Do the Snapchat filters promote body negativity?

Now, I know you all do not know about my preferences in life, or what I think the ideal society is. I would not consider myself to be on either extreme of the left/right political spectrum because I believe that both sides have their fatal flaws that I cannot agree to. I agree that moderation can be applied in other places, such as the political environment. Will I get into a political rant? No. I often do, especially since I am going to school for political science (and also psychology). But no. That is not a discussion for today, but another day. I must build up my trust from you. I need you all to trust me more in order to discuss deeper issue ideals. The title tells you exactly my intention in this post, but do not let it think that I am a body positivity activist. I do have the ideal body type, and I am currently trying to work to get there. And I do have my preferences in what I look for in my women as far as their body goes.

First, let me get started with me saying that I am in no way a person that believes you should be happy with your body no matter where you are in the level of fitness or bodyfat percentage. In this politically correct era, with people my age promoting relative truths to everyone, I have to stand up for what is rationally right. See, people my age get too worked up and offended by small things. They push to have safe spaces and force a “tolerate” attitude toward other people. The irony is they are not tolerate if you happen to be conservative… Anyways, body positivity. I do not promote someone to promote to be as skinny as they can physically be without dying. To want to look like the anorexic ballerinas, or anorexic European models is not a healthy goal. Now notice the key words that I used in the last statement. It was actually one word – Anorexic. Anorexia is not healthy, and I personally saw someone I loved very much be affected by it. Her struggle with wanting to not gain weight would bring her to points she would be sub-100s. Now she was a short girl, but being under 100, according to her BMI and knowing her bodyfat percentage, that was dangerous. She was borderline in the unhealthy, dangerous zone. And everyone told her that she was extremely skinny, and eventually I was able to convince her to eat more calories. It was hard and often times she would “forget” to eat that day. Or she would say she was not hungry. Her struggle was hard to see.

But I have seen the other side of the spectrum. My whole family has had problems with carbohydrate processing, and weight gain their whole life. Hispanics tend to have that in the United States because of the high glycemic diet, high carbohydrate diet. I know a man (I keep his identity a secret), that his problem was he was too heavy. I weighs only 10 lbs more than me, but his body fat percentage is significantly higher than mine, and also he’s much shorter than me so the distribution is not good. He has been struggling with diabetes for a while now. And it got to the point of having to take insulin and getting experimental medicine that should have helped him lose hunger and lose weight. Well he found that as an excuse to be able to shove more food in his mouth. Is not active, and eats a lot. I think my family is plagued with the disposition of low dopamine. I feel like we have problems with addiction, and doing these addictive things bring us better feelings of well being. I know that the only times I can find true comfort is when I have just stuffed myself with a few bowls of cereal, all the way to the point where my stomach physically hurts from the stretch. It just feels good, and I know that with this man, he has replaced his alcoholism with food. Should he have body positivity and feel good in the body he has right now? NO! He could die from many things that are related to his obesity. He could have clogged arteries, the diabetes could get him with extremely high blood sugar, or he could stop breathing in his sleep from his worsened sleep apnea.

My main point is, the Victoria Secret models are not an unattainable physique for women. Most of them work hard at their workouts and diets in order to get to where they are at. And yes, there have been some that have been caught doing unhealthy practices to get to where they are at, but guess what? Its not allowed. And say goodbye to your modeling for them. Just look up the Victoria Secret regimen for many of the models. And stop shaming them for their hard work. But this brings me to the next point, there are agencies and fashion shows that turn the other way when it comes to these unhealthy practices. They might even encourage it with their exclusivity. I am looking at you Europe. That is bad. Do not try to achieve the anorexic body that many models and ballerinas have been doing, but also do not shame other models for your insecurities within your own body. Feel good with trying to improve your health. Running and eating right will help you in the long run, especially if you find yourself extremely overweight. I support a healthy lifestyle, and Victoria Secret models do not go against that, but being anorexic or overweight does.

So what does this have to do with snapchat? Ever since snapchat has been using these face tracking filters, you bet many of your friend’s snapchat stories have been full of them. I have used them all to see what they do, and man some make me look real good! I can maintain is sick molder stare, and make hearts sink with one look. But why is this? Is it because of the change of color in filter? Well lets look at the two that have personally victimized me: the puppy filter and the butterfly/flower crown filter.

What do these two filters do? To start off you notice that your looking a lot nicer. Is it because dog ears instantly make you a 10? Nope. But is your skin softer? Yes. The filters soften your skin to remove blemishes. The crown filters go a bit further to lighten the skin tone making blemishes even less noticeable. Now is this inherently wrong? Well many women wear make up to cover their blemishes and to lighten their skin tones. No I do not find this to be all that bad. But all things in moderation. I am guilty of using an app that I have financial interest in. I use Tinder, and I have stock in the Match Group, which own Tinder. 7 times out of 9 (I like weird fractions), I see girls with mostly snapchat filters or all snapchat filters. There is an inherent problem with this. It is not bad to have one one there, or to like the filters for the purposes of sending a few to some friends or a prospective other, but using them all the time brings up the question, what was wrong with their original face? There are insecurities within many people that make them use these filters to change their faces to make them look better. They are afraid their true selves are not beautiful enough. This is on top of the makeup, which is not usually bad. The filter does not stop there, the filters also do one very subtle, but impactful thing: they slim your face down. I did not notice this one until I switched from the filters to regular face fast. The filters will slim your face and it looks good. This is something that is wrong. Its no different than taking pictures of yourself, going to photoshop (or another photo editing program) to change the shape of your physical features, and upload only the enhanced ones to your public profiles. People see this ideal you, but you are not that.

If you want a slimmer face, get it. Do not use an app to slim your face for a picture because once you meet that person that you like from the app, they might be disappointed at the lie that they have been believing the whole time. Let the people like you for you, and not for a photoshopped version of you. If you want a slim face, diet and exercise. Lose bodyfat to attain it in healthy ways. So when the people meet you, they see the same person they saw online. A picture can say 1000 words, but it can also hide 1000 pounds. What do you think? Does snapchat filters promote body negativity? Think about it.

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