Beauty Retouching: Always an option, never a requisite

Beauty Retouching: Always an option, never a requisite

The term ‘beauty retouching’ in the photo industry means to take away skin imperfections and create a smooth and even skin texture and tone. At its most complete form, you will see it used in ad campaigns, comparable to any high end brand seen in magazines. I consider minor beauty retouching to be removing blemishes and slight contouring in post production. Most of us, if not all of us, have problems with these things in daily life like temporary blemishes, acne scars, etc.

My philosophy on retouching is that I normally remove temporary blemishes like acne, bruises, darkness around the under eye or, if you haven’t had time to get your eyebrows done, I might take away a few hairs if it is distracting. Occasionally I fix distortion from the lens. I also do a slight facial contour, meaning I darken some areas like the jaw line for separation in the image and highlight some areas to create a subtle contour effect. I like to use image editing software sparingly.

Many people like the fact that they don’t have to worry about having acne or skin blemishes the day of the shoot, as it will be taken care of in post production. That is totally fine. But some people prefer not to have their skin retouched at all, and I also stand by that choice as well. In that case, I don’t retouch the skin but adjust the image for exposure and color corrections and possibly background distractions.

Women in general are bombarded with other people telling us how we should look from a young age. I believe that there is more than one way to be beautiful or attractive. Beauty lies in confidence, vulnerability, joy, self love and numerous other things.

What works for one person won’t work for another. It’s also an extremely personal matter. As a photographer it is my job to make you feel your best. That’s right, feel your best. I want you to be oozing confidence and feeling great after our session.I believe you can only feel your best by being yourself. So be true to yourself and ask for which option makes you feel the most comfortable. There isn’t a right or wrong way, just the best choice for you.

Next week I have an interview with a portrait client about the topic of beauty retouching so stay tuned.

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