Bustle

We’ve already seen two journalists—one Caucasian and one biracial—go on a Photoshop trip around the world this year; but style blogger Marie Southard Ospina wanted to give it a new twist.

December 18, 2014

We’ve already seen two journalists—one Caucasian and one biracial—go on a Photoshop trip around the world this year; but style blogger Marie Southard Ospina wanted to give it a new twist. So she also asked strangers from 18 different countries to Photoshop her barefaced portrait to make her beautiful (whatever that meant to them). The difference is, she’s plus-sized.

Ospina went into the experiment expecting to get dramatically retouched and slimmed-down images in return, but instead she was pleasantly surprised to find that in most cases, the photo editors only made minor changes. (Below are select examples; head to Bustle to see all 21 photos.)

Clockwise from top left: Italy, Macedonia, India, Ukraine

“I pretty much assumed that the majority of the editors would quite drastically change my bone structure and weight,” she wrote on Bustle. “But for the most part, I was actually pretty surprised to see how much I still look like myself in the vast majority of these photos.”

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Ospina thinks that just three countries—Ukraine, Mexico, and Latvia—made her look drastically thinner. And it was Latvia’s interpretation that struck her the most. “It wasn’t just that I was slimmed down—I expected that much,” she told People. “But it was the extent of it. If you look at it closely, I honestly look emaciated.”

Ultimately, Ospina is pleased with the results, and hopes that the minimal changes she saw in the photos signal a shift in favor of natural beauty.

“I, for one, would be greatly pleased if this was the case,” she wrote on Bustle. “Because I’ve always wanted to live in a society in which freckles and moles and double chins and natural wrinkles were embraced, rather than hidden away and caked in foundation.”

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