5.02.2012

If we could all only look like the photoshopped version of ourselves

We all know the big bloggers out there, the big fashion bloggers (cough cough) and how perfect their pictures/outfits/relationships/LIFE appears. 

I'm not one to judge so maybe, just maybe, their life IS that perfect. Their marriage IS that perfect. Their hair always looks like that and they really are that happy. Every. Single. Freaking. Day.

Likely? Not at all. But possible nonetheless. Most likely not though.

Me? Hell. I hardly style my hair. Whenever my sisters see me with my hair did, their first response is always, "are you taking pictures for your blog today?" Because 99% of the time, I want to look put together on this here blog. I want to look stylish, like I have it together. I want you all to think I have the perfect life and the perfect kids and the perfect marriage.

Ha. 

I don't. My husband and I go to counseling often. And not because it "helps us maintain a wonderful relationship when we get outside perspective." No, we go to counseling because we need it. Because I don't want my kids to grow up in a volatile home, with both parents fighting every night. 

In other words, my life is not as perfect as my instagram pictures may make it seem. 

But that's ok. Because I strive to be real and honest and hopefully, by being real and honest, I can help others who think I have it all and wonder why they don't. 

I absolutely do not have it all.

You all know how much I love my soul sister Britney. And when I saw that she released these before&after pictures of herself natural and photoshopped, well, my heart runneth over for that bitch.

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Is it just me or does homegirl look way better in the before pics?

To get a little more personal, here's a few before and afters of yours truly.

Just a few things to note in the first pic:

1. I am not actively dragging my child across the ground. He just so happened to fall over in that position right when the picture was taken.
2. My stomach is not really that poochy. That particular dress that I am wearing bunches out underneath the belt.
3. Yes, my ass really is that big.

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But see what I did? I changed the colors, gave it a vintage feel. I made the pooch disappear and shaved a few inches off the badonk. I look good in the right photo, but I really look like the left one.

One more...

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Before is totally untouched. In the after,  I have whitened my teeth, added mascara, taken the wrinkles out from under my eyes and smoothed out my forehead. I also made myself 28.4% thinner.

It's an illusion.

It's not real.

And when I post a picture like this? That is semi (semi!) decent?

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Let it be known that most turned out like this...

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My whole reason for this post is that I have just recently been getting a little annoyed by how some bloggers tend to present themselves as always perfect. Always put together. Or better yet, they give you the whole "this is my sweaty nasty look after I get out of the gym" and all the while their hair is done up in that stupid flippin' "blogger topknot" and their lululemons are hugging their ass and showcasing their boobs.

Please.


118 comments:

  1. Hi from Germany! I love your blog. This post - well it ROCKS! Thanks. I am also so sick and tired of women putting on the fake fronts which make other women question their relationships/lives. I come here because of your honesty (and humour of course!)

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    1. Amazing photography, great. just love the post.

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  2. LOVE LOVE LOVE this post! I am about as real as they come. I hardly ever wear makeup or do my hair because, frankly, at 5 AM, that shit just doesn't happen. I'd rather take the extra 30 minutes and sleep.

    I love how honest and straight forward you are - it is refreshing, and I love it - and you!

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  3. AMEN SISTA! I CAN.NOT.STAND. the blogs that look perfect all the time! Straight up shut up! Seriously do you really think that we think your life is THAT perfect? Not so much and ya know what even if it is hey good for you!

    Love how honest you are and how down to earth and real you are!

    Happy Wednesday!

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  4. I love and appreciate your honesty and the ability to be and show who you really are--awesome :)

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  5. HAHAHA! Love this.

    I see bloggers who wear the most perfect outfit and have the most perfect styled hair. I'm like really?!?! I wish I had time to do that (I mean, I do..I just don't want to hahaha).

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  6. I almost never comment (I'm one of those lurkers, sorry!) but I have to tell you how much I love this post and how much I love you for posting this! Thank you for the honesty and keep the real posts coming!

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  7. I LOVE this post! Thank You for someone callin' them out for being a little bit too "perfect".

