Elle Accused of Lightening Gabourey Sidibe’s Skin

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The other three covers. Photo: Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Iamges

Gabourey Sidibe is one of four celebrities to appear on the cover of Elle's October 25th anniversary issue. The magazine is drawing criticism from people who think photo editors digitally retouched Sidibe so that her skin looks several shades lighter than it does in other photos. Elle claims no wrongdoing:

In a statement the magazine said that “nothing out of the ordinary” had been done to the photograph.

“We have four separate covers this month and Gabby's cover was not retouched any more or less than the others” it read.

“We had 25 cover-worthy subjects in our portfolio and we chose Gabby because of who she is.

“We shot this as a story of exuberant young women changing the world. If you take a look at the portfolio, each of the women were shot in different ways and for different reasons."

However, the magazine cropped Sidibe from the chest up, while fellow cover girls Megan Fox's, Amanda Seyfried's, and Lauren Conrad's actual figures appear in their cover shots. Elle said in the statement that "each of the women were shot in different ways and for different reasons," which seems like a pretty flimsy defense if that's what they were trying to make. The cropping on Sidibe is somewhat unusual for the magazine, which uses pretty similar crops on all its cover girls, not just these three.


Elle magazine in Gabourey Sidibe skin lightening controversy [Telegraph]