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Before and After: A Woman's Photoshop Project Showcases Beauty Standards of 25 Different Countries

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By Ma Evelyn Castino Quilas | June 27, 2014 3:41 PM EST

"Beauty is in the eye of the beholder." This adage holds some truth to the "Before and After" Photoshop project conducted by the journalist, blogger and freelancing reporter for KCUR Esther Honig.

She conducted an international experiment to examine how beauty standards vary across culture on a global scale. In her experiment, Honig asked various individuals from different countries to have an untouched image of her face enhanced using Photoshop. The results showed astonishing revelations at how 25 different countries have different ideal standards of beauty.

According to her blog, Honig's freelance job introduced her to the platform Fiverr. This gave her the opportunity to come in contact with almost 40 individuals from over 25 countries all over the globe such as Sri Lanka, Ukraine, The Philippines and Kenya. Some of the individuals she came in contact with were already experts in their field while others were amateurs.

Honig narrated to E! Online that she sent messages to the various freelancers across the world. She included a close-up picture of her face with the following request: "Hi my name is Esther Honig and I would like you to enhance this image using Photoshop. I trust you to take whatever steps you see necessary. Make me look beautiful."

The blogger paid each individual from $5 to $30 with the hope that each one will enhance the unaltered image based from their personal and cultural experiences. And the results were truly astonishing!

Honig explained each photo editor drew from a palate of both their cultural influence and their aesthetic preference. Even two images coming from the same country revealed different results.

For instance, a photograph edited from Morocco showed Honig in djellaba attire resembling a Muslim woman. While a photograph from the Philippines showed the reporter in long, flowing hair with bold lips. Another photograph edited from India showed her with wide, dark eyebrows. But her picture from the United States showed the journalist in a totally new blue eye colour with a side-swept hairdo.

"Overall what I've learned from this project is this; Photoshop allows us to achieve our unobtainable standards of beauty, but when we compare those standards on a global scale, achieving the ideal remains all the more illusive," the journalist stated.

To see the pictures from Honig's "Before and After" Photoshop project, please visit her blog by clicking here.

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