Studies on the impact of beauty filters on mental health are multiplying all over the world, but the finding remains the same: the public does not appreciate them and fears their harmful effects on self-esteem. A recent survey conducted in the United States reveals that part of the population would like to impose an age limit on their use, or even ban them.
Should beauty filters be banned on social networks? A question that many parents ask themselves, but not only, as revealed by a survey conducted by StyleSeat.
What impact do filters have on self-esteem?
The beauty and wellness booking platform asked 700 Americans to test the “Bold Glamor” filter, which guarantees a face without any imperfections, then asked them about their perception of popular beauty filters on social networks. And the finding is clear: three out of five people questioned believe that they are bad for mental health and 70% fear that they will have a negative impact on self-esteem.
Contrary to popular belief, the youngest are not more inclined to turn to beauty filters when they publish photos or videos on social networks, they at least dread the effects. Nearly three-quarters of Gen Z respondents (72%) consider these filters to have a negative impact on mental health. And for good reason, these applications that modify the appearance of users, often to meet certain standards of beauty, could be the source of complexes, even dysmorphophobia, which is characterized by an obsession with non-existent or imperceptible physical defects. The survey reveals that one in three Americans would like to look the same in real life as when admiring themselves with a beauty filter.
Imposing an age limit
Faced with this observation, the American population says they fear even more the impact of beauty filters on the mental health of the youngest. Many social platforms have rules and restrictions in place for younger people, especially teenagers and children under 16 (the age required to register depends on the country of origin). But that’s not about beauty filters. This is why one in three Americans now believes that these should be subject to an age limit, and one in five even considers that they should be completely banned.
It should be remembered that beauty filters totally modify the appearance according to very specific stereotypes: a flawless complexion, a fine nose, a perfectly sculpted chin and cheekbones, and a luminous look… A perception of beauty far removed from reality, and even more of the diversity of the world’s population. So it’s no surprise to learn that after viewing their face through the “Bold Glamour” filter, around 20% of respondents said they felt less confident. And an overwhelming majority (80%) already say that this type of filter has transformed beauty standards.
Good in your body, good in your head!
Heavy use of filters causing feelings of anxiety?
The impact of social media on mental health and self-esteem is not just a concern in the United States, as shown by a survey carried out by Edelman DXI for Dove, in collaboration with Mental Health Europe, and l e-Enfance association, published last spring. Conducted among the general population, but also parents, adolescents, and experts in the mental health of young people, it highlighted the growing concern of health professionals vis-à-vis the use of filters In Europe. More than half of them (52%) believed that content encouraging the intensive use of filters could be the source of feelings of anxiety, as well as those showing perfect or far from reality bodies ( 44%).