#NoFilter

I’ve Been Living Under a Rock – What Are Filters?

Let’s take a second to discuss the trend that has swept through the nation: filters. Brought to us by Snapchat, these are digitally altering effects that can be used to make you look like anything, from a dalmatian, to even a rainbow-puking baby.

 

Why Are We So Obsessed with Them?

Yes, we all call them a ‘bit of fun’, but essentially, filters have split into two very distinct categories: some are ‘Joke Filters’. These are the ones that nearly distort your whole face, making it obvious that the selfie isn’t intended to look attractive, simply funny. For example, the ones that perhaps make your face look like a giant raspberry, or a dancing panda etc.

However, the second category is more sinister – ‘No-Filter Filters’. These ones retain an element of cartoonish fun, for example dog ears, whilst digitally enhancing your face in subtle ways. For instance, the famed ‘Flower Crown’ filter narrows your jawline and nose, smooths out your forehead, widens your eyes, plumps your lips and even throws in a free set of grey contact lenses to boot. Whilst all of these may seem like obvious alterations, when put together with the guise of a flower crown being the centre of attention, these subtle changes are easily overlooked.

 

Beauty Inflation

Go through your Snapchat stories. Count the number of times you see a selfie posted without a filter – not many, huh?. So many people are now coming forward saying they feel uncomfortable to post a selfie without a filter. Why? Because these filters have re-defined what ‘beauty’ is. They have created a world where everyone is ‘beautiful’ and therefore to post a selfie without a filter automatically puts you below your filter-sporting counterpart.

But how can we conform to these beauty standards? As a generation, we should be celebrating all types of beauty; small eyes, wide nose, prominent jaw and all! But now, such features are being hidden by the contortion of pixels, designed to re-arrange your face into something completely, unnoticeably new. And the scariest part is, these filers are making us all look the same.

 

It’s All About Inner Beauty

Your use of a filter creates a domino effect, whereby the next person may feel more inclined to use one in order to keep up with this ever-inflating sense of beauty that Snapchat has created. It’s time to act. Stop using these filters and slowly we can normalise what beauty means again. We can learn to accept the wrinkles on our foreheads and the natural colour of our eyes. So, instead of spending time hiding behind a mask on social media, let’s focus on getting our inner beauty ‘on fleek’.

 

 

 

What do you think – would you be able to abandon your favourite filter?

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#HowToBeInstaFamous

  1. Have a talent. Like a real talent such as being able to smize really well or pose perfectly no matter the stares from onlookers asking you to kindly not take that photo in the middle of the restaurant – or road for that matter.
  1. Invest in a photography degree with a specialism in Photoshop. No one becomes #InstaFamous with wrinkly elbows or food stuck in their teeth.
  1. A degree in English is also a must. Spelling errors are a minefield for trolls and a good caption can act as a serious driver for those quality likes.
  1. Be rich. If you’re not driving a car worth approximately $70,000, then how is anyone expected to appreciate your manicure in its full beauty when held up against your steering wheel?
  1. If the above isn’t possible (as of yet), at least be friends with rich people. Better yet, be friends with any one of the Kardashians and the fame will follow.
  1. Have pretty friends. Gone are the times when we became friends with people based on our compatibility. Now, we are in an era where the attractiveness of your friends is linked to our own attractiveness. If you can’t post endless, stunning candids with your BFFs, are they really your friends?
  1. Be a professional Make-up Artist. If you can’t contour with a knife, what do you think you’re doing on social media?
  1. Have the body of a Greek god without actually putting in work because you’re too busy taking selfies whilst in the free weights section. On the flip side, all you eat is kale, chicken and have a lifetime supply of detox-tea.
  1. Above all, you need to actually care.

 

 

These are just a few handy hints to get you on the path to #InstaFame, but if you can think of your own, add them in the comments section below!

 

#Followers

Because who needs friends when you have followers, right?

We as a generation are obsessed with that little number underneath our name every time we log into the likes of Twitter and Instagram. Do we see it as a measure of our popularity? Because surely if that was the case, we’d be avidly watching our friend count on Facebook, sending out random invitations and liking the cover photos of people we don’t know. But we don’t. So what does that say about us? Essentially we have come to value the appraisal of people who only know us over the internet, more than people who actually know us the old-school, face to face type of way.

Followers ≠ Friends

It’s hard not to be a victim (or perpetrator, depending on how you look at it) of this issue. Social media has found a way to quantify how much people like “you” and have made this information public to the world. Be honest, imagine the last time you met someone and found out afterwards that they had a huge online following, did you find yourself comparing their follower count to yours? Those extra few pixels on a screen can damage self-esteem within a matter of seconds – not only that, but they can change your perception of people. Would you see someone with 1 million followers the same way you’d treat someone with 57? Probably not, because social media is giving you the message that they are inherently more liked than you, therefore superior – as proven by those damned little pixels.

Sad, right? Now let’s get back to boosting our followers.

 

 

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