Meghan Trainor and Ashley Graham Got Super Real About Why They Don't Want to Be Photoshopped
The "All About That Bass" singer clarified what *really* happened when one of her music videos was Photoshopped without her permission.
From Zendaya to Lena Dunham to Ronda Rousey, more celebrities are taking a stand against the Photoshopping of their photos. But even when celebs are vocal about their stance on retouching their photos, sometimes they still stumble upon heavily edited images, or even videos of themselves circulating online.
Case in point: the time Meghan Trainor had to take down the music video for her 2016 single "Me Too" after discovering her waist had been edited to look smaller without her permission. "My waist is not that teeny," Trainor explained on Snapchat at the time. "I had a bomb waist that night. I don't know why [the music video editors] didn't like my waist, but I didn't approve that video and it went out for the world, so I'm embarrassed."
Now, Trainor is sharing why the unapproved Photoshopping of her music video was so upsetting. She recently sat down with Ashley Graham on an episode of Graham's podcast, Pretty Big Deal, and the two commiserated on what it feels like to have your photos edited without your permission. (Related: Watch How Quickly This Blogger Is Able to Photoshop Her Entire Body for the 'Gram)
Graham told Trainor there have been "so many times" when Graham has explicitly told photographers on photoshoot sets not to retouch details like dimples on her body. But even when Graham openly communicates those feelings, she still finds that her cellulite, waist, and face are often edited anyway without her permission.
"You have no say," Trainor pointed out, explaining that she had a similar experience when approving the edits for her "Me Too" music video.
The singer told Graham that she was attentive to the music video's editing process every step of the way. But once the video was released, Trainor "instantly" knew something was wrong, she shared. "I approved a video. It wasn't that," she said.
After seeing screenshots of the video from fans online, Trainor initially thought it was the fans who had Photoshopped her waist—not the editors behind the video, she explained. Either way, she knew that what she was seeing in the first version of the music video "wasn't human," she said. Trainor then insisted that her team take the video down and replace it with the unaltered version, she told Graham. (Related: Cassey Ho "Decoded" Instagram's Beauty Standard—Then Photoshopped Herself to Match It)
Trainor said she was particularly upset about the incident because Photoshopping her own music video would mean contradicting the body-positive messages she's been trying to spread throughout her career with self-love anthems like "All About That Bass".
"Of everyone [this could happen to], me? I am the 'no Photoshop' girl," Trainor told Graham, adding that she felt "embarrassed" about the whole situation.
Graham sympathized with Trainor, explaining that they simply "can't have these conversations of [self-love]" in one moment, and then appear on magazine covers or in music videos with Photoshopped images in the next. "It's so frustrating," said Trainor. (Graham and Trainor are just two of many inspiring women who are redefining body standards.)
These days, Trainor is still writing music about self-love and body positivity—but she keeps it real when it comes to the ups and downs she feels about her body image.
"I have days when I hate myself and have to really work on it," Trainor told Billboard in a recent interview. "It's a struggle all the time."
But as Graham wrote in a recent Instagram post, Trainor's story "teaches us to take up space confidently, go after our dreams, and to put the messages out there that you need to hear."