Friday, 25 September 2015

Why I’ll Never Use Filtered Pics on My Blog… Here for Illustration Purposes Only!


You may have read about Bigorexia or “reverse anorexia” in the media this week. It’s an anxiety disorder where men see themselves as small, when in fact they are big and muscular. It is thought to be affecting a staggering one in ten men who regularly attend a gym in the UK – and it’s on the increase!

The cause isn’t known but some experts believe it could be due to genetics, or a chemical imbalance in the brain. That may be but I can’t help thinking that the growing selfie culture has a part to play too in this lack of body confidence and distorted sense of what we look like, in particular the growing use of filtered photos and Photoshopped Images on Instagram.

Flicking through Instagram a few days back I was struck by how ‘beautiful’ everyone was - and ripped in the case of men! Pic after pic of perfect bodies and flawless faces, with not a single open pore, fine line or pimple in sight. I got lost in this World of beauty for one moment, in my subconscious. Before I knew it I was checking out my own face in a nearby mirror and feeling utterly rubbish about it.

Granted, most people in the Insta pics were younger than me, but I’d never had skin quite like theirs, ever. I then jolted back into reality and moved on, knowing that what I had seen in the main wasn’t real. These were highly filtered and altered pics.

As a grown adult I can rationalise this and not be affected by it. But what worries me is how this obsession with wanting to project a perfect image of ourselves is going to harm my kids’ generation – I have two, aged 14 and 10.

Photo-edited pics in glossy mags is one thing (I hate that too but at least we all know a supermodel look is unobtainable for most of us) but when our peers are doing it to look 'perfect' in selfies, then the pressure on everyone to match-up becomes intense. Personally, I'd rather everyone be 'real'.

After all the media coverage this week and my Instagram moment, I decided to have a chat with my daughter, armed with the two selfie pics you can see above - one taken with a filter and one without. I took them with my Samsung tablet and the bog standard ‘beauty filter’ feature it comes pre-installed with.

Mine is not sophisticated equipment and yet I was startled at just how different my skin looks in the two pics. I showed hubbie before my daughter and he was even more shocked than I - Ok, enough of that! 

So, I had that chat with my 10-year-old daughter. She nodded and shrugged her shoulders before wandering back to her computer to watch her fave Minecraft Vloggers. I’m not sure that the message struck home, and that is what worries me!

What are your thoughts on beauty filters? Do you use them?
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20 comments

  1. I don't use them either. What you see is what you get x

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  2. This was so interesting to read - I'd never heard of Bigorexia before

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  3. I never use them. And I tend not to follow bloggers who do. Because what's the point, right?

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  4. I never red of bigorexia before, wow... so it's the same for some guys, they see themselves are imperfect... when they are totally OK, just not what magazines or TV show. Like magazines with airbrushed models for women. I think you did it so well talking to our daughter, To show what filters do. Well, I don't use Instagram, I don't even use a mobile these days, my own choice. I don't know how to use photoshop - my choice as well, so that I don't know how to make a picture better. But I never had skin problems and wrinkles, so I don't use filters in 99% of the photos - I did yesterday, to have a vintage atmosphere. Other than that, I say "you get what you see". I talked about it with a friend, and she says she photoshops all her pics, so that she erases wrinkles. She even told me "I am younger than you and I have wrinkles! So I use photoshop!" I felt so embarrassed. I insisted that with wrinkles or not, I prefer to look real. And that makeup is photoshop enough :) But I respect her opinions, of course. I liked your first photo very much and the photo didn't need any filter! Great topic, dear Tracey! I hope you have a great weekend!
    DenisesPlanet.com

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    1. Thank you Denise, as always. And yes, let's all 'be real'. Tx

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  5. Any really popular blogger out there with a huge amount of followers heavily photoshops their pictures. Even teenage girls!!

    http://vodkaandarose.blogspot.co.uk

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  6. http://quantumvisionsystemreview.com/the-language-of-desire-book-review/


    If you think mature women are no longer attractive, think again because not all men have their eyes on young women. Some men are attracted to mature women because of their independence and they are less likely to be clingy. Older women already know who they are, what they want, have more experiences, have more interesting stories, more confident and most importantly they are not dating to play games. There are men who prefer attracting mature women especially those who are ready to commit.

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    1. Roja, you are so right. Many men do prefer to date older women, for all the reasons you highlight. Tx

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  7. I live near a school so I often overhear children talking and it breaks my heart. It starts so early now. I've heard a primary school kids talking about wanting to have their eyebrows done, "thunder thighs" and how they're going to have plastic surgery (I don't recall at that age the slightest self conciousness about my body). I'm not sure that they realise every single image they see has been altered in some way so in now way should they be comparing themselves to that.

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    1. For kids to be talking this way at such a young age is worrying indeed. Tx

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  8. It's not easy when the society wants people beautiful, skinny and perfect. I don't use beauty filters.. I prefer change the lights :) we are who we are.. with spots and much more ! x

    www.aishettina.blogspot.it

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  9. I have made a conscious effort to not use filters on images of myself on my blog. This is not a vanity choice rather than I feel it is false representation when reviewing products. As a reader Im more likely to trust someones opinion if their pictures are not perfect. Great post I found you via 30plusblogs link up x

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  10. Your daughter will understand if you continue to show her how the pictures are modified. You had a great idea x

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