Images digitally alerted to make models look thinner must carry a warning that they have been “touched up” under a French law aimed at tackling anorexia that comes into force on Sunday.
Doctoring fashion photographs is a common practice but is seen as a public health issue in France, where about 600,000 people suffer from anorexia or other eating disorders, according to the health ministry.
Any publication of a digitally edited or airbrushed commercial image not clearly labelled as “photographie retouchée” (touched up photograph) can be punished with a fine of at least €37,500, or 30 per cent of the cost of creating the advertisement.
The authorities hope the new “Photoshop warning” will discourage unhealthy extreme thinness among people trying to emulate unrealistic body shapes that were faked with a computer programme.
Marisol Touraine, the former health minister who introduced the legislation, said it was intended “to avoid promoting inaccessible ideals of beauty and to …