I’m not a regular reader of Cosmopolitan magazine, but when I saw that Demi Lovato was on the cover of the July issue, I just had to pick it up! I have been following the career of the 19-year-old singer/actress since I first heard her powerful voice back in 2008 in the hit Disney movie, Camp Rock.
Inside the issue Demi discusses the hardships that she has faced in her life over the past couple of years. From the very beginning of her struggles, she has been completely honest about it all and continues to do so in the article. As always, she openly discusses her battles with anorexia, bulimia, self-medication and cutting. Demi admits that she will be in recovery forever, saying, “It’s a daily thing; you don’t get time off from it. And if I feel myself slipping back into old patterns, I have to ask others for help.”
The young star is even commended by Cosmo for her honesty and applauded for her ability to stay real in the “manufactured and fake” world that is Hollywood.
But before you begin thinking that Cosmo is actually promoting positive body image (I can’t have been the only one thinking they were coming to the bright side) can we take a quick second to look at the cover?
I find it ironic that with all this talk of Demi’s body image issues and her efforts to raise awareness to gurls of what a healthy body looks and feels like, Cosmo still had the audacity to photoshop Demi’s body on their cover. I know I shouldn’t be surprised, because Cosmo is notorious not only for their outrageous sex tips but also for their ability to photoshop even the slightest wrinkle on a celebrity’s ring finger. Photoshop gives the magazine the capability to morph the human body into what is “perfect” in our society and for some reason, the editors of the magazine think that altering someone’s body is okay – but it’s not.
I believe it takes a lot of courage for anyone, especially a celebrity, to openly discuss any body and appearance issues that he or she possesses. Because Demi allows herself to be so vulnerable in front of the public eye, I think she deserves a great amount of respect and admiration. For Cosmo to take a chunk out of her waistline and airbrush her face to the point where it doesn’t even look like her is absolutely disgusting.
Demi reveals to the magazine that “it’s been tough but [she’s] really excited to be in a more healthy, positive place.” Would seeing a photoshopped version of yourself spread on magazine stands across the country really help with your recovery and keep you in a positive place?
Even though Cosmo’s demographic covers readers a little older than the majority of Demi’s fans, the magazine should expect that just by putting the new X-Factor judge on the cover, their readership demographic is going to expand to a younger audience. And the fact that Demi is discussing her issues is surely going to speak to struggling teens across the nation. It’s frustrating to see yet another example of the influence that media has on women’s body image and how hard it is going to be for us to fight against it.
I wish I could speak with Demi to find out what she thinks of all of this, especially because she tells Cosmo, “so much has happened, and I’m really glad it’s all over.” I’m not so sure it’s really over for her. The fire continues, and we need all the gurls we can get to help put it out.