Did the teenagers fall on their heads? If they were previously reluctant to pose with the rest of the family during a festive occasion, now they are determined to spoil the photo by hiding part of their face. In any case, it is the phenomenon of the moment, the ‘nose cover’, and the reason why the youngest have succumbed to it might well surprise you…
Who says end of year celebrations, often says family photos. And it could be that these have recently been ruined by a nephew, a cousin, or even your own offspring, unwilling to smile as is customary. It’s not about making a face or making a grimace or showing impatience, but about hiding part of your face, in other words the nose, with your hand. A surprising gesture which has a name, the ‘nose cover’ (‘couvre-nez’ or ‘cache-nez’ in French), and which is gaining ground on social networks. Contrary to what one might think, teenagers use it for a very serious reason: they do not want to appear on their parents’ Facebook, Instagram or Snapchat accounts without having given their consent.
Avoiding taunts between teenagers
If she is not at the origin of this new trend, Venezuela Fury, the daughter of boxer Tyson Fury, has largely contributed to popularizing it around the world. The teenager recently appeared in several photos published on social networks, one hand in front of her face. The objective is obviously to be sufficiently hidden so as not to be recognized, or at least not to give other Internet users the opportunity to make fun. Because this is indeed the purpose of the ‘nose cover’: children are tired of appearing in their parents’ virtual photo albums, often viewed by the greatest number of people. And for good reason, these are photos over which they have no control (retouching, filters, and others) and which can give rise to ridicule from their friends, classmates, and other ordinary subscribers.
Faced with the constant solicitation of parents during special occasions, whether a birthday, a wedding or end-of-year celebrations, among others, adolescents rebel and resort to this simple gesture to avoid suffering the possible inconvenience caused by a family photo. And it is not necessarily the family nature of the photo that is called into question by the main parties involved, but the embarrassment that can be caused by a photo taken upon waking up, with an inappropriate outfit, or revealing what they can consider it a flaw or a characteristic that they simply do not wish to reveal to as many people as possible. Anything that could ultimately lead to potential mockery.
Communication, the key?
Interviewed by the New York Post, parenting expert Amanda Jenner explains: “It is important to remember that this phase is an integral part of growing up, where striving for independence and establishing personal boundaries are key stages of development“. And added: “It’s very sad that we can’t share and be proud of family photos, but unfortunately that’s how it is today“. A behavior undoubtedly accentuated by the multiplication of filters on social networks which perpetuate the cult of the perfect body and face.
By using ‘nose covering’, teenagers maintain control of their image without offending or antagonizing their parents. But the latter could use this trend to start a discussion with their offspring, whether around possible mockery suffered on social networks, on the diktats imposed by society, or more simply on their desire – or not – to appear on their social media.