What would you do to look perfect to the outside world? Many have started to become someone else in a picture just to look “good” by societies standards.
Not a single one of these people in this video would be recognizable in person based of the pictures we see on their Facebook. The Situation (Michael Sorrentino), who they compared the first picture with the sideways abs to, was a Jersey Shore star in 2009. He did nothing but focus on his appearance and impressing females. He is just one of the comparisons made because of the creative photoshop fails. This constant change in appearance is due to the active use of filters and photoshop apps such as iMore to make them look completely different than they did to begin with.
Our selfies are evolving just as fast we are. Mona Lisa in this photo is also including herself on the trend of “ducklips” and a selfie (Mona Lisa Duck Lips). We often blame the way we look in person compared to our selfies to a bad angle or some external factor to not show negative body image perception of ourselves. “Some estimate that more than 1 million selfies are posted on social media each day, and that 36 percent of people admit to altering them,” (Chambers). Now that estimate is way more than most expect, but the number could still be much higher than reported.
We often blame society for the way we want to look because of what we are submerged into on Facebook and Instagram. This blame causes negative perceptions of ourselves instead of looking at how we can change it. Sam Bowman, Deputy Director of Adam Smith Institute, expresses the blame many put on society for negative body image his tweet below (Sam Bowman << Adam Smith Institute).
Our massive use of social media has created easy access to millions of photos in seconds. Instagram and Facebook are among the most used today in teens (Guimarães). This rise in usage has also led to jealousy because someone didn’t “like” a picture posted on social media or comment saying how great we looked in the picture. In a study done at the School of Psychology at Flinders University, Australia examining body image in adolescent females 12-16 found “40 percent were dissatisfied with their bodies and half were terrified of gaining weight,” (Allen).
Instagram is all about the pictures posted and how many people like them. That pressure alone causes many to focus on how they look since they don’t want to make their lives seem dull or themselves look bad compared to others. Walking around campus, I’ve overheard girls talking about the amount of likes their picture got on Instagram compared to their followers and being very disappointed because the cool ratio was wrong.
Many have looked to society to blame because they are the reason we have access to all of this right? No, we choose to follow these fitness pages on Instagram and compare ourselves to them. Mike Saad talks about how we are all blaming society but still follow different accounts to help us conform to that “ideal” body image (Saad, Mike (mikejsaad)).
America, you’re sending girls a mixed message. On one hand, you’re saying to have positive body image and love who we are; on the other, we’re being marketed makeup and clothing that obviously turns us into someone different.
Having a negative body image can lead to many mental health disorders. These different disorders can start at a young age and a lot of the ideas come from parents that are self-conscious teaching that to their children without realizing (Fisher, Meghan, and Birch) This disorders are closely related to different types of eating disorders and depression. The National Eating Disorders website gives a denotative definition of body image; it also allows for further exploration of negative and positive body image along with ways to prevent or diagnose both. P!nk demonstrates some of these disorders in her video below.
At the end of the day, we are all human. The pictures we see on Facebook and Instagram are not of real people but of someone in an exact moment in time who will never look that exact way again. No longer should we compare ourselves to these photos and learn to love the body we have or to change it in a healthy way to achieve fitness over becoming “skinny”.