Photoshop Creating a Reverse Dorian Gray Syndrome: Our Pictures Don’t Age But We Do

A recent Photoshopped picture of Duchess Catherine aka Kate Middleton caught my attention.  For some reason, the folks at Grazia decided that Kate’s already extraordinarily tiny waste wasn’t quite tiny enough, so they Photoshopped it to unnatural and humanly unattainable dimensions.

Photoshop has been used to make people look better in their pictures than they may look in real life.  This process has created what can be considered a reverse Dorian Gray Syndrome.  For those of you unfamiliar with Dorian Gray, it is a story by Oliver Wilde where a young man was so obsessed with remaining youthful that he was willing to sell his soul for it.  The deal he makes ensures that a portrait created of him would age but he would not. 

Today’s photographers commonly Photoshop our pictures to make us look better.  The photo used on this site has had some work done to it.  In fact, we are so used to seeing Photoshopped pictures that when we see the actual person in real life, it can be a letdown. 

Is Photoshop making us have unrealistic expectations of what we should look like?  Many people see these pictures and believe that Middleton’s12-inch waste is possible.  How much Photoshopping is too much?  Are we a reverse Dorian Gray society where we show up looking old and weathered while our picture remains perfect?  It’s not just Hollywood or rag magazines doing this.  I have known a  lot of people who have posted less than accurate pictures of themselves on dating sites.   This eventually has to catch up with us.  I imagine there has been a few surprised customers who eagerly awaited to see their date, only to find that they don’t quite get what they expected.