Don't get me wrong, I love instagram as much as the next coffee-drinking selfie-obsessed girl. But sadly, there comes a point where I have to admit my amaro-tinted glasses need to be removed, for the good of everyone.
My insta-revelation came as I helped a friend to set up a Tinder account, and it came to choose some pictures for her profile. We went for some cute, flawlessly posed selfies, a fun group picture and then I suggested a full length taken from before a night out the week before. She was begrudging, but eventually gave in,
"ok but let me edit it first."
Now I thought edit meant a nice soft filter, maybe adjust the brightness and sharpen slightly for optimum photo quality. How wrong I was. I watched in awe as my friend opened an app, and started pinching at the screen. I realised with shock that she was editing her curves, making her arms thinner - creating a completely fake alien version of herself with weirdly skinny legs. I asked why, grabbing the phone off her while saying "but you're beautiful, you don't need to change! That's not you."
"I only do it on some. I don't really care in real life so there's no point exercising, I just want my pictures to look good."
This, ladies and gentleman, is the insta-apocalypse. I blame Kim Kardashian. First she showed us we can change our bone structure with a bit of artful contour, and now her immaculate instagram is ruining us. Though I'd like to believe that celebrities instagram just like I do...flicking through filters and posting without a second thought...the reality is every picture is probably photo shopped, filtered, and doctored to within an inch of it's life. In a world where we judge based on the visual, our instagram profile is becoming almost as important as our credit rating. (Arguably more so, because I have no idea what my credit rating is but I definitely have 356 followers on @BethHursty. Not that I care. Even a little bit. Honest.)
Even though I don't personally choose to edit my photos to the extreme, my instagram is far from realistic. I'll post a picture in full make-up, going out surrounded by friends, but not the morning after, swaddled in my duvet at 3pm, eyeliner down my cheeks and cheesy chips in my hair. A photo of my room got 31 likes, but usually my bed is unmade, with clothes, dirty plates and books all over the floor because I'm too stressed to tidy it. A nice lunch with my friends I'll post, but not my usual dry smelly tuna pasta in a tub that I inhale in between lectures. Life doesn't come with an automatic Valencia filter, and that's ok.
I'm trying not to over-think things. My instagram will never be one of the greats - with thousands of likes because of a cohesive monochrome colour scheme and pictures of ~cool things~. Lets all stop trying to live up to the high expectations of insta-celebs, photo shopped images and a world that always tells us we have to be perfect. While there's nothing wrong with a meticulously arranged photograph of your candles with the caption "Cosy winter night ❄", it is also absolutely fine to post a disgusting picture of you and your friends because it's funny, despite it only getting 3 likes (from the 3 people in the photo.) I want to look back at my instagram nostalgically on the pretty parts of my life, the times I want to remember, not the times I made better by an app. Likes aren't love, but I am a work in progress. Though I'm trying to reflect my real life on my profile, that doesn't mean I'll be putting away the Gingham filter any time soon.
Original post can be found on: https://bethhurstwrites.wordpress.com/2016/01/27/i-am-more-than-my-instagram-profile/
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