Unpacking The Effects Of Instagram On Our Self Confidence

Instagram made it easier to keep up with our friends and family and update everyone about what is going in our lives. But it also allowed us to edit and bend reality for a few likes.

Instagram has been A great platform for us to share our stories and communicate and interact with people, even celebrities worldwide. But it has also been a way for us to distort reality.

We have been using filters to modify our images and make them look unique. It helps us get likes, and that might be destroying our self-perception.

Beauty Standards


Taking pictures has been a way for us to Immortalize the most memorable moments in our lives. It has never been a bad thing.

But we have started using filters to modify everything. Sunsets are beautiful as they are, yet we add filters to enhance their colors and make them more beautiful.


The industry has even gone father and made filters that can distort our faces. Putting us through a standard beauty filter has made us conscious of features we might have loved before.

Beauty standards have constantly been changing, especially for women’s bodies. It follows a trend, And with easy access to plastic surgery, it makes it attainable for women to fit in to conform to the current standard of beauty.

Social Media


We use our social media platforms as forms of personal advertisement, all for the exchange of likes! It didn’t even change during the lockdown; in fact, our use of social media actually increased!

Social media influences beauty, fashion, and hair trends, and that’s where we go to keep ourselves updated on these topics. You can go online and find tutorials and inspiration almost anywhere you look!

We showcased our trials and tribulations on the platforms, but we hide behind a filter a lot of the time. Maybe it was because we weren’t camera-ready; perhaps it just gave us comfort that people perceive us in a filtered way.

Photoshop And Filters


Photoshop also becomes a standard process before images get posted on social media. People spend time altering the images from the features on their faces to the shape of their bodies to become more appealing.

Photoshop has even been used but make-up artists to complete a look and add final blending touches. It makes you wonder if anything that you have seen on your feed has actually been real.


Models and influencers have tried to show us what exactly happens behind the scenes. They wanted to show us how their flaws are touched up before posted and how their makeup actually looks without an Instagram filter.

We even buy phones according to how great the camera is because we want our pictures to look great. So we opt for phones that have a built-in filter.

It’s also difficult not to buy into editing your pictures because you find that images that have been edited and modified and had filters added end up with more likes. So the reward system favors filters and edits.


Being exposed to a  reward system that favors filters and edits can actually be bad for teenagers and young adults. It can lead to mental health issues like anxiety, depression, and body dysmorphia which can follow them well into adulthood.

Insecurities about your body can even lead you to seek a permanent solution like plastic surgery. And it can become addictive and dangerous if you keep changing parts of your body.


Plastic surgeons and fitness instructors have even said that clients come to them with photo-shopped and filtered images of themselves as inspiration. They are trying to force themselves to meet unrealistic expectations.

Scrolling through social media is inevitable; you’re going to sit there and look at Memes follow up on your friends and family. You just can’t stop doing it, but you can control the content that you see.

So fill your feed with content that makes you feel happy and secure about your looks. Look at content that is inspiring and if you can limit your social media time in hopes of preserving your mental health.

Written By:
Dr Saadiqah Hajat

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