Via Kate Bartolotta
on Jun 19, 2012
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Is something invented by Madison Avenue and the creators of Photoshop:

Forever Healthy & Young

For all 60 before and after Photoshop pictures visit Forever Healthy & Young.

To me, the most beautiful people aren’t the ones who are “flawless.”

If you have a life that’s full of laughter—you are going to have wrinkles.

If you play, enjoy and spend time outdoors, you’re going to freckle.

If you live your life passionately, it’s going to show.

If you go through all of those things that carve away the bullshit and leave you raw and excellent and true—you aren’t going to have an expressionless, lineless photoshoppedface.

You will be real.

That’s what makes you beautiful.



About Kate Bartolotta

Kate Bartolotta is a wellness cheerleader, yogini storyteller, and self-care maven.
She also writes for Huffington Post, Yoga International, Mantra Yoga+ Health, a beauty full mind, The Good Men Project, The Green Divas, The Body Project, Project Eve, Thought Catalog and Soulseeds.
Kate’s books are now available on and Barnes &

She is passionate about helping people fall in love with their lives.

You can connect with Kate on Facebook and Instagram.


24 Responses to “Perfection.”

  1. love love love love …. infinity! You know what's funny I really really do think the before looks better…no lie…I like a little character in my faces ya' know?

  2. yogasamurai says:

    You guys are too funny!

    The "before" has tons of make-up, lipstick, lip gloss, eye-shadow, and eye-liner – and there is some cosmetic surgery here, too!

    So what are we actually talking about here exactly? Hmmm?

    Just another case of women (especially) trying to have it both ways, methinks. Welcome to America.

    (Clooney's done some really nice work in the tanning salon).

    • The point in these photos (as per the original source) was that photoshop vs. no photoshop, not no makeup/tan/etc.I think it's interesting to not that even those that society portrays as perfect or beautiful on their own, still don't make the cut when it comes to magazine photos…they still get photoshopped to be a little more flawless. Pretty ridiculous.

    • kim1111 says:

      The remark was a comparison between the before and after shots – which of those two she preferred, that's all.

  3. yogasamurai says:

    Some sites try to humiliate the celebrities not in their usual "get-up." This one seems "fair" – just showing it like it is.….

    Think of how many people would appear "star-like" with so much "work" done on them?

    Obviously, our culture values abstract "beauty" – and other exterior markers – very highly. Women pay enornmous amount of attention to the way a guy dresses – clothese make the man – and grooms, and walks. Shoes? Definitely! "Package"? For many, yes.

    It's been shown that the same women who dress "better" and really make themselves up "better" are more likely to get hired. I've seen studies with the same women at three different levels of "appearance."

    Is this bias – or is there a legitimately perceived relationship between the inner – and the outer? Is the way someone appears also a reflection of self-care, self-esteem, confidence, motivation and ability to "influence" others, etc.

    At what point is it too extreme?

    • True, and I think paying attention to your appearance isn't a bad thing. But I don't think it's a "one size fits all" thing either. I'd guess that women (and men) of different ages, socioeconomic backgrounds, etc. have different ideas about what constitutes being well put together.

      Absolutely, self-care and the way we carry ourselves definitely reflects the inner life, and I have no beef with recognizing attractiveness. I think it's a good thing. I also think it's worth being skeptical about why magazines and advertisers choose to alter photos of people who are already classically good looking. Kind of funny that even those who are already by most standards very attractive still don't make the cut where advertising is concerned.

      • yogasamurai says:

        You mean as opposed to wondering why so many people on a daily basis so radically alter their appearance without any commercial prompting whatsoever? :o)

        If you agree to sit for photos in the fashion industry, you rarely have a choice. But millions of everyday people – especially women, ahem – do. They do it anyway. Peer pressure, work pressure, internalized oppression – whatever.

        But no one agrees on these things really – and no one will? One of my favorite people in El Salvador, fellow reporter, upon arising the next morning (ahem), hit the mirror, and I sat on the edge of the basin sighing.

        "Costume, Stewart, costume."

        "Chicks, Kate, chicks."

        I think the photo-shop issue goes way beyond fashion shoots. We have images of real events and incidents being reconstructed and rearranged to make the "final" image more visually interesting or compelling as "news."

        Again, though, there's always been lots of artifice here with photography – lighting, angle, focus, etc. You can soft focus many things away and also change the entire mood of a person with photography – of the good old fashioned celluloid kind

        And how truthful is any image? Many, many famous photographs long thought to be "spontaneous" – Spanish civil war hand grenade thrower, Doisenau's The Kiss, Iwo Jima, the list is endless – were in fact, COMPLETELY staged.

        Of course, one can argue, though, that all "vision' is "interpretive" – and the perfected image actually condenses something to its core or essence.

        It's an endless debate really – but i don't think focusing on photo-shopping alone is the answer. It's just the latest wrinkle – no pun intended.

        Walter Benjamin's ":The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction" is still the classic critical text here.


        • This is one of the best, most engaged, well thought out responses to photo-shopping articles I've read. Thank you for taking the time to submit it. I don't think photo-shopped images are what we need to be all in a dither about. I honestly don't think our girls look at those images and their psyches are crushed. If they're that fragile something's terribly amiss in their parenting. Our children should not be bothered by something as irrelevant as media and advertising; they should be stronger and more confident than that. Educate your girls (and boys) and you change their attitude. Educate enough of your girls (and boys) and you change the world.

  4. cassandralanesmith says:

    Love this! Thanks, Kate!

  5. Capri says:

    Those people are beautiful in general before and after, they all have really good genes…it wasn't that much of difference. I think that beautiful people can be the not typical looks and of course radiate from inside— but i also see people with really good genes (proportionate, automatically pleasing to the eye,etc) are really beautiful and don't think society trained me that way – i think it's natural. Some people are more beautiful than others, its just the way it is! It's the value we put on it that's out of balance.

    • True, and we all have specific things we find aesthetically appealing. It's unfortunate that we feel the need to alter the photos of people who already have great genes and are classically beautiful to make them more "flawless." Where does it end?

  6. uma simon says:

    I like how you put this all together. Very good.

  7. […] worth having a look. It made me think…and it made me write […]

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  9. patri says:

    they were pretty great before as well…

  10. […] you can take perfect and shove it. Because I got tired of perfect. There’s no art in perfect. Perfect has to be defended, like ramparts, with arrows and spears, and I got tired of staring […]

  11. Joshua says:

    Real life sexy is soooo much more about how you FEEL than how you look. Be the person you feel good about and you will RADIATE beauty! Thanks for the reminder my compassionate friend. If you ever need help naming the constellations in your freckles let me know…

  12. Lori Bell says:

    This is a great piece by Craig Ferguson on the topic of the "Deification of Youth" via marketing agencies and modern media:

    Good for a laugh as well as making a lot of sense, at least to me.

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