Most photos you see in ads often look too good and too perfect. Sometimes, that’s a result of some pretty amazing photography. Other times, that’s a product of “enhanced post-production,” which I think is just some fancy wording for Photoshop.
There are times when photoshopping stuff is okay and preferred. But when it comes to ads, it’s generally not, specifically when it’s for ads for cosmetic products. The reason is simple: when a woman looks at the ad and sees the model with some amazingly full lashes, she’ll expect the same thing when she uses the actual product herself. But because the model’s lashes are just enhanced care of Photoshop, she’ll probably never be able to achieve the effect she saw in the ad and will be one dissatisfied customer.
In this sense, the ad becomes misleading. This sort of thing is generally not tolerated in the States, which is why the National Advertising Division (NAD) has banned a CoverGirl mascara ad. This followed after Procter & Gamble admitted to using Photoshop to make the lashes on the model appear thicker than they were in real life.
Although that fact was disclosed on the ad itself, NAD director Andrea Levine said: “You can’t use a photograph to demonstrate how a cosmetic will look after it is applied to a woman’s face and then – in the mice type – have a disclosure that says ‘okay, not really.'”
The ad was for the CoverGirl NatureLuxe Mousse Mascara, which promised “2x more volume” once applied on a woman’s lashes.