Read this the next time you compare yourself to a woman on Instagram.
For most of us, our Instagram apps are with us from the moment we wake up to the moment we fall asleep. It has quickly developed into more than just an application on our phones—it’s a platform for self-expression, inspiration, connectivity, and creativity. Even more than that, Instagram is limitless and entirely what you, the user, makes of it. With this freedom can come a lot of positivity, but it can also reap a lot of negative repercussions in the way that we view our own lives in comparison to what we see online.
Although Instagram is a platform to display beautiful pictures for people to like, share and comment on, it’s photo editing qualities have quickly developed into an unhealthy obsession in the online beauty realm. According to a survey conducted by Dove, “1,027 women between the ages of 18 and 64 are more than twice as likely to say that their conception of their own beauty is shaped by social media” and the women who dominate Instagram. The majority of this survey sample felt that these people did not portray a realistic depiction of life or the way women looked in real life.
In fact, a sizable portion of the women who contribute to this obsession of using perfect angles, flawless lighting, and endless photo editing apps to portray “a sense of online perfection” are promoting beauty products that they were paid to post. Unfortunately, these details aren’t always disclosed to their followers to create the illusion of effortless selfies with little to no editing or time required. Whenever we find ourselves comparing our self-image to women online, we need to remember this hard-hitting reality because too many people forget.