Even babies can't meet the media-industrial complex's exacting standards: Baby photos are airbrushed before making their way to magazines, to tweak skin tone, swap eye color, and airbrush fat lines and creases, reports the Daily Telegraph. While many are riled, to some, this is not news: "You kind of know that they do it because if you look at the front cover of magazines, most of the images don't look really real," notes the mom of a child model.
Most magazines and catalogs had excuses. Said one editor, "Babies are not like adults you can't stop them from dribbling, so you might remove that bit of dribble from the chin. Or if the baby has just been crying, and their eyes are red, we might lighten the eyes." A photo retoucher, when asked about removing fat rolls, raised more existential concerns: "This sounds like very dangerous territory. You will have parents thinking, my baby isn't attractive enough, how do I make my baby more attractive?"