No doubt you’ve read a lot about apps like Facetune. No doubt many of you reading this already have one of them (and there are many) downloaded on your phone. There is Facie, Facetune, Love Your Selfie and Perfect365, the list goes on…
They have been called out on a lot of issues; promoting insecurities in young women, encouraging the damaging quest for perfection, erasing individuality and spurring on the terrible selfie culture.
I’m afraid, dear reader, these apps are guilty of all of the above and more but at the same time it is kind of incredible what you can do to a photograph of yourself with one. If you have ever used Photoshop then you’ll know that the app’s capabilities are laughably limited – there are no levels and no layers. This is photoshopping for the masses, designed with tools to perfect yourself in an extremely rudimental way.
I’m going to talk you through some retouching I did to myself on Facetune (done for the purpose of this article of course, ahem….) and how it made me feel.
1. The original image. Not much make-up on, a little bit of bad skin today. What do I like about myself? My eyes, my skin. What do I dislike about myself? How long have you got? My jawline, my nostrils, my small lips, my eyes that are too high up.
2. So the first change that you can make to yourself is skin texture. The smoothing tool allows you to completely eradicate any pores. Like completely obliterates them. I now realize I’m not sure my skin did look all that good before.
3. Next you can sharpen your eyes to a glass-like shine with the Details tool. Once you’ve seen this in action you’ll start to notice it more in other people’s selfies. I love how blue and clear my eyes are here – I could see how this could be useful on hangover selfies…
4. I’m not sure you can notice this but I have used the Reshape tool to shorten the end of my nose and straighten my jawline, where it is usually a little rounded. At this point I got a bit of a serotonin spike – I look quite nice now don’t I? Uh oh, I guess this is the addictive stuff. If you press the button on the right hand side of the screen it takes you back to your original self – quite depressing.
5. Bigger lips – just what I’ve always wanted. Not exactly how I would want them though, I can’t seem to get the tool to make them bigger realistically. I look a bit like I have had dodgy fillers. I’ll plough on.
6. Time for a filter. I have chosen something soft, that bleaches my skin out further. Nice.
7. Pumping the cheekbones up now. Miranda Kerr or just a bit wrong?? I suppose this is what I would look like with cheek implants. (This makes me think about normalising the sight of myself with cheekbones like this and how it might make me feel about having implants. Scary stuff.)
8. Just to show you what you can do with the reshape tool… Tadaaah! A razor sharp jawline. At this point I feel I have actually forgotten what I look like in real life. Do I look quite like this? Or have I lost my mind? I flick back to the original image and am alarmed to see I look VERY different in reality. Alarmingly like a Disney Princess. I suppose the real question is, if you saw the final image on it's own on Instagram - would you think it was real?