We need normalization on social media


Photo via Wikimedia Commons

Instagram stories become a homefront for political and social debates.

Devon Schroeder, Multimedia Editor

Whenever I open my Instagram explore page, it almost always looks the same: Countless pictures of young women in full face makeup, cute but wildly impractical outfits, posing in idealistic locations.

As the technology generation, we’ve grown up constantly bombarded with ideas about who we should be and what we should look like.

Magazines and advertisers for years have been condemned for glorifying unrealistic standards, and many people now realize how fake their photos are. It’s a whole different ball game when these unrealistic standards are adopted by ¨normal¨ women on Instagram.

Most of us teenage girls go to great lengths to create the best version of our online selves. Whether we’re retouching blemishes, posing specifically to hide a supposed flaw, or telling friends to untag us in a picture we don’t like, we’re doing more than just misleading. It’s damaging.

There is so much pressure to portray our online lives as perfect. We have to be aware that the images shared by so many aren’t from real life. This is the pinched in, zoomed out, airbrushed version of what people want their lives to look like.

Let me be clear that I’m not bashing Instagram. It is a great platform that can be used to share our lives with friends and family we don’t get to see often. But we are overdue for a normalization of what is ¨real¨ on social media.