Troian Bellisario knew what she was signing up for when she agreed to do a men's mag photo shoot.
So the Pretty Little Liars star took to Instagram today in defense of the darned-if-you-do, darned-if-you-don't commentary that greeted the sexy pics she posed for with costars Ashley Benson, Lucy Hale and Shay Mitchell for a spread in the June issue of GQ.
Let's just say...they looked glossy. So much so that The Gloss' Hayley Hoover wrote, "While I understand that GQ‘s target demographic is probably, you know, not high school girls, it still makes me sad to see some of the smartest female characters on TV getting reduced to shiny, poreless Barbies."
But Bellisario, for one, wasn't too appalled by the post-shoot touchup.
"So by now you have seen many a shot from#GQ and many people have said that we were photoshopped... OF COURSE WE WERE!" the actress wrote on Instagram Wednesday.
"that's a very specific type of photo shoot. And looking very blown out and perfected was obviously what they were looking for. Great. Cool. As long as we acknowledge how it was achieved so we know it's not real. Here's some behind the scenes of my body the way it is and was on the day. I'm not mad at how these pictures turned out, the girls and I had an absolute blast. More fun than we've had on a photoshoot in a while, and I think you can see that in our eyes and smiles.
"But it's the same everywhere," Bellisario continued. "It's the same way on the posters of our show and even in women's magazines. This industry seems to invest more in perfection than in flaw. But flaw and individuality, to me, are what make a human being interesting, they make our stories worth telling. (Unfortunately the flaws don't usually sell products or magazines) I'm proud of my body and the way it looks because@themarkwildman kicks my butt in aerial. But my hips and thighs are a part of me (even though they magically weren't in some shots!) I get those things from my momma. And I'm happy To shake what my momma gave me."
And GQ was obviously happy to let Bellisario, Benson, Hale and Mitchell show off their assets—all subject to final-cut approval, of course.
The finished result, featuring the comely quartet in a variety of bikinis, was a playful, candy-colored confection of a photo spread that played up the pinup vibe with the actress' bright-pink-painted mouths, kohl-rimmed eyes and retro-cut swimwear.
Benson has yet to weigh in on the mini-controversy, though she did have an opinion in December when ABC Family released a heavily Photoshopped Pretty Little Liars promotional poster.
"Our faces in this were from 4 years ago.....and we all look ridiculous," she wrote on Instagram. "Way too much photo shop. We all have flaws. No one looks like this. It's not attractive."
But Bellisario continued to look on the bright side today, also writing: "I mean. Photoshopped or not. I work with three of the most gorgeous women on the planet. (Goddesses without hair and make up as well)@shaym @itsashbenzo @lucyhale #gq."