The computer-generated image shows what /*Princess Diana*/ might have looked like today.
The article inside was written by Diana biographer and Newsweek editor-in-chief Tina Brown. The piece imagines what Diana would have been like now.
"What would she have been like?" Brown writes of Diana, who would have turned 50 on Friday, nearly 14 years after her death in a Paris car crash. "Still great-looking: that's a given."
Several publications including the Los Angeles Times and Atlantic Wire questioned the controversial magazine cover.
Brown defended her decision, saying in a statement Tuesday that she "wanted to bring the memory of Diana alive in a vivid image that transcends time and reflects my piece."
The magazine's new issue also features an imagined Diana Facebook page and a slideshow comparing the fashion styles of Diana and /*Middleton*/, who married Diana's oldest child, /*Prince William*/, in April.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.