celebratory and honest. XOXOXOX
Since then, Kerry has been aware of all the digital alterations that can be done, even if it’s without your permission. In an official statement to Refinery29, Washington says, “I have hands-on experience of seeing a picture of myself where somebody else decided that I should have a differently-shaped face than what I have because that would be better.”
She added, “It was such a confusing and disorienting experience.”
Now, in a new campaign, Kerry Washington showcases a minimal makeup look and we couldn’t be more obsessed. Now, it’s a given that Kerry Washington is beautiful with or without makeup but it sure does open our eyes in realizing that digital altering isn’t all as necessary as we may think it is.
Last year, we learned about CVS’ Beauty Mark Initiative which is a commitment to having stricter guidelines when it comes to Photoshop for all imagery dealing with CVS, that means their website, in stores, e-mails, social media, you name it!
The beloved drugstore brand is also aiming to have disclaimers on all of their imagery by 2020! You will now see CVS’ images with a watermark to indicate whether it has been digitally altered or not.
Kerry Washington’s Photoshop-less image used for Neutrogena’s campaign is an example in which we hope that major brands will also get on board!
In addition to Kerry Washington, Brand ambassadors featured in Beauty Unaltered campaigns include Ayesha Curry for CoverGirl and Ashley Graham for Revlon.
Let us know your thoughts on this new outlook on beauty in the comments below!
Featured Image: Shutterstock