Finding Beauty in Authenticity: A Conversation with Esther Honig

Human-interest journalist, Esther Honig wanted to investigate whether there is a single global beauty standard. To find out, she sent out a photo of herself via a freelance website and asked Photoshop users around the world to “make her beautiful” by using their personal and cultural beauty standards.

The results are fascinating, became a social media sensation, and prove just how impossible striving for idealized beauty really is. Listen in as Esther and I chat about the power Photoshop images have to impact our self-esteem and mental and physical health, and the freedom of finding beauty in authenticity.

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View all of Esther’s “Before and After” photos.

For more information and tips on building a positive body image and embracing the beauty in imperfection, visit the archives at

Heidi Wachter is the Community Engagement Specialist for Experience Life.

Photos used by permission of Esther Honig.