What Beyoncé Looks Like Without Photoshop

The unretouched photo is shocking.

beyonce getty images

Beyoncé is flawless (err, ***Flawless). That's pretty much a given.

But Beyoncé is also human, so like the rest of us, when exposed to harsh lighting and heavy makeup, she looks slightly less than perfect, which is why people went absolutely crazy when unretouched photos of Queen Bey surfaced in 2015 from a 2013 L'Oréal ad.

Here's the original commercial in which Beyoncé slays you with her beauty, but assures you that you're worth it, too:


As usual, Beyoncé is classy, beautiful and somehow still relatable. And that's infuriating to some, who think the photos prove anything beyond what most people with common sense already know: Advertisers like airbrushing things.

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But these are unretouched Beyoncé pictures from the L'Oréal shoot where she looks like any other woman would when posing under insanely large, bright lights and wearing what amounts to stage makeup.

Because that's exactly what it is!

Anyone who's done a photoshoot will tell you that you need to wear a lot more color to define your face and avoid looking washed out from the lights, which can otherwise make you a giant blur without any features. Take it from someone who's been there, albeit on a much smaller scale.

Of course, Twitter had their own opinions. One user wrote, "I don't care for Beyoncé but I'm glad those pictures leaked. She's an actual person & it's deceiving of the media to retouch for perfection."

Others thought the photos were doctored in some way. Another user wrote in a now-deleted tweet, "I have seen Beyoncé in person. What she looks like in pictures is what she looks like in real life. Those 'leaked' pictures are fake." 


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A post shared by Belleza para llevar (@bellezaparallevar) on Feb 20, 2015 at 2:32pm PST

Fan website The Beyonce World had to remove the photos after just an hour of putting them up, due to all the backlash.


They posted a statement on their site, writing, "Due to the disdain of the BeyHive, we have removed the photos. We don't want to cause any drama, nor do we wish to start fan wars.

Some of the things we have seen posted were just horrible, and we don't want any parts of it. We were just posting the photos to share the fact that our queen is naturally beautiful, at the same time she is just a regular woman."

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However, I have a few issues with these allegedly unretouched photos of Beyoncé. 

First, why were the pictures leaked two years later? These pictures are from 2013!


Maybe the Cindy Crawford unretouched pictures had been starting a trend for rogue photogs with stuff on their hard drives who were looking for a quick buck to leak them. Who knows?

Second, as someone who's not only been professionally photographed, but as someone who also looks at and edits candid paparazzi photos all day, including plenty of photos of Beyoncé, I'm a little dumbfounded by these.

In no candid photos of her that I've seen does her skin look remotely close to this. There are barely any lines and never any blemishes.

I'm likely to believe that someone with too much time on his or her hands upped the contrast to make whatever flaws she does have stand out, as well as maybe adding a few that weren't there in the first place.


Third, who cares? If you don't know by now that magazines, especially ads within them, use Photoshop and a slew of editing tools to make celebrities look better, I honestly don't know how to help you.

If it makes you feel better to see other people who look worse, that's an issue you need to take up with yourself and your therapist, because you're insecure.

Own it and work on it. You know, when you're not busy filtering your own Instagram selfies into oblivion.

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Jessica Sager is a writer, editor and comic based in NYC who covers entertiainment and news.