Everyone has their unique opinion on what qualifies as ethical personal representation. Some believe wearing cosmetics is lying, because it presents a person in their non-natural state. Others view makeup as a useful tool that enhances someone’s aesthetics similar to clothing, hairstyle, and jewelry.

Makeup is reality, but it is modified reality. It cannot be generated with the swipe of a button. Cosmetics have “wear and tear” just like any other ephemeral component. The vast majority of us have grown up seeing people with and without makeup, allowing us to develop intuition for when a person is in either state. Without the intuitive sense of when a filter is being used and how it may be affecting the photograph, it’s easier to assume that the person in the photograph is much more attractive than they actually are.

Photos are digital. You can only appear filtered on the internet. There isn’t a digital version of yourself that can transfer into the real world.

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