In recent years, people have been starting to assess the validity of beauty and fashion advertisements. These advertisements depict flawless celebrities or models with a company’s product. This is done through the use of Photoshop, a computer program that can alter a person’s features. Some examples of Photoshop uses are to erase acne, get rid of unwanted fat, and make the eyes of an endorser wider. However, are these advertisements deceiving the consumer into believing that he or she can achieve perfection?
According to CNN, Julia Bluhm has made it her mission to get a popular teen magazine, Seventeen Magazine, to stop using this editing program for it’s advertisements. Even though Seventeen Magazine is adamant about not using Photoshop, will other magazines follow? Additionally, will regulations be made stop companies from using it at all? In other countries such as France and Israel, this push for regulation has already begun. In France, a mother of two is pushing a bill through Parliament to limit the use of Photoshop because of the negative effects that it has on young girls. Further, Israel has already passed a law that states that if a company is using Photoshop that it must state clearly on the advertisement that the image has been altered. Will the United States be the next to follow suit?
The National Advertising Division has recognized the need for regulation. However, NAD wants the companies to regulate themselves with the use of Photoshop. However, will self-regulation work? At the moment, companies such as Dove are pioneering this concept with their Real Beauty Campaign by using real women in its advertisement without the use of Photoshop. Thus, the consumer can decide if he or she would rather buy from a company that promotes real women or Photoshopped versions of models. This may lead to the self-regulation that NAD is pushing for because other companies will then follow suit in order to stay competitive in the market. Time will tell if this works, or if an Israel type law is needed to protect the consumer from deceitful practices.