Another day, another Photoshop scandal.
This time, the victim of the heavy-handed editing, however, is not a woman: It's Justin Bieber.
By now, you've probably seen the super-steamy ads for Calvin Klein's Spring 2015 campaign that feature the mostly-naked musician posing alongside supermodel Lara Stone.
When they were first released on Jan 6, the Internet was abuzz with shock (and, let's be real, joy) at how manly and muscular the Biebs had seemingly become.
But it turns out, he may not be quite as, um, big, as the campaign suggests: Breatheheavy.com got its hands on the original, untouched photos, which reveal a much less endowed and slightly paler Bieber:
When you compare the images side by side, the alterations are incredibly obvious: It seems that not only did the team at Calvin Klein buff up Bieber's abdominal and pectoral muscles, but they also added a lot of junk to his trunk, if you catch my drift.
It also appears as though they added more hair to Bieber's “happy trail,” likely in an attempt to make him appear more mature.
BreatheHeavy made a video highlighting the changes:
The Daily Mail reports the alterations were made as requested by the singer himself, who, according to “a source” involved with the shoot, “specified he wanted to look taller and buff. Bigger bulge implied.”
The 'shop job is interesting not only because of its excess, but because of what it reveals: Women are not the only victims of the pursuit of perfection.
Bieber's body in the original photos is just fine — impressive, even — yet, it was still deemed not good enough to be publicly released in the campaign.
We spend so much time lamenting the media's focus on (and apparent disapproval of) women's bodies, we often forget that men are often made to be victims as well.
Regardless of whether or not Bieber approved of these changes is trivial. What matters is our societal obsession with the perfect body -- a body that can, by definition, never exist.
Perhaps, now that Bieber's original photos have been made public, men too will begin to realize how harmful this obsession with appearances is. And perhaps, finally, we can begin to change how we think (and talk) about our bodies.