Above is a before and after of the shot I made with Marielle. Clearly, post processing has helped in hiding some skin imperfections as well correcting some mistakes I made when I shot the photo. I must admit, I am one of those who uses Orton effect to make my images more soft as well as make skin look smoother. The downside to this is color saturation tends to look over exposed and overall the photo loses sharpness (which is then compensated by increasing contrast).
Both photos above came from the same shoot but the photo on the left was processed before I took some online tutorials. Photo on the right would still not pass as a magazine cover in my opinion but as how the old cliche goes, practice makes perfect.