The Impact of Snapchat Beautifying Filters on Beauty Standards and Self-image: A Self-Discrepancy Approach


This study explores the problematic nature of Snapchat’s beautifying filters by presenting Saudi women’s perceptions of self-beauty and reactions to these face-perfecting filters, from satisfaction to self-discrepancy. It expands the existing literature on Snapchat filters to users from Eastern regions. It uses the self-discrepancy theory to show the impact of perceived discrepancies between the actual and ideal self in facial images that use Snapchat filters, showing its impact on beauty standards and emotions. This study demonstrates the tension between the temporary satisfaction and confidence boost provided by filters and the simultaneous self-discrepancy that affects some women negatively. The study utilizes "social distant” method of research. It is based on interviews conducts on ten Saudi women. The study emphasized the role of personality, self-beauty confidence, and faith in shaping the intensity of the impact. The results show a fluctuation in women’s perceptions of the effect of filters on beauty standards, from filters merely emphasizing well-known standards to promoting new ones, causing women to enhance their actual self to reach an idealized look. This study argues that, to some extent, Snapchat filters are fake, unpleasant, and distorting.

Author Information
Rania M. Alsaggaf, University of King Abdul Aziz, Saudi Arabia

Paper Information
Conference: ECAH2021
Stream: Arts - Media Arts Practices: Television

This paper is part of the ECAH2021 Conference Proceedings (View)
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Posted by amp21