Kerry Washington, InStyle Magazine Respond to Cover Backlash

Kerry Washington, InStyle Magazine Respond to Cover Backlash

The magazine says it didn't intentionally try to lighten the actress's skin.

Published February 9, 2015

Kerry Washington’s latest cover with InStyle might have usually brought about applause and cheers from her gladiators, but instead it was met with much criticism. Many felt that her skin was lightened in the cover photo and that the Scandal star looked completely unrecognizable. Perhaps it was a Photoshop job gone terribly wrong? Whatever the reason, fans were up in arms about the cover, and the magazine responded with an explanation.

“We are super fans of Kerry Washington here at InStyle,” read a statement posted on the magazine’s website. “To feature her on the cover of our March spring fashion issue is both an honor and a delight. We have heard from those who have spoken out about our newsstand cover photograph, concerned that Kerry’s skin tone was lightened. While we did not digitally lighten Kerry’s skin tone, our cover lighting has likely contributed to this concern. We understand that this has resulted in disappointment and hurt. We are listening, and the feedback has been valuable. We are committed to ensuring that this experience has a positive influence on the ways in which we present all women going forward.”

Washington later responded to the magazine’s statement over Twitter saying, “Beautiful statement. Thank u 4 opening this convo. Its an important 1 that needs to be had.”

But on a lighter note (sorry, we couldn't resist), Washington’s interview includes her take on where her Scandal character Olivia Pope’s style differs from her own.

“Red-carpet Kerry wears a lot more color and pattern than Olivia does,” she told InStyle. “She makes bold choices. When I was pregnant, I showed up at the SAG awards in a bare-midriff gown by Prada. I knew some people were going to hate it, but I thought it was super cute and really fun. Olivia, meanwhile, sticks to a more neutral palette in pastels by designers like Dior, Ferragamo, and Escada.”

What do you think of Washington’s latest cover? Do you think InStyle intended to lighten her skin for the cover?

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(Photo: InStyle Magazine, March 2015)

Written by Dorkys Ramos

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