Real beauty doesn’t require makeup or Photoshop according to French Elle

I know, I know, another magazine post, but I had to write about this one.  I was actually gearing up to write another beauty post about beauty and pampering products I’ve been into lately, when I saw a link to an article posted on Twitter from Yahoo’s Shine Fashion and Beauty Blog about French Elle’s May 2009 “No Makeup” issue.


Images from Shine at Yahoo

That’s right, Eva Herzigova, Monica Bellucci, Sophie Marceau, Charlotte Rampling appear in French Elle with no makeup or Photoshopping.   It’s shot by Peter Lindbergh and the women are already completely gorgeous as is, but I still say it’s a refreshing view from the insanely airbrushed covers on US stands.

And to quote, Shine’s author, Jennifer Romolini, it’s once again a sign that the European mags have taken steps leaps and bounds ahead of their US counterparts:

And, honestly, French Elle’s April ’09 issue is not the first time our women’s mags have been out-classed by the Europeans. Last year–in protest of the serious lack of diversity on catwalks, ads and in women’s magazines–Italian Vogue published an all-black issue featuring models of color from around the world. It sold out in days.

Amen.  Let’s also not forget Paris Vogue’s cover with a Black male dressed in woman’s clothes and he was working a full beard.

But I digress.   Would women be open to seeing  beauty represented at face value without all of the tricks and manipulation?  Or is the escapism and fantasy that we may feel when we look at a dolled up model/actress what we want to see, because hey, it is Elle/Vogue/Bazaar, ya know.


7 responses to “Real beauty doesn’t require makeup or Photoshop according to French Elle

  1. Yeah, these magazine covers have been getting a lot of attention in France. I love the idea and I’m sure others do to, but if these were the covers all magazines would start producing on a permanent basis, I doubt women would want to buy them in the long-run. Anything that gets put out there (whether it’s ads, movies or tv shows) is meant to be aspirational and too many people still crave to look ‘better’ or attain something they can’t have.

    I guess it’s like so many people loving the Dove campaigns but at the same time many people being turned off the actual product, because the models weren’t typically ‘perfect’.

    Thanks for posting this 🙂

  2. The Monica Belluci cover is my fav, she’s so gorgeous.

  3. Really great idea for a covershoot, and yes, they still look beautiful, even though they aren’t wearing any make-up (or have been Photoshopped). Love it!

  4. I think it’s a great idea. The overall perception of beauty is getting so twisted out of proportion, everyone is trying to enhance themselves in some way because ‘natural’ doesn’t cut it. This ‘back to the roots’ of things is something I very much like. Escapism is great, but reality (as subjective as it is) is more important to get a firm grip of.

  5. I love this, I love the idea of supporting real beauty instead of fake, photoshopped robots. These women all look gorgeous!

  6. So inspiring! I wish I looked like any of them without make up! x

  7. Great idea! I love it, but while I would like to see more natural beauty, I think there is also a place for the escapism and fantasy…just without the photoshopping / airbrush madness.

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