A new camera has come out that automatically retouches the photo as you take it. Now you can do at home what we is done in magazines and on billboards without buying expensive software. In fact it is built in to the camera to whiten teeth, remove wrinkles and improve skin tone.

Sure, sounds fun to play around with. But what does that really do to our image of others and of ourselves? Is it really great for us all to be living a “lie” in taking retouched pictures of ourselves and others?

Nicole Ritchie and her new baby

Maybe its because pictures of ourselves have become more public than ever through things like Facebook. Who knows who will post a “real life” picture of you for all to see, when the next item in the news feed could be a picture of an airbrushed posed celebrity. We get it into our heads that we need to change ourselves to look the same.

As a mother of two, and having recently been pregnant I’m definately aware of my body and its “flaws”. Despite knowing it isn’t reality when you see celebrities who have just had babies who are back to their pre-baby (or thinner) bodies. Even though I know that they have trainers and nannies and all that, I think that there is so much pressure to look like you haven’t had a baby really quickly. To be a “yummy mummy”.I had my first baby when I was nearly 23, and honestly some part of me makes me feel guilty that I haven’t gone back to looking like I was when I was 22. 13 weeks after having my second baby I still have a “pregnant belly” and to be honest it is probably going to be a there for a while, even with healthy eating and exercise.
Mums are made to feel that getting their figure back is just as (if not more) important as looking after and enjoying their baby. And having a new baby can be a stressful time as it is without having to focus on that too.

Me 12 weeks after having my baby

A poll by website Mumsnet.com found that less than a quarter of the women surveyed were content with their appearance, with a half of those polled declaring themselves actively ‘unhappy’. Women described themselves as “disgusting” and cried when they looked in the mirror. I myself have moments when I think “what has happened to me?” and wonder how I can get back to what I was (or better).

We couldn’t get through that incredibly miraculous process without a few “battlescars”. Scars of the sacrifice and changes it requires to get through all that – the stretchmarks, scars, lumps and bumps. How boring would the world be (and how much effort would it be!) for us all to look “perfect”? Where would our life experience be shown? Living life makes marks on us. What would you be without the scar that you got when you fell off your bike, the freckles you got that summer you spent every day for a month on the beach, the stretchmarks and extra weight around the hips and tummy from having your precious child or the wrinkles showing years of living a long life?

Our bodies are the only thing that will go with us all the way through life. So why feel bad about them?