Lets be real — we all enjoy adding a cheeky Snapchat filter to a selfie. Can you blame us? the dog filter makes our skin so smooth, and the flower crown effect hones our cheek bones like no makeup product can.
But there could be an underlying issue here, especially with excessive use of these filters. A new phenomenon, branded by scientists as 'Snapchat Dysmorphia', has emerged and it's changing the worldwide perception of beauty.
A study published by JAMA Facial Plastic Surgery Viewpoint has found apps like Snapchat and Facetune are adding to a new beauty norm on social media, with many people using filters and other airbrushing tools to tweak the way they look, often without anyone knowing.
As this continues, the worldwide perception of what is considered attractive can change, which can trigger body dysmorphic disorder, according to Dr Neelam Vashi, director of the Boston University Cosmetic and Laser Centre.
He told Independent that the apps were allowing users to achieve a level of physical perfection only seen before in celebrity or beauty magazines.
"A new phenomenon called 'Snapchat dysmorphia' has popped up, where patients are seeking out surgery to help them appear like the filtered versions of themselves."
He said plastic surgeons are seeing fewer people bringing in pictures of celebrities to base their surgery from, and more people bringing in edited images of themselves made via Snapchat and similar apps.
The study found a 30 per cent increase in patients who requested surgery to improve their appearance in selfies since 2015.
"It can be argued that these apps are making us lose touch with reality because we expect to look perfectly primped and filtered in real life as well," Vashi writes.
'Snapchat Dysmorphia', a term coined by Dr Tijion Esho, a cosmetic doctor at The Esho Clinic UK, affects both men and women, and is most common in teenagers and young adults.
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