'Toxic' new filter sparks backlash on social media

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By Nasima Khatun

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A new filter on TikTok has recently caused a stir amongst social media users due to its intense ability to change facial features while remaining practically undetectable.

Now, filters have been an ongoing trend ever since Snapchat made them popular back in 2011.

Fast forward 12 years and we've now got a range of wild filters, some more noticeable than others. From cute, little bunny ears to full-on glam makeup, it seems as though they've become a crucial staple in the world of social media.

Recently though, one filter has left us all speechless.

The 'Bold Glamour' filter on TikTok has been making the rounds across the video-sharing platform, with many pointing out just how realistic - but also totally unrealistic - it is.

Since it hit our phones last month, the filter has been downloaded over 16 million times as per Women's Health.

The outlet reported that due to its amazing agile ability to morph to anyone's facial features, as well as its general 'glow up' nature, it's the perfect concoction for a high-quality filter.

Luke Hurd, a creator of both Instagram and Snapchat filters, posted a video to TikTok, explaining why the Bold Glamour filter is as effective as it is.

He explained that "a traditional filter takes your two-dimensional screen in this little box [the phone screen] and then it overlays a face mesh on top that tracks to your face" but Bold Glamour "uses something called Generative Adversarial Network. They take an image of the user and then compare it to a data set of other images and then redraw your face, pixel by pixel, on the output of your camera feed."

And due to its complexity, it has now become a hot talking point online.

Some people were just amused by the results, like this user who wrote: "So today I saw all these people on TikTok using this bold glamour filter and freaking out. I normally don’t mess with them. But holy crap. I look 30 years younger and way better. Don’t use this for a missing person poster though. I don’t look like this," alongside two snapshots of herself.

And this user experimented with it too writing: "Yk that bold glamour filter on tik tok that supposedly makes you look super hot? yeah i look like a drag queen (with super dramatic makeup)."

However, others branded the tool as "toxic."

Social media user Joanna Kenny posted a video in which she showed the difference in her appearance after using the filter.

"I don't look anything like this but the filter itself looks natural," she said before comparing her face "before" the addition of the look. "I have done a lot of work to unlearn that I owe prettiness to anyone.

"I don't think my brain know how to deal with looking like this one minute," she added, before taking off the filter to show her real face, "and this next."

She concluded by saying: "Filtered skin is not a skin type."

In the caption she urged users to not use the filter, adding: "This is the viral filter everyone is using rn. Tell me honestly, have you ever not shown up irl because of how you’ve misrepresented yourself on social media?"

A comment under the clip read: "You’re soooo beautiful without the filter," remarked a fourth, while acknowledging the TikToker's point about it being toxic. "But I also appreciate what you said. It's very relatable."

Dr Phillippa Diedrichs, a Research Psychologist at the Centre of Appearance Research at the University of West England and body image expert, explained that there are a number of academic studies that have also found that the use of filters and selfie editing is associated with low body confidence, mood, and self-esteem.

"Research from Dove found that almost half of girls with lower body esteem feel they don't look good enough without photo editing. Moreover, filters have become part of everyday life for 52 percent of girls, and 77 percent try to change or hide at least one part of their body before posting a photo of themselves," she said.

"This suggests that the cumulative effect of filters and digital distortion over time is creating appearance pressures and low self-worth among girls and young women."

So the next time you're in the mood to use a filter when taking a selfie, maybe just leave it out because you're just as gorgeous as you are.

Featured Image Credit: Denis Kalinichenko / Alamy

'Toxic' new filter sparks backlash on social media

vt-author-image

By Nasima Khatun

Article saved!Article saved!

A new filter on TikTok has recently caused a stir amongst social media users due to its intense ability to change facial features while remaining practically undetectable.

Now, filters have been an ongoing trend ever since Snapchat made them popular back in 2011.

Fast forward 12 years and we've now got a range of wild filters, some more noticeable than others. From cute, little bunny ears to full-on glam makeup, it seems as though they've become a crucial staple in the world of social media.

Recently though, one filter has left us all speechless.

The 'Bold Glamour' filter on TikTok has been making the rounds across the video-sharing platform, with many pointing out just how realistic - but also totally unrealistic - it is.

Since it hit our phones last month, the filter has been downloaded over 16 million times as per Women's Health.

The outlet reported that due to its amazing agile ability to morph to anyone's facial features, as well as its general 'glow up' nature, it's the perfect concoction for a high-quality filter.

Luke Hurd, a creator of both Instagram and Snapchat filters, posted a video to TikTok, explaining why the Bold Glamour filter is as effective as it is.

He explained that "a traditional filter takes your two-dimensional screen in this little box [the phone screen] and then it overlays a face mesh on top that tracks to your face" but Bold Glamour "uses something called Generative Adversarial Network. They take an image of the user and then compare it to a data set of other images and then redraw your face, pixel by pixel, on the output of your camera feed."

And due to its complexity, it has now become a hot talking point online.

Some people were just amused by the results, like this user who wrote: "So today I saw all these people on TikTok using this bold glamour filter and freaking out. I normally don’t mess with them. But holy crap. I look 30 years younger and way better. Don’t use this for a missing person poster though. I don’t look like this," alongside two snapshots of herself.

And this user experimented with it too writing: "Yk that bold glamour filter on tik tok that supposedly makes you look super hot? yeah i look like a drag queen (with super dramatic makeup)."

However, others branded the tool as "toxic."

Social media user Joanna Kenny posted a video in which she showed the difference in her appearance after using the filter.

"I don't look anything like this but the filter itself looks natural," she said before comparing her face "before" the addition of the look. "I have done a lot of work to unlearn that I owe prettiness to anyone.

"I don't think my brain know how to deal with looking like this one minute," she added, before taking off the filter to show her real face, "and this next."

She concluded by saying: "Filtered skin is not a skin type."

In the caption she urged users to not use the filter, adding: "This is the viral filter everyone is using rn. Tell me honestly, have you ever not shown up irl because of how you’ve misrepresented yourself on social media?"

A comment under the clip read: "You’re soooo beautiful without the filter," remarked a fourth, while acknowledging the TikToker's point about it being toxic. "But I also appreciate what you said. It's very relatable."

Dr Phillippa Diedrichs, a Research Psychologist at the Centre of Appearance Research at the University of West England and body image expert, explained that there are a number of academic studies that have also found that the use of filters and selfie editing is associated with low body confidence, mood, and self-esteem.

"Research from Dove found that almost half of girls with lower body esteem feel they don't look good enough without photo editing. Moreover, filters have become part of everyday life for 52 percent of girls, and 77 percent try to change or hide at least one part of their body before posting a photo of themselves," she said.

"This suggests that the cumulative effect of filters and digital distortion over time is creating appearance pressures and low self-worth among girls and young women."

So the next time you're in the mood to use a filter when taking a selfie, maybe just leave it out because you're just as gorgeous as you are.

Featured Image Credit: Denis Kalinichenko / Alamy