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  8. This is great. You had me laughing at the blogger topnot with lulu lemons. I thought I was snazzy with instagram.... I really need to get me some photoshop! ;)

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  9. sometimes I worry that people won't like me and my blog because I'm not perfect. I'm lucky to make it to work in one piece every day. thanks for being real : )

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  10. I absolutely LOVE this post, Raven! I think you look AMAZING in your before photos - you don't need any of that photoshop stuff!
    I sometimes get wrapped up in the "perfect" blogs but I remind myself that will never, ever be me.

    Thanks for keeping it REAL!

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  11. Your posts just get better by the day...I LOVE this one and really appreciate it. While I am not a blogger myself, I do read a handful or so of blogs and the ones where everything is Perfect make me want to gag and I don't read them because I have always thought, Really?? that is not real life. That is one of the main reasons I LOVE your blog because you are real and I can see that in your writing and your pictures, plus your stories are hilarious, your boys are so stinkin cute and you are beautiful...just to name a few! Your before pics and Britney's before pics are way better in my opinion!

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  12. Bahahaha! Love this post! seriously.

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  13. I love every single post you write, but especially this one. =) I saw the article at Britney and was really happy that she released the before pictures. Before & After pictures are always fun to look at, but these kinds of b&a pictures make me respect people WAY more.

    Your gorgeous, and you shouldn't use Photoshop! Well...except for the first one where the dress made you look a little flabby in the tummy. I'd have done the same thing, haha. But other than that...the little things you fixed wouldn't have even been noticeable if you'd not pointed them out. We're always more critical of ourselves, anyway.

    & I'm with ya - I hate "perfect" bloggers.

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  14. PREACH.IT.SISTAHFRIEND!

    I am 100% with you on trying to be real. Maybe other people need the 'fake perfect' blog appearance to feel better about themselves?!

    Keep on keeping on girl, I love you and your blog as you are!

    and love the candid pics of your chilin's so precious!

    xoxo

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  15. Thanks so much for posting this!

    The other thing that gets me are people who take random shots of their homes .... you do NOT always have fresh tulips in every room of your house.

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  16. I'll be honest. When I first stopped by your blog a few months ago, my gut reaction was "man, this gal likes her dranks."

    Over time, you have easily earned a spot as one of the most respectable blogs I read. Booze and occasional crass all. because it's YOU. I was walking into work this morning looking at my wrinkly shirt and day2 hair that I've braided to look 50% less greasy and thinking, "why can't I look like those girls whose hair is always done, and whose clothes are always new and crisp and stylish?"... answer? because it's not ME. I do, sometimes, but the rest of the time I'm a quirky little mess, because that's who I am.

    I agree that reading blogs can definitely make you feel inadequate, or posting something negative or ugly takes you down a notch from that pedestal of "pretty bloggers" but that's not real.

    Thank you for writing this!

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  17. Yes...I never comment, but after reading this post, had to say you are BY FAR my favorite blogger ever! I have been reading yours for a few months now, and its like you're my big sister haha! Everyones life is not perfect, its nice for someone to admit that once in a while :)
    Keep it up!!

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  18. All I have to say is: Amen.

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  19. Hahah I really love this. I love that you keep it real every single day. It is very hard not to get tangled up in the world of perfect looking bloggers. Thanks for the reminder :)

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  20. LOVE IT! I actually have to stop reading some bloggers because they act like their lives are perfect w/perfect pictures to go with them!

    I laughed out loud though, when you pointed out what changed in the picture w/you dragging your kid (just kidding)..."and yes, my ass is really that big" lol...that made me giggle...out loud.

    I look a lot like Britney in that before picture. Big butt, little bit of cellulite on my legs...definitely don't look all Barbie like.

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  21. This is why I love you!!! Thanks for being honest its refreshing to have someone that blogs that is just like the rest of us!!

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  22. this shit is off the chain.

    THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU.

    for every. last. word.

    so real, so honest. i can respect that :)

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  23. YES YES YES YES YES YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


    Well said woman!!!

    Quite frankly, I DO NOT read the blogs that those bitches try to always be perfect.

    We all want to look better on the blog, but at some point there are some "real" pictures that come out too.

    I freaking love you! &your so called big ass! :)

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  24. You truly are gorgeous no matter what. No joke girlfriend. Gorgeous.

    Britney also looks better in the before. She is simply aaaaaamazing.

    Blogging, twitter, fb, instagram, etc. definitely shows off a little fakeness in everyone... including me. My girls pictures are typically of them pulling hair, screaming, or hitting each other.

    But they look like angels all over the internets unless I show off a little diddy to embarrass them later in life.

    and this post is why I love you:)

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  25. ONE OF MY FAVORITE POSTS... EVER!
    THANKS

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  26. HAHA...awesome post, chica!!!! I get bored with the "my life is perfect and I always look perfect" blogs so I usually don't read for long...you are always so real and I love it!!! And yes, I too vote for the Britney before pics...much better!

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  27. Muahaha- a FANTASTIC day start to my day :) I cracked up at the blogger topknot. Someday I want to post my version of it... meaning, I haven't showered on a Saturday and my hubby and I are laying around in sweats and that's where my hair ends up. On top, in a mess of a knot-- NOT stylishly placed and pinned and sprayed!

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  28. I love this! I read quite a few "mom blogs" and most of them make me feel bad about the fact that I have blow dried my hair maybe twice in the last 6 weeks and that most days I'm in yoga pants and a robe not giving a crap what my "OOTD" looks like (Making me appreciate YOUR OOTD instagram posts that much more!) Thanks for this post today!

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  29. PREACH!!!

    I whole heartedly agree!

    p.s. I agree about Ms Spears.

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  30. LOVE this.
    So honest and real. It's definitely refreshing among all the blogs where everyone is always so put together.

    I work out, clean, and am too occupied living life to look put together every single day.

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  31. I love this post, it is so real. I've stumbled across a few blogs where everything is picture perfect, and nothing bad is said.. I move on to the next blog. There is no way every single moment is perfect. Everyone has flaws and some "ugly" moments. But sharing those with others is what helps them relate to you.
    I don't know why you touch up your photos, you look amazing in the before photos. With that said, if you want to touch up a few of mine I won't say no ;)
    Thanks for making me feel better this morning!

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  32. God bless you Raven! I love this post! You are as authentic as they come! I can say I 100% relate to your comments on your marriage, even about the kids.

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  33. Big thumbs up to you (and Britney).
    Big, GIANT, unphotoshopped thumbs up to you! :)

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  34. I LOVE this post. So. True.

    I feel like 90% of the blogs I read are fake and "oh my amazing husband" and "I stay at home and decorate the house all day"/ Come on. Drives me nuts.

    Thanks for keeping it real. You are gorgeous, your kids are gorgeous and don't let those fake betches make you (or any of us) feel otherwise.

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  35. So true.

    Love the pic of you and the boys!!!
    i have to take a million before getting a decent one, too! haha.
    Thank God for digital cameras because I'd sure use up a roll of film REAL QUICK like!

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  36. Excellent post! I just wish I knew how to use photoshop. :P

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  37. OMG! I love this post SO MUCH! Seriously. Love it. This is one of the reasons you're one of my favorite bloggers. You're REAL. And you're not afraid to show it. Just like Brit Brit. Another reason you two should be besties. HAHA :)

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  38. I fucking love you for writing all of this. No, life is not all unicorns and rainbows. Shit is real, and real people have marital problems and cellulite, damnit! My husband and I go to counseling too. It's a great refresher for our communication and keeps us grounded. People think it's some big secret, but when I actually started being open and talking about it, it was amazing how many people actually admitted to going. And guess what? There's NOTHING wrong with that! Thanks for keeping it real!

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  39. haha you have definitely mastered how to pose to get a great shot! I will never forget the ROLLS AND ROLLS of film you went through before the day of the digital camera. ;)

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  40. what do you use to edit your pictures?!

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  41. Thank you mama! This was flippn AWEsome. LOVE LOVE LOVEEEEE this post.

    You rock, & so does Miss Britney!

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  42. Love this post. "perfect bloggers" annoy me because everyone knows what we are reading isnt the whole truth. Great post hun!

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  43. I totally agree!! So many bloggers put so much effort into making themselves look perfect and it makes a lot of other people feel so inadequate. Great post!

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  44. I am definitely feeling this post and I appreciate you putting your "not perfect" stuff out there! And totally random but what photoshop do you use?! I am looking into working with something new and any help I can get the better!

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  45. hahaha i totally agree with your whole post. i love your honesty! I'm a new follower and would love you to come link up whatever post u want to my link party going on here:
    http://itsjustcalledspicy.blogspot.com/2012/05/spicy-link-up-3.html

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  46. Hahahahaha I love it. Love how you keep it real. Seriously you're my alltime FAVORITE blog. I wish you lived in Ohio and we could be real life friends. :)

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  47. And this is why I love you. In a total, non creepy way. Ha, ha!!!

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  48. Ohhh how I love you Raven! This is awesome. I sometimes post pictures of my outfits but I promise they are never photoshopped, that shit is too hard for me to figure out :)

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  49. SO glad I read this. Bless you for this post...seriously. I've never used photoshop simply bc I don't know how, but I can appreciate how honest and real you are about when you use it! That's awesome. No one's life is perfect and sometimes in blog world it's hard to remember that. Thanks for this woman!

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  50. Love this....and this post is exactly why I love you and your blog.

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  51. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this post!!! And wow, I have to say Britney's legs soooooooo fake in the after ones... And I like how honest you were about yourself. :) It was a fabulous post and I think it's so true. I mean photographers take millions of pictures before getting the perfect one :)
    Have a great day!!!
    AND LOLOLOLOLOL at him falling on the ground!!!!

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  52. OMG I love this! Im posting a VLOG tomorrow that I made last night, no makeup, nasty hair, 15 year old shirt (literally it was my Mommas) and Im rocking that shit! This B is a MESS most of the time! hahah

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  53. Love this post!!! I hate when people try to sell themselves and their relationships as perfection. Well said!!!

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  54. Go on girl! I am totally right there with you!!

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  55. I just foung your blog and I LOVE it!

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  56. this is such a poignant post - it's important to remember that it's only part of someone's life that we're seeing on a blog... that everyone has trials & problems & sweatpants days.

    thank you for keeping it real.

    - l

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  57. I love you. I was just emailing with another blogger about people's seemingly perfect life. Your collage of pics made me smile because when I ask people to take pics of me and the boys and it takes forever for both of them to look at the camera, I give up and tell people, "This is our life, it's ok." Now please teach me how you made yourself 28% thinner?! I keep needing to figure out how to photoshop "pooch" for work and can't figure it out. I haven't found a good tutorial on youtube yet either.

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  58. thank you so much for this post. seriously, you rock.

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  59. AMEN girl, AMEN!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  60. THANK.YOU! Omg i've been wondering the same thing...like how the eff do these (fashion) bloggers look so put together EVERY day! Do they not own a pair of sweat pants or "normal" clothes?! lol

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  61. good job!! I love this post!

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  62. This. Made. My. Day. Thanks for keeping it real! Love your blog :)

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  63. Thank you!!!! I love me some photoshop but let's all be honest and just admit to it!

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  64. I love this! I just recapped the last year of my blog and while I was going through I realized that I'm a hot mess but I wouldn't have it any other way. You can take it or leave it.

    P.S. Every time you talk about your husband all I can picture is him sayng "Raven you're ruining our marriage" hahaha

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  65. I LOVE your blog!! I love that you keep it real and I hate the blogger top knot as well! lol

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  66. So I absolutely loved this post! If my hair is in a pony or if the picture is further away it means that I am on 2-day hair or I have no makeup on. :) Gotta love it! I will say blogging has made me rethink my wardrobe though! Haha.

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  67. And this post is why I love you.

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  68. Totally agree. Tre truth is the only thing that sets you free.

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  69. I love this post!! My friend and I were talking the other day about how certain blogs make us feel like we suck at life. I think it is amazing that you showed the before and afters of your pics and honestly you look fantastic in the original photos! I also think that most couples that claim to have the perfect marriage is lying. It is impossible to live with another human being with out clashing or fighting occasionally. It is human nature. Thank you for posting this!!!

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  70. I wear make up and do my hair about twice a week... and those are the 2 days that generally make it onto my blog. Haha!! I totally feel you and I don't even have kids. And I'm breaking out so bad that Bryan told me I should probably go see a dermatologist. Ugh... Thanks for this post!

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  71. Raven, that's why you're one of my favorite bloggers...seriously girl, you keep it real! I love that about you. Great post! Keep 'em coming cuz I love reading your blog! ;)

    xoyeanxo

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  72. Thank you for this! I was just about to write a post like this myself but you said it so much better than I could. You rock for being honest and transparent. and your before pictures. . .gorgeous!

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  73. ah you are so awesome. And goodness gracious I LOVE Britney for doing that too. She definitely doesn't need it- she's so flippin' gorgeous.

    Thanks for keeping it real- always so, so appreciated.

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  74. I adore you Raven! So refreshing to read something so honest. Keep on keepin it real girl! xoxo

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  75. Okay bish. I love this post and I love you. You effing rock. :) That is all.

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  76. Love Britney, & love this post!
    No such thing as perfection.
    & how do you photoshop mascara?
    Not gonna lie, that's kinda cool.

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  77. Rockin my socks off yet again lover! Loved the post! And HELLO!?!?! Where the eff is the mascara button??? I've never wore any in real life... I'll have to try it out on my photos, ha! XOXO

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  78. When are they going to give you your own talk show Raven?! Seriously you are too awesome!!

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  79. Amen! You are flippin' awesome!

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  80. Hi I'm a new follower - Love this post! I'm a Britney lover too so I totally love that she put these before pics out there. We all present a certain image of our lives on our blogs, but of course everything isn't always so sunny and happy.

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  81. you are seriously awesome. i know that i find myself on these blogs at times and i do wonder how the heck they look so good. then i start to wonder what they use in their hair, on their face and what their workout regime is like. then i start to feel terrible about myself. but you, my friend, are so real and its such a breath of fresh air to read your posts. thank you for reminding us all that photoshop has taken over and is so easily capable of making true beauty. your gorgeous, but your truth, honesty and inner beauty alone trump these other girls 'beauty' in a second.

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  82. Haha I flippin' love it! I TOTALLY think that Britt looks better in the untouched ones...I've done a post like this before where I show before and after photos and people eat it up. I edit my pics, but not like "some people who shall remain nameless". I don't want people to meet me IRL and be like "WTF" you don't look like your blog photos!

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  83. Rock on girlfriend! I love that you brought this post to the "blogosphere" I read alot of blogs while I'm umm...working and notice some ppl are always so damn happy all the time and things are just fabulous and in turn makes me feel like I've got issues when I'm pissed off about something. I love the realness of your blog and hope to build my baby blog up one day like yours, because you've stayed true to you which is why so many love you and your blog! Have a great day! xo
    cacutie333.blogspot.com

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  84. Raven,
    I came to work one day and was blogging and looked at my girlfriend and said I'm so sick and tired of reading about how freakin happy these people are! That is the honest to God truth! Thank you for making me feel like I am not the the odd man out! Reading this post was so awesome and down to earth that I loved reading every bit of it!! BTW I think you are beautiful in both your before and after pictures! Thank you for keeping it real girl!

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  85. Oh my gah! BEST post EVER! I could not agree more with all the FAKE-NESS going around in the blog world! You are AWESOME! :)

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  86. love your blog!
    i "photoshop" myself sometimes on pic monkey just for giggles and its so funny. and so sad. how do you look at yourself properly when everything else is so distorted??!

    xx jes, www.twosmuppies.com

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  87. looove!!

    everything about this.

    also, how do i photoshop myself to look 28% thinner? lol!!

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  88. I agree. Nothing makes me feel worse than seeing girls who are always talking about how "fat" they are or how bad they look in pictures and see how great they look to me. Embrace yourselves ladies!

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  89. You just made me really happy. Thanks for the honesty.

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  90. i love that you brought awareness to this. so very important. and even those outtake shots of you are adorable!!
    xo TJ

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  91. A friend of mine sent me a link to this post yesterday after I wrote about wishing friends and family didn't follow my blog because sometimes I Just need to bitch it out lol
    Thank you for being so real for the rest of us.
    Between Blogs and FB it is SO hard to figure out who only appears to be put together and living it up...my brother's gf is so fake like that and it sometimes makes me feel like what am I doing with my life? then I remember they aren't better than me and what they put out there is for the masses and NOT their real life.
    Thank you for helping me remember this =) you rock and I LOVE your blog; so glad I found you =)

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  92. I looooovvveeeee this.

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  94. you're amazing!! Thank you so much for this post. What a bold statement to post such an open and honest thing and if we were all this honest, what a different/wonderful world we would live in. Props to you for rocking it!!!

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  95. i flipping love this post.

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  96. I love you. Thank you for this. I get annoyed at those pictures too.

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  97. um 101 comments? Btw - we aren't supposed to let the blogger world know who we really are. WHY WOULD YOU DO THIS POST???????????????

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  98. It's so true though. Beth laughs hysterically when I get "fan emails" - she's like ummmmmmm, if they only knew. And seriously I don't think one person would recognize me in the real world considering how fat I've let myself get, how I don't shower regularly, barely wear make-up to work and my outfits are sometimes bag lady looking. God bless the blog. We can pretend our lives are perfect to thousands.

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  99. I still have no clue how to edit photos. Not that I have put any time into figuring it out. Is there a program you use? Im not on Instagram can I still edit elsewhere?

    But, I agree. Too many bloggers have the "perfect life". To be honest I get real annoyed with those blogs and have even quit following some of them. I have definitely thought a couple times after reading those blogs that something was wrong with my life since I wasn't always so cheerful and I didn't spend every spare second with my husband holding hands and shopping together. But then I think about it and realize these girls are probably putting on a fake act a good portion of the time. I like REAL blogs!!

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  100. AMEN! That is all I have to say about this post!

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  101. Wow. Those Britney pics totally made me feel better. Love that you're always for REAL.

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  102. Above. Lindsay's comment. Lord I can't get enough of her.

    Or you for that matter.

    My question is.... how the hell do you photoshop pooches out and butts out? and make yourself 28% skinnier?!

    i need THAT photoshop. then i could do OOTD and become BLOG FAMOUS.


    BAM.

    :)

    p.s. BEAUTIFUL post my dear friend. XOXO

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  103. Oh my gosh, I could not agree more with the whole workout pictures. I get so tired of seeing people post their "after working out" pictures and all you see are boobs and butts. Ugh. But I think you are gorgeous, even before Photoshop. : ) Teach me to use Photoshop. I need it!!

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  104. 1. I fucking love Britney Spears.
    2. Amen.

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  105. Sweet post Raven! haha So glad to know that you are definitely NOT referring to my blog since I am definitely NOT a blogger that posts pictures of my self on my blog all that often and I definitely don't even know how to use my pHotoshop on my own (usually why I am bugging you for all the How Tos and such LOL) I am always glad you say it like it is!

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  106. love this raven

    youre boootyful just the way you are! AND REAL!!

    to be honest...i bet allll those girls who go out and take pics for their fashion blogs are always liek UGH i wanna be in sweats! I mean really...who goes out to breakfast looking like they stepped off the red carpet

    xoxoxo keepin it realllll

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  107. I am always perfect. I won't let you make me feel bad for it either. My fat rolls are amazing and so is the cottage cheese on my ass. I wish I knew how to photoshop. How do you photoshop someone that is already perfect? I can't even imagine how many more followers I would get with those kind of pictures on my blog.

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  108. Just came across this post & think it's pretty awesome. I'm also AMAZED that you know how to do that shit in photoshop. Are you like a professional photo retoucher?!?! I would NEVER HAVE KNOWN and frankly, I would never have known that it was even POSSIBLE to do those things to photos unless you had access to all the shit that Cosmo, etc. has.

    That said, you look just as pretty in the untouched photos. We girls are so tough on ourselves. I hate 90% of pictures I take cause my eyes are squinting, or I have a double chin, or whatever.

    Good for you for putting all this out there!

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  109. How nice the posting it is! Now a day many unsocial work done so that Online Photoshop is essential for all. I think if this is use Right way must be any country development.

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