Girls star Lena Dunham has sworn off the use of Photoshop in shoots, saying she will "bid farewell to an era when my body was fair game".

The 29-year-old, currently recovering from a ruptured ovarian cyst, wrote in an essay for Lenny Letter on Tuesday that she "barely recognised herself" on the front cover of a recent Spanish magazine.

The picture, which Dunham said originally ran in Entertainment Weekly in 2013, altered the actress' skin and limbs."I wanted to tell people, loudly: 'That's not my body!"' Dunham wrote.

"Seeing the photo got me thinking about the real issue, which is that I don't recognise my own f***ing body anymore. And that's a problem."

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Dunham said she initially had no qualms with touched-up photos, despite her tendency to bare all on television.

"This was a kind of cognitive dissonance I didn't want to, and couldn't yet, consider," she wrote. She said "something snapped" when she saw the Spanish magazine's front cover.

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"Maybe it was the fact that I no longer understand what my own thighs look like," Dunham wrote.

"The gap between what I believe and what I allow to be done to my image has to close now.

"If that means no more fashion-magazine covers, so be it. Dunham declared said she was "your girl Friday" to any magazines willing to photograph her without touching-up the final product.

- AAP