Two adverts have been banned by the Advertising Standards Authority after a complaint from MP Jo Swinson.
Promotions for foundations by Lancome and Maybelline, starring Julia Roberts and supermodel Christy Turlington, were deemed misleading by the watchdog due to extensive airbrushing.
Swinson, who is campaigning against digital re-touching, said the ruling would send a message to advertisers and called for beauty giants to “get back to reality”.
“It shows just how ridiculous things have become when there is such fear over an unairbrushed photo that even the advertising regulator isn’t permitted to see it.
“Excessive airbrushing and digital manipulation techniques have become the norm, but both Christy Turlington and Julia Roberts are naturally beautiful women who don’t need retouching to look great. This ban sends a powerful message to advertisers – let’s get back to reality.”
The Liberal Democrat MP said it was important for adverts to reflect reality to help the self-esteem of everyday women.
“Pictures of flawless skin and super-slim bodies are all around, but they don’t reflect reality. With one in four people feeling depressed about their body, it’s time to consider how these idealised images are distorting our idea of beauty.
“Shockingly, even the ASA weren’t contractually allowed to see the pre-production photo of Julia Roberts.