Iskra Lawrence posts before-and-after photos to show the benefits of posing
Instagram can be a dangerous place. There are so many hypnotizing food porn videos, an overwhelming amount of dog celebrities and a handful of dank meme lords who just get you. I mean, yeah, you and your friends are on there too, but it's the stuff from seasoned Instagrammers that can really suck you in and try to make sure you never leave the platform.
Unfortunately, Instagram can truly be a dangerous place for women who are constantly exposed to images of gorgeous, flawless models. The number of followers these girls can rack up, as well as their ability to look sexy even when lounging around, eating pizza, in a sloppy sweater and those ugly, yellow-tinted grandpa glasses, is enough to make any female feel inadequate.
The industry for Instagram models and "influencers" is positively booming right now, so these brand-endorsing bombshells are not likely to disappear from the platform anytime soon. But as they become more mainstream, people are starting to realize that photos posted by Instagram models are not entirely "realistic".
Very often they involve photoshoots with professional lighting setups, carefully manipulated poses and camera angles, and hundreds of takes to choose from. And this is exactly what body-positive models like Iskra Lawrence want you to understand.
The 27-year-old from England has been modeling for 14 years, and she's made a name for herself in recent years for her dedication to spreading positive messages to women to celebrate all body types and be wary of idealized versions of "beauty".
She openly shares her own struggles with body image with her 3.7 million Instagram followers, often talking about how she has come to love her cellulite, veins, stretch marks, fat, breakouts and other preassigned "problem areas" through self care. "I was brainwashed by societal ideals and the medias expectations of perfection," she reveals.
And just last week, she gave us a brand new perspective into the modeling industry. In particular, the way models posing on social media are deceiving everyone.
"EXPOSING all the model poses on the gram in this weeks self-care Sunday video," says the caption, referring to a 7-minute video she uploaded to her YouTube channel. The Instagram post contains six images of before-and-after photos that reveal how models pose their bodies to dramatically change how they look in photos, something she demonstrates in real-time in the video.
Lawrence writes in the Instagram caption:
"I wanted to get super real and show u how drastically and instantly ppl can change how they look simply by posing! Let alone good lighting, high quality cameras and photoshop!
"I'm super excited to share this with you, I myself still pose and there's nothing wrong with moving your body in ways you feel most comfortable or confident but let's be honest and show the actual process."
Lawrence said she learned the poses in her 14 years of modeling. "These are all little, minute tricks and tips that I've naturally learned through the modeling industry," she says in the video, "But I feel like you guys deserve to know when you're looking at photos what's really going on."
In the video, she reveals the tricks models use to get the elusive "thigh gap" (physically impossible for many people, as pointed out by Lawrence herself) and how to make yourself look like you have smaller arms. She reveals another secret trick of touching your tongue to the roof of your mouth, causing a bit of strain to your chin and poof! your double chin is gone. "Everything is an illusion," she says.
She demonstrates the ever popular pose among Instagrammers called a "hip pop", saying, "it makes me look like I've got a huge butt". By leaning on one leg and sticking your hip out to the side, you can create a convincing optical illusion to enhance the size of your booty in photos. "It makes me feel powerful, strong and confident," she adds, "I don't think there's anything wrong with posing to feel that way."
Lawrence's before-and-after images, as well as the "instructional" video, are a nice reminder not to get too caught up in the overwhelming tide of seemingly perfect human specimen all over Instagram. They're using tricks to look a certain way, they've probably got their own insecurities too, and they're also not you.
It's important to remember this because, as Lawrence says, "Life's not perfect, social media lives aren't Perfect and neither are us or our bodies. And that's exactly how it's meant to be! Because we are all imperfectly perfect and 100% unique."