Instagram Kills Confidence
By Jessie Brunett
I have always been worried about what other people think. I’ve heard that when you turn 25, things get easier, you figure out who you are, and it becomes a beautiful transformation, but I haven’t found mine yet. Instagram has made everything so much more confusing.
When I’m trying to find something to wear, I now turn to social media “cure all’s” to solve my entire outfit woes. I think, hey that looks cute, maybe I can copy it because my pile of clothes is a mile high and I don’t have anything to wear. Sound familiar?
Instagram has become a cornerstone for promoting fast fashion, high beauty standards and the ability to promote unoriginal people. Amidst all this, I still have an Instagram account, it’s more fluid for me, Facebook has become too consumed with news stories and information, Twitter too political, but that’s for another story.
Instagram confuses me, and kills my confidence in the process. I feel like I’ve gracefully come out of my awkward fashion phase of 8th grade toe socks with sandals and oversized hoodies, but Instagram makes sure I am confused, actually it’s like that one friend that tells you that you look beautiful, but she’s telling the bartender how needy you are and that you’ve worn that dress three days in a row? Yeah. That’s Instagram. Instagram’s the passive-aggressive frenemy.
Before I know it, I’m 22 instagram accounts deep, forgetting that i’m supposed to be trying to find an outfit, and instead wasting my time gawking at stylish girls on my phone screen. How can I even compare? What are hot dog legs even? How can these girls be this tan in the middle of December? How come my hair isn’t as shiny as a washed car? Humph. My mind has tricked me into thinking that technology is supposed to help me find an outfit easier. With the touch of a button I should have everything figured out, so why does it feel like I’ve dived into a pile of my own clothes? Instagram has become the social media black hole for deep insecurities, shame and constant neediness to be alike and unison.
Problem is, I don’t want to be in unison with anybody. Half the women I follow for outfit inspiration, I don’t even have access to all of the clothing items they have to be able to switch it up all the time, so I’m stuck feeling inadequate anyways. I finally pick out an outfit and what follows is a parade of stress, armpit sweat, and that voice in my head the keeps telling me that I look ridiculous, like Gollum from Lord of the Rings, all day I feel like I have two personalities because I’m trying to be someone else, instead of who I am.
I’m comparing myself to photo shopped girls and filtered clothing. Look up any Instagram account with more than 1 M followers and you’ll either find Tom Ford, or some teenager who has mastered the art of photo shop, great lighting and not one imperfection, even in her rose pink Adidas. They’re shoes, friends, shoes should be dirty.
I’m trying to get the courage to highlight my stretch marks, inconveniently placed freckles and stringy hair. Instagram is a great tool, in waves, but I’ve got to tell ya, I can’t help but feel as lost as I am in my own room consumed piles and piles of my own clothes.
Just think about it, there are millions and millions of Instagram accounts that post pictures daily, that’s millions of people looking, judging, liking, and making assumptions on one picture. The pressure to be perfect is at a high standard, and most of us don’t even realize it. Original content is underrated, and put to the wayside to chase the perfect body, style and skin tone.
My confusion will probably never go away, I’m a 90’s kid, and even though I grew up on the tail end of technology reaching it’s social media peak, I’m still a new comer on apps like Instagram, in fact, I feel this way because girls younger than me have already mastered and achieved 1.1M followers, and if you combined all of my social media friends from all of my different social media sites, I still would not reach that immense number.
The ways i’m controlling this mass social media hysteria? I tell myself, don’t be late, treat yourself to a good breakfast, get off social media and find your own inspiration. Who says you can’t be the leading style lady? You’ve got the power, and you don’t even know it. We can’t get rid of the phenomenon of Instagram perfection girl trends, and I don’t think technology will ever slow down. It is okay to feel confused about who you are sometimes, but no one, not even Instagram has a right to dictate your style.
Stop following the skewed social media diet, and eat that doughnut, let your style come naturally, it’s okay to binge once and a while, but you also have to keep your health in check, and that bodes true for navigating your self worth through Instagram.
We aren’t carefree anymore, and girls everywhere are losing their sprinkles that make them unique and special to Instagram.