Vain Celebs + High Def TV = Fodder for Jokes

On tonight's 30 Rock, Liz (Tina Fey) begins work on her new show, Dealbreakers. "Let's try the HD camera," says Jack (Alec Baldwin), in the promo. For a split second, we see what can only be described as a wicked witch version of Liz--hairy moles, dark circles, the works. Like so much of 30 Rock's humor, it's poking fun at life behind the scenes in the TV industry.

And it's no big secret that HD technology, which transmits images six times clearer than normal TV, is no friend to beauty-obsessed Hollywood celebrities. But starlet grumbling hasn't prevented it from becoming a standard TV viewing option.

A few years ago, Fey was quoted in Wired magazine about being shot in HD, and she didn't mince words. "HD video is beautiful for sports, but it doesn't help comedy, and it doesn't help humans," she said. "I hate being shot on HD video, because I look like two Frankensteins raped a Dracula."

Hollywood always prevails, though. Makeup artists have developed ways to thwart the evil HD. The first is airbrushing, a method that uses pricey equipment to spray the makeup on, instead of applying with a sponge or brush. This covers even the stuff (wrinkles, age marks...) that HD likes to bring to the audience's attention. The second is HD makeup, a new generation of beauty products that contain light-reflecting particles (which apparently blur the appearance of fine lines, etc.).

Naturally, HD makeup is being marketed to the general public now. "Hey if it looks great on cameras that can magnify everything, why not in person?" says Kevin Bennett, an Emmy award winning makeup artist quoted in The Truth About High Def Makeup, an article on And hey, Tina, if you're interested, the story also lists brands, like Christian Dior, that carry HD makeup. Good luck with that.

Do you think actresses look worse on HD? Chime in below!

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