Nicole Kidman receives ridiculous backlash for 'frozen' Vogue cover (PHOTOS)

Jul 21, 2015 at 5:00 p.m. ET
Image: Peter Lindbergh, Vogue, August 2015

When Marc Jacobs shared a picture of Nicole Kidman on the cover of Vogue's August issue wearing a design from his fall 2015 collection, he couldn't have predicted the backlash it would receive.

Despite the obvious beauty of both Kidman and Jacobs' design, the internet decided to harp instead on Kidman's face — and not in a favorable way.


Said kjmelodia@miss_melodia, "Terrible photo, bad makeup, awful photoshop, surgery gone wrong or just a bad day!!!!!" Echoed tarasmyth, "She looks frozen- too much Botox probably," and brigittefritztitz, "@stang_thang her face wtf hahaha."

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For starters, Jacobs was celebrating an iconic moment in his career and a special moment in the life of a woman who — if you read the interview inside — is clearly as beautiful on the inside as she is on the outside.

As for that outside, I personally think it's pretty amazing. In truth, it didn't occur to me that she looked too "plastic-y" when I saw the cover. Quite the opposite, actually. It struck me that Kidman simply looked stunning and perhaps more at ease than she has been in recent years.

Where detractors saw "miserable" and "frozen," I just saw confidence and poise.

Does she look airbrushed, as many of the comments cried foul about? Sure. But as a former magazine editor, I feel as though the digital airbrushing (aka photoshopping) here is minimal and in good taste. If anything, I would concede that her eyes look a bit over-sharpened for my taste.

Which raises another important point — celebrities are routinely airbrushed to some extent for magazine covers, and this is generally beyond their control. Sometimes they don't even see the final proof before it goes to print.

So while I agree with some of the commenters who think it would be refreshing to see the industry standard change to simply showcasing women as they are, I can't see how leaving such insensitive comments on Jacob's Instagram post is helping to further that cause at all.

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If said commenters truly wanted to make a difference, wouldn't they go directly to the source and take Vogue to task, skipping the commentary on Jacobs' account altogether? Isn't leaving such pointed remarks on his feed nothing more than spreading negativity? As themarcjacobs himself put it, "All you haters... When were you last given a cover of Vogue? Damn people have a lot of negative energy..!!"

And, really, aren't women done hating on each other yet?

A woman who, by all accounts, is smart, kind, outspoken, genuine and humble is on the cover of one of the world's most respected magazines. She does not worship at the altar of Hollywood, but instead craves a life outside of the limelight. She is a wife and a mother of two, and she is 48 years old.

Nicole Kidman in Vogue

I'd say having someone like her featured prominently on such a publication is cause for celebration — a win for women.

What is not, I'd say, a win for women is discrediting each other's successes and attacking each other's appearances.

So many of the women who so brazenly mocked Kidman's cover photo were quick to claim they had a right to voice their opinion (which is true) and that they are doing this in the name of women, so that we aren't subject to ridiculous beauty standards. So that we can just be ourselves.

In the name of feminism, even.

Again, I fail to see how attacking Kidman's personal appearance furthers feminism. It isn't progressive, people. We're scrutinizing a woman for, No. 1, a decision that in all likelihood wasn't made by her and, No. 2, for not looking the way we expect her to look.

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It's regressive, no? Hopefully, Kidman is taking the haters in stride, seeing as, well, she is on the cover of Vogue... for the eighth time. Plus, oh, you know, she's got an awfully hunky and equally charming husband at home who is a big fan of that face of hers.

As am I.

Images: Peter Lindbergh, Vogue, August 2015