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New Ad Campaign Begs Us to 'Stop the Beauty Madness' Through Powerful Images

Ad campaign asks us to "Stop the Beauty Madness"

The age of Photoshop has brought us many amazing things, with all its wondrous creative tools and lickity-split design shortcuts. But it's also brought us the dangerous beast of photo-retouching and as the world around us becomes increasingly airbrushed, it's impossible not to see how our definition of beauty has not only changed, but driven straight off the rails as a result.

No matter how many times we're told otherwise, even our grown-up, intellectualized minds can slip into forgetfulness when we look at the cover of a magazine and mistake the impossibly thin, blemish-free model staring back for the real thing. But despite her mysterious lack of cellulite, flawless skin and positively envious thigh-gap, we must remember: She is not real. At least, not entirely. She has been retouched into oblivion, altered and thinned out, shaded and trimmed in all the right places ... even she doesn't look like that in real life. So why do we keep pretending she is? And even worse, why do we continue to think our own body — epically "imperfect" by comparison — somehow means we are less-than?

A new ad campaign aims to put a stop to all this madness (literally, it's called "Stop the Beauty Madness") with a series of 25 truly compelling ad images. Each one is accompanied by starkly honest captions that cut right to the heart of the matter.

If you're feeling like you've been "socked in the gut" as you read through them, you should — that's exactly the reaction campaign co-founder Robin Rice wants from you. As the author and founder behind Be Who You Are Productions, Rice wants to create a conversation around why we place ridiculously unrealistic expectations of ourselves and also why we somehow equate our physical beauty with our inner worth to begin with.

As the website declares, "There comes a time when you have simply had enough. Enough of the impossible standards. Enough of the 'ideal' image. Most of all, enough of the feeling of NOT ENOUGH when it comes to your own beauty. There also comes a time when an entire culture of women have had it. When blogs and ad campaigns and as-is selfie pictures start to change the rules of the game."

"My main mission is to say if women are worried about their weight and their looks to the point that they're not actually putting themselves in the world, then we're missing out on some really extraordinary individuals and some really important conversations we need to be having," Rice recently told the Huffington Post. "Women need to be helping the world move in a more beautiful direction — a genuinely beautiful direction."

We'll raise a glass to that.

See more powerful images from the ad campaign here — and prepare to be moved.

Images via StoptheBeautyMadness.com

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