As harmless as social media filters may seem, they are actually doing some harm in Dubai
1 October 2018| Last updated on 10 December 2018
Most social media filters can turn you green, give you a squished face or alter your voice but some people want a forever filter.
The most popular social media filters are the ones that airbrush our skin, slim your face and make your eyes wider.
Ultimately making you appear like a very edited (and unrealistic) version of yourself – and this has caused an odd trend to appear in Dubai.
Residents in the city are opting to physically alter their appearance with the help of plastic surgery and recently plastic surgeons in Dubai are actually turning away patients whose goal is to look like an extremely edited filter.
The plastic surgery market in Dubai is apparently witnessing a growing number of residents who are looking to undergo the knife to eventually look like their filtered selfies from Instagram and Snapchat.
The desire to resemble a filter is not just emerging in Dubai, a new study by the Boston University of Medicine has revealed that it’s apparent everywhere in the world and it is an actual medical condition called the Snapchat dysmorphia.
Snapchat dysmorphia is a psychological condition in which patients want to look like a filtered selfie of theirs but in real life – and Dubai plastic surgeons are reporting up to 10 patients who seek this service per month.
Reasons behind the real filters
Social media platforms don’t initially intend for filters to be more than just a method of entertainment but when users opt to alter their physical appearance, it hints at a larger problem.
The accessibility of these platforms, as well as free editing applications, have made it easier for anyone to edit their photos with no control.
That causes the users to retouch their photos to unachievable standards – covering pimples, slimming the face, airbrushing the skin, whitening the teeth and at times slimming the body too.
These actions can point at a number of things about the social media user:
- The lack of self-confidence
- To freeze their youth
- The need to fit in
- As a result of peer pressure
- Excess vanity
- To be accepted
- To be loved
- To be desired
Usually, the feedback received on the filtered images are usually more positive than natural photos, which can increase the need to look perfect.