This week, the New York Times explores compulsive Photoshopping, speculating about whether it'll ever go away (probably not), how the mag world got where it is (started back in the '30s, dear) and why we keep complaining about it but not doing anything to change the practise.
If you believe Cindi Leive, editor of US Glamour, then it seems that the global recession has people sick of fake-looking cover images. "Fashion magazines are always about some element of fantasy," she says, "but what I'm hearing from readers lately is that in fashion, as in every other part of our lives right now, there is a hunger for authenticity. Artifice, in general, feels very five years ago."
So if people are wanting genuine, where is it? As an average-sized woman, I don't look like Gwyneth Paltrow on the cover of Vogue, but Beth Ditto on Love isn't me either. For most of us who lie in the middle (like some celebrities, who can have their cellulite and jiggles airbrushed out), we're still waiting.