Opinion: TikTok facial appearance trends hurt self-esteem

New+TikTok+challenges+are+not+the+first+to+cause+dangers+and+other+issues+for+teens.+

Photo via TNW

New TikTok challenges are not the first to cause dangers and other issues for teens.

Rakshya Kafle, Club Member

Teens being self-conscious about their appearance is nothing new, but a harmful TikTok trend is making matters worse. 

Recently, users ranging from young boys and girls to teenagers have been participating in a new TikTok trend that has them covering a facial feature that they feel is “ugly” – and then uncovering it to show the difference it makes on their face.

General traits that do not fit into beauty standards are being heavily attacked. Some of the facial features that participants are focusing on include their noses, eyes, foreheads, and more. 

It is not new that the media can push harmful narratives and insecurities, but the body-related trends on TikTok are more frequent and followed by the masses. While one short video in which someone expresses their insecurities may seem harmless, it pushes the narrative that one’s facial feature is unattractive. 

Influencers with big platforms cause the most damage by participating in these trends, as even their small words reach many people.”

Also, these kinds of trends can lead people to think negatively about aspects of their appearance they had never considered before. For example, another fairly new TikTok trend asks participants to focus on the distance between their nose and upper lip. To many, this was something that they had never given much thought to, but this new trend pushes that concept into the spotlight. 

Hip dips, cellulite, and stretch marks are seen as normal in society, but on social media it’s a different story. There are workouts to hide hip dips, diets that claim to get rid of cellulite, and cosmetic procedures that color in stretch marks. 

Many younger kids see these videos and learn to cover their uneven teeth in pictures, use contour to hide their sharp noses, or get lip fillers for their small lips. These habits usually stay, even in adulthood. 

Unfortunately, these are not the first trends that push insecurities on others, nor will they be the last.

Influencers with big platforms cause the most damage by participating in these trends, as even their small words reach many people. Their viewers start to pick up on those and spread the same ideas, which creates an endless cycle that is difficult to end.