Vintage Anorexic Chic

A few weeks ago Ralph Lauren whipped up a bit of a storm with two horrifically photoshopped ad. campaigns (originally reported at Boing Boing and Photoshop Disasters):


This image makes me feel slightly sick whenever I look at it.

An apology was issued:

“For over 42 years we have built a brand based on quality and integrity. After further investigation, we have learned that we are responsible for the poor imaging and retouching that resulted in a very distorted image of a woman’s body. We have addressed the problem and going forward will take every precaution to ensure that the caliber of our artwork represents our brand appropriately.”

Then they promptly went and did it again!


This image is the one they ran.


The one is pre-edit. The model’s not exactly a porker in that one either.

This kind of butchering on the female form is nothing new.  At the moment I’m researching an old photo-news magazine called Picture Post from the late 1930s.


This fabulous advert promises that you can “reduce where you want to reduce”, “without danger or discomfort”, thanks to an “accidental discovery by famous chemists”.  Snake oil perchance?  Here for your viewing pleasure are a couple of close-ups of the miraculous before and after:


In the same magazine was a feature on women of the 1890s.  Remember kids, no photoshop in those days just industrial corsetry:


Breathe in!

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