AI Filters Are Creepy and I Love Them
Is Tiktok getting too good at filters?
The HOT Teenage and Bold Glamour filters are some of the first on the platform to use AI, explaining their propensity to be almost TOO convincing.
These filters use facial recognition and machine learning algorithms to identify and manipulate facial features. Their impressive technology is quickly approaching uncanny valley or Black Mirror status, as it both changes face shape, nose & lip size, while looking far too convincing without the usual ghosting and clipping we have been used to on standard filters.
Do some members of society feel unfairly “fooled” by women who use these filters? Yes, but this was never about them. It’s about how we feel in our own skin when the face reflected back at us doesn’t look the same.
I DO NOT look like myself with either filter, but that’s OK. The version of myself on social media wasn’t ever really me anyway. I enjoy the illusion of presentability without all the hours of effort it would go into actually putting my face on.
But what about women and girls who feel pressured to go through the physical transformation IRL?
Do beauty filters hurt women?
By contributing to a higher bar for beauty standards, it’s easy to see the why and the how. Filters create unrealistic expectations of what women should look like, leading to feelings of inadequacy and low self-esteem, no matter how drop-dead gorgeous they are naturally. Filters in general can also perpetuate harmful beauty ideals, such as the notion that lighter skin or more Eurocentric facial features are more desirable.
I noticed my skin a few shades paler with the Bold Glamour option and immediately said, “that’s not me,” but I’m over 30 and didn’t grow up with the technology.
Do women feel better after using them? I mean, I do. As with any form of technology and social media, it's important to prioritize self-care and mental health over likes and followers, and to approach filters with a critical eye, no matter how cute you look